Unemployment may be rising and the economy tepid at best but the question of how to attract the best candidates should still be on the agenda for every organization seeking to maintain a competitive edge. However, according to Tamer Rafla, a Montreal-based tech entrepreneur and founder of Klujo, a social recruitment tool, many of the organizations he surveyed continue to place their recruitment efforts on the reactive rather than a proactive side of the business ledger.
Unfortunately, too often effective and consistent recruitment activities take a back seat to many other activities HR contends with. Whether an organization is hiring for entry level and service industry jobs or the next great software developer, finding the best candidates requires more than waiting for the right candidate to submit an application.
Moving Recruitment Up and Out Front
Until recently it was not uncommon for organizations to post job ads on job boards and then sit back and wait for candidates to find their jobs. This recruiting strategy can work well to attract some active candidates, but a lot of great talent are passive in their job search and may not be out looking for your job posting. This is why having an active recruitment strategy is important and this is also where social media can be an excellent component of your recruitment strategy.
Rafla says that “top talent are hanging out in online communities to read, share and comment on posts – rather than look for a job. These candidates have different values and expectations compared to previous generations. As a result employers need to rework their recruitment strategies and adapt to these new channels.”
As social media continues to transform the candidate experience organizations without a proactive social recruitment strategy will find they are at a disadvantage. An organization without a proactive recruitment strategy will not have the social presence needed to be in the right place at the right time to get in front of the best candidates.
Employers Need a Social Presence To Attract Candidates
Due to the large volume of noise on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram, organizations often struggle to get their jobs noticed. With slick media content competing next to a standard job ad it can be difficult to catch a top candidate’s eye. However, organizations with a proactive social strategy can increase their chances of engaging with their potential talent pool by getting their potential talent pool to engage on their behalf.
Rafla suggests 3 simple but effective ways to use social media to source and acquire talent.
3 Social Media Recruitment Strategy Tips
1. “Focus Your Social Strategy”: It is important to understand your talent pool and the social spaces they inhabit. Many organizations have found LinkedIn an easy and convenient way to source talent, but Facebook continues to have an active user base with 890 million daily users. Facebook may not be the ‘It’ space it used to be but many Millennials grew up on Facebook and are still there.
Unless you have unlimited time Rafla suggests beginning by selecting 2 social spaces that are most relevant to where your target candidates can be found.
- “Pull Don’t Push With Candidate Marketing”: Blasting job postings and recruiting messages out to large numbers of candidates might sound like an effective numbers play but it rarely works. Potential candidates can easily ignore job ads, click them away, ban or even report your recruiting ads as spam.Rafla suggests that to “win on recruitment with social media you have to attract or “pull” talent towards you; candidates need to be engaged first and feel that you are genuinely interacting with them to make them want to look at your organization then for your job opportunities before applying.”
- “Transparency and Authenticity Remain Important”: When you are trying to “pull” engagement through social recruiting it is important that you reflect your authentic employer brand. Refrain from posting and sharing content based on what you think your talent’s interests are and focus on communicating the content that reflects who you are.Rafla recommends creating 4-6 high-level topics that reflect your organization’s recruiting interests and organizational goals and story. Through authentic sharing you can engage potential hires to first become fans and even brand ambassadors before wanting to become employees.
Companies are constantly under pressure to find top talent at lower costs while competing with big brands and promising start-ups. Having a proactive and cost-efficient recruitment strategy requires more than the latest HR technology. Recruitment leaders should view the progress of their organization towards recruitment strategy maturity as a continuous improvement journey. Rafla recommends that recruitment efforts can become optimized only when HR leaders have internalized the following four points.
- Demonstrate a strong knowledge of the company’s strategy, and actively participate in the direction of the business and its human capital.
- Adopt a forward thinking approach and try to anticipate cultural changes in the workforce (e.g. Millennials and Gen Z). Some changes can be unforeseen requiring a rapid response to avoid disruption to business operations.
- Use data to improve hiring and social engagement decisions. This consists of collecting and analyzing meaningful insights to measure recruitment and hiring performance and optimize social recruitment campaigns.
- Stay ahead of the social recruitment curve by investing in new products and services that will help automate and rocket fuel talent marketing and employer branding campaigns.
For more tips on social recruitment connect with Tamer Rafla at firstname.lastname@example.org. Klujo is a social recruitment technology that uses gamification to automate the process of creating effective employer branding campaigns. This app works with any existing applicant tracking system (ATS) to inject “playful” elements into job ads, designed to help foster a better candidate experience and boost the employer brand. These “mini-games” have been designed and tested through research collaboration with the federally funded Games Institute at the University of Waterloo.