We live in an age where hiring managers have more resources than ever before to try to identify talented people for their open positions. Social media is one of those resources and has now become part of the new normal when it comes to recruiting efforts. Corporations large and small are employing strategies to improve their social footprint. However, if you are relying on social media to do the recruiting for you, you may be missing the boat. Let’s start with some of the positives that social media offers.
Social media is the world’s directory. It allows you to target the types and locations of people you are looking for. The numbers are astounding and they cover all age groups and demographics. Facebook has 1.86 Billion users, LinkedIn has 467 Million users, Twitter 319 Million users, Snapchat has 150 million users, and those are only a few of the social media websites you have access to. There are also many industry specific social media sites where you can communicate directly with folks only in those industries.
· Employment Branding/Mass Communication
Social media is a great place to spread the word and advertise your company and its job opportunities to a wide audience. Employment branding is an important component of attracting the right type of talent. It gives you the ability to broadcast what it's like to work for your organization, including characteristics such as company culture, work environment, employee benefits, and employee value proposition. It can be an effective way to attract the right people to your organization, set expectations, improve retention and compete on a dimension other than solely compensation.
Now that you’ve put out a great message and presumably reached everyone within your target audience, what you do from here to pull the best job candidates through the funnel is where you can separate yourself.
· Live Conversations
It may be somewhat counterintuitive, but ultimately, your goal is to get the people you find on social media, off of social media and onto your staff. Recruiters have become experts with social media, but they know the only way they can really determine if a candidate is right for a particular job, is to engage them off line in a real-time discussion about their background and experience. Aline Wildes, President of FPC of Cambridge said, “I use social media extensively to identify targets, but I differentiate myself by picking up the phone and calling the candidates I have identified directly. I spend a lot of time on the phone with them to understand who they are and what their commitment to the process is.”
· Interpersonal Connections and Trust
This is where having your executive recruiter as a partner in the process you can share your vision and let them go to work. When you are working with an expert recruiter within your industry, you gain entry to their robust network of strong candidates both active and passive. While the process may seem simple on the outside, it can be very complex. In addition to narrowing it down to a candidates’ skill set, the right ‘fit’ also requires chemistry and motivation. This piece of emotional intelligence cannot be filtered through social media alone. Oftentimes the recruiter, a confidant of the candidate, has developed a relationship, gained trust, and is privy to their psyche – all information that is invaluable when it comes time for the close. Well trained recruitment specialists are adept at pre-closing and testing for commitment to ensure companies are able to hire the candidate they want.
There is no doubt that the internet and social media have disintermediated the recruitment landscape. But, it is critical to understand where these tools fall in the process. Social media is clearly a part of the equation, but it is important to remember that hiring has been and always will be a relational business. Good luck, and let us know how we can help.