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Social Recruiting: Find Your Perfect Employee Online

With 94% of recruiters using some kind of social network to find new employees (according to US based recruiting site Jobvite) social recruitment has established itself as the dominant form of recruiting for businesses of all sizes. But finding the right employees – and standing out from the crowd – can be just as challenging for recruiters as it is for job seekers.

As social media networks continue to grow and diversify their audiences, finding the path to recruitment success becomes more challenging. Like any social strategy, keeping things simple is often the best way to sort through the increasing clutter.

Here are a few tips for landing the perfect recruit online.

1. Pick your platform and know your audience.

“Post the job on LinkedIn, right?”

Absolutely. LinkedIn obviously caters to the networking crowd, but don’t discount Twitter or Facebook as two social networks that still have a large percentage of overall social users. Facebook, in particular, holds a staggering share of the pie with close to 1.2 billion active users.

You’ll find that each social network will cater to different parts of your recruitment strategy depending on your goals and audiences. LinkedIn offers more traditional tools for recruitment, while video and photo platforms like YouTube and Instagram are great places to show off your brand to prospective employees.

2. Invest in social.

If you really want to maximize your recruitment reach, be prepared to spend some money. Social media is free by nature, but a little investment can assure your message is reaching as many of the right recruits as possible. LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter all offer promoted posts to boost visibility. Twitter recently joined the others in offering audience insights, a detailed breakdown of your followers’ demographics. This data is incredibly valuable in forming a recruitment strategy and can save a lot of wasted time and effort.

If you still find yourself needing an extra push, try seeking out the classic job networks like Monster and Workopolis, or consider a more local approach with Manitoba networks like mbjobs.ca.

3. Stand out by being strategic with your pitches.

People are more sensitive to spam today than ever before, and that also applies to social media. If you use a template approach for online recruitment, your messages are likely to end up ignored. This is particularly important on LinkedIn where it’s easy to tune out a barrage of empty endorsements and invitations from people who appear to have given no consideration to your skills or experience.

Just as prospective employees should never use the same cover letter for every job they apply for, businesses looking for recruits online shouldn’t think that a one-size-fits-all tactic is attractive to anybody. Take the time to craft a well-written job description and explain a bit about your company so recruits get a good idea of a 'day in the life' for that role. You’ll have more success down the line if your initial job advertisement is carefully worded. 

Before you post the role, remove the company name and ask fellow colleagues to read the description. If people read the anonymous listing and say “Wow, that sounds like a great place to work” or “Imagine having a great role like that!?” then you’ve probably written an attractive description. But don’t oversell the role either or you’ll wind up with recruits having expectations that can’t be matched.

4. Get creative.

Want to convince prospective employees your business is right for them? Show them! Social media offers all kinds of creative mediums – like video, pictures and podcasts – to set your business apart from the stale job description. These types of posts perform better than simple text on social media, so take advantage of them for recruitment.

This approach can be used in direct recruitment, but you can also make it a part of your ongoing social media strategy. Are you having a wicked staff celebration or know a colleague marking a special achievement? Let your followers in on the fun. Establishing a positive work culture is just as important online as it is in the office.

The best applicants will be interviewing you as much as the other way around, and they’ll search all platforms to figure out how they’ll fit into your culture. You’ll attract top talent by demonstrating how your company can help its employees develop their professional skills, find fulfilling work and genuinely enjoy their colleagues. Consider posting first person videos of your employees speaking about the great company culture and the benefits of working in their roles. This could help you truly stand out from the crowd.

Which social recruitment strategies has your business had success with? Tell us in the comments below.

Adam Campbell

If there’s a new piece of tech, Adam is probably coming up with an excuse to buy it. He’s constantly experimenting with new applications to find simplified solutions to everyday issues. Adam is a writer, a reader, a communicator, a devourer of media and a pop-culture obsessor. He’s also a Winnipegger with a passion for his home city’s history and quirks.

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