A new Facebook application called the Social Jobs Partnership launched earlier today allows recruiters to post job listings directly on Facebook. This appears to be the same Facebook job board project that the Wall Street Journal touched on back during the summer.

It may seem like a novel idea to use the social network for employment opportunities but according to research data, it's far from a new trend. A study from The National Association of Colleges and Employers (a Social Jobs Partnership member) reveals that half of employers are using Facebook to fill job openings. Furthermore, 54 percent of those employers believe the social network will become an even more integral part of the hiring process in the future.

Social Jobs Partnership brings together the aforementioned National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) along with the US Department of Labor, the National Association of State Workforce Agencies, DirectEmployers Association and Facebook.

There are already more than 1.7 million job listings online from the likes of BranchOut, DIrectEmployers, Jobvite, Monster.com and Work4Labs. Job listings can be sorted based on industry, location or skill level.

Some initially thought when the Journal story broke a few months ago that Facebook's involvement in a job search program could be a direct rival to LinkedIn in terms of employer recruiting. That, however, doesn't appear to be the case.

Instead, as Work4Labs CEO Stephane Le Viet points out, this could be a tipping point for the social recruiting industry. The executive says it will help people realize that there's more to Facebook than just pictures and friends. It can be used to make social connections that could lead to finding your next job or hiring some extra help.