#FirstInHR: Using the Power of Social to Recruit

Setting up a recruiting strategy can be overwhelming, especially if you don’t have much experience with the hiring process. Regardless of where you are in developing your business, look to social networks for new hires. Not yet convinced about the benefits of using social media in recruiting? You’re already well behind the curve, as 92 percent of companies use social media to recruit their next best hire. Nearly half of Fortune 500 companies include social media links on their careers s..., with LinkedIn leading the pack when it comes to where recruiters look.

Furthermore:

  • 73 percent of companies have made successful hires using social media
  • 42 percent of organizations have noted an increase in candidate quality from social media
  • 20 percent of companies say social recruiting cuts down on time-to-hire.

If you’re one of the 36 percent of companies that aren’t engaged with social recruiting, you need to get started. Here are few things you’ll need to attract the right hires online.

Know Your Candidate’s Rights

A candidate’s social profile reveals a lot of information about them. Depending on their privacy settings, these profiles can shed light into their experience, work ethic and hobbies outside of work. Be aware, however, that making decisions based on their profile is a bit of a legal gray area, and can lead to discrimination lawsuits if you’re not careful.

Keep in mind, not all of your candidates use social media. That could be a deal-breaker depending on the industry, but it’s important to tread lightly. Not hiring someone based on their lack of a social media presence could violate some EEO guidelines, depending on the candidate’s economic status, race, gender, or disability status. Just because an applicant doesn’t use Twitter doesn’t mean they can’t perform well at your tech startup!

Monster recommends that recruiters meet their candidates face-to-face before looking through social media profiles to avoid judgments based entirely on what they’ve posted online. Check social media profiles at the same point in every candidate’s hiring process, as well as archiving any posts you come across that might be cause for alarm.

“There are still a lot of recruiters and HR professionals out there who are either hesitant for social recruiting or simply don’t feel comfortable with the new platforms,” says  Jörgen Sunderberg (@jorgensunderberg) of Link Humans, Undercover Recruiter and Social Media London. “When beginning with social recruiting, it’s important to understand the platform, have patience and get the basics right.”

Be Attractive Online

Let’s assume your company is already on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook and you’ve reviewed candidate profiles the right way. How do you make the organization more welcoming? In order to attract Millennial candidates, you have to approach recruiting like promoting a product, which means being transparent. These job seekers are alert to the difference between honest companies and those that misrepresent themselves in an effort to build appeal: 40 percent of Millennials don’t trust advertising.

Small businesses can afford to be more nimble and flexible. Use that to your advantage. Make more personable and attractive posts online about the employer brand and company values. Make fun and entertaining content to let your company’s branding speak for itself and catch candidate attention.

Small businesses with award-winning social media presences use the medium to build their brand in a relatable way. Regularly post content that doesn’t necessarily have to do with enticing people to apply, but rather emphasizes your company's culture with testimonials from employee brand ambassadors.

Recruiting candidates using social requires a careful plan, some internal help and inspiration from those who have boldly gone before. Dig into the power of social and what it really means to make your company attractive. It can help put your hiring strategy head and shoulders above the rest.

This post originally appeared on the Recruiterbox blog.

Bio: Raj Sheth

Raj Sheth is the CEO & co-founder of Recruiterbox, an online recruitment software and applicant tracking system designed especially for growing companies. Prior to Recruiterbox, he founded two other web startups -- a classifieds portal and an ecommerce site. He is a graduate of Babson College and spent the first three years of his career as a financial analyst with EMC Corporation in Boston. Learn more about Recruiterbox right now.

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Views: 453

Comment by Daniel Fogel on July 22, 2015 at 10:24am

Raj - Thanks for posting!  It helps to have your employees posting on those social channels as well.  It makes the process even more transparent.  It's not just the company or recruiters talking about the brand but actual people who work there.  On the flip side with all of the engagement, I think it blurs the traditional line of source of hire.  Was there one specific post or tweet that convinced a candidate to apply or more likely a combination of efforts?

Comment by Raj Sheth on July 22, 2015 at 2:31pm

Daniel, thanks for your insightful comment. You're absolutely right about the benefits of having employees post on social media. The cumulative impact of employee and employer social media activity can do wonders to build an employer brand and attract new candidates.

Comment by Raj Sheth on July 23, 2015 at 2:07pm

SevenSeas, glad to hear you found it helpful.

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