Fishing for Top Talent? Use the Right Bait.

How to leverage social media for talent recruitment

How to leverage social media for talent recruitment

Ask anyone working at a thriving company what the best thing about the organization is. Chances are that the answer is going to be, “the people.” Sharp, passionate employees are critical to every organization and making talent recruitment a top priority sounds like a no-brainer. Yet, most organizations are using archaic tactics to attract those awesome people.

Cue the social media strategists. That’s right, I like cat videos and food pics as much as the next guy, but social media is for so much more than just connecting. To be fair, most brands already know that… but social media is also for so much more than pushing out your events and promotions. It’s one of the most powerful tools you have to recruit top talent and engage with your current employees.   

Your potential employees are already doing it

Fish where the fish are. That’s common sense. But a true fisherman knows something that others may not. If you’re after a specific type of fish, you also need to use the right bait. Before I get lost in metaphor land, let me break it down. It’s common sense to have an active social media presence if you want to attract fresh talent, especially Millennials. But you’re going to need to do more than just show up. Studies show that 59 percent of candidates use social media to research companies and 48 percent used social media to land their most recent jobs. Nearly 70 percent of active candidates report being more likely to apply for a job that manages its online brand. So, what exactly are these fish looking for when they scope out your brand online?

Questions to consider

Try to get in the mindset of the jobseeker when you examine your social media presence. Here are a few questions to consider when looking at how your social media relates to recruitment:

  • Are you pushing hiring on all of your social media profiles?
  • Do you showcase your employees regularly on your social media platforms?
  • Do your current employees engage with your brand on social media and sites like Glass Door in a positive way?
  • Would you want to work at your company based on what you see happening on social media?

Room for improvement?

Don’t sweat it. It’s not too late to course correct, but you should get started right away. The first step is to align your social media with your recruitment objectives through a goal setting and strategy meeting. By engaging both your HR and your social media/content teams in the process, each group will have a better understanding of how to work together to set realistic and beneficial next steps. 

Focus on these four areas

Once you have a goal, it’s time to create a tactical plan. There are four key areas to focus on when approaching social media recruitment:

Passive posting – Sounds fancy, but this simply means using your social media outlets to advertise for the positions you are hiring. Make sure you use an image or video to grab attention, along with a link to the Apply Now page on your website. Don't have an application form built into your current website? Facebook recently rolled out a new job post functionality to help companies advertise positions. It’s not only housed in the Facebook newsfeed, but also in the company page structure. All you need is a job description and a potential new hire can actually apply right through the Facebook platform. Pretty handy, eh? LinkedIn also offers a recruiter program that has been generating awesome results for years.  

Paid advertising – As you’re crafting your job postings, you also have the opportunity to support your passive posting with paid advertising to maximize your reach. When you to promote your positions, it’s important that you adhere to all of the legal aspects of recruiting, i.e., don’t exclude protected classes such as age, sex or race.

One-on-one – Sometimes you’re looking for a very specific person and skill set. LinkedIn can help you search keywords to find candidates who have that skill set. As they turn up in the search results, you can view their profiles to see if they have the desired qualifications for the job. Once you have interest in someone, reach out and introduce yourself. Craft a custom message that compliments the individual and asks if he or she would be open to talking with you about an opportunity. Worst case scenario, you’ve made a solid new connection! LinkedIn also has paid tools that are more advanced.

Social referrals (or micro-influencers)Statistics show the power of a personal referral is one of the most impactful. Referrals are five times more effective than all other sources of hiring. Plus, those same referrals are hired 55 percent faster than those higher through a career site.  Faster and better? Yes please! Yet, less than 16 percent of hires come from referrals. Organizations need to empower their employees, as well as their advocate base like customers and suppliers to support their efforts. Ever hear someone rave about their job and highly recommend working with them? It’s pretty convincing.

Your social media recruitment plan is going to be as unique as your organization and the people that make it up. However, this simple framework will help you organize your plan into some actionable items. Remember, it all starts with strategy, collaboration and choosing the right bait.