A 2013 infographic from Staff.com revealed that 92% of companies use social media for recruitment and 42% of companies reported that candidate quality improved with social recruiting. With numbers like that, it's likely you may already be using social media channels to find the right candidates. Social media can be an excellent source for finding highly qualified candidates, if you're leveraging networks correctly and engaging with candidates on a consistent basis. If you're new to social recruiting or want to up your social recruitment game, here are some tips and tricks for using social media to find job candidates.
Go Where the Candidates Are Any social media marketer can tell you the all-important first step to social media success: finding where your prospects "live" online and going where they are. Find out what social media networks your candidates are using and create an account on each. Spend time browsing the site to get an idea of the types of people who use it as well as what posts seem to work the best. Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter combined have billions of users in their databases. Industry-focused sites may have smaller user bases, but they will be more targeted.
Tip: Once you join a relevant social network, study the use habits of your ideal candidate and tailor your activity to their habits. For example, if your candidates are online in the mornings, you should be as well.
Create Communities In addition to participating in third-party groups and email lists, consider starting one of your own. A purpose-built group can attract your ideal job seeker. Offer your group members an open, authentic environment in which they can share ideas and swap stories. Use relevant keywords and search terms to make your group easier to find, and don't forget to link to your group from your main website and social media profiles.
Tip: Make group members aware of your organization, but don't strictly use the group for self-promotional purposes. Encourage organic dialog between members. People will be more receptive if they don't feel a sales pitch is attached.
Build Your Own Brand Become a thought leader in your space by sharing relevant content and cutting-edge insights. Engage frequently with your connections and remember to keep your posts "on message." Go with quality over quantity and remember ABC: Always Be Contributing. In a similar way to creating communities, this will bring the candidates to you.
Tip: Keep your message consistent to build an "employment brand" and help job seekers understand your company's culture, values, and mission.
Post Your Jobs This is the simplest step and yet it may be the most effective. Post your open positions in your status updates or share them within your groups. Sharing your openings on social media allows them to be seen by your entire network, so even if it's not the right fit for one of your contacts, they may be able to help with a referral.
Tip: If someone applies to a position through a status update, remember to browse their profile.
Set Goals & Measure ROI Social recruiting is a long-term investment that will require time and effort. Don't become discouraged by what may be a time-consuming task. Instead, set specific goals for each social media channel and measure your successes. Learn the differences between each network and create goals that match the nature of the network.
Tip: Use your goals and successes to determine your future recruiting strategies. If you've had success finding candidates through social media channels, please share your experience with us in the comments!