By Dave Imbrogno, President of National Account Services for ADP’s Global Enterprise Solutions unit.
Chances are that your company is turning to social media more and more to recruit the talent it needs. That’s not surprising. In 2013, according to recruiting professionals surveyed by Bullhorn, social media ranked third as the most successful source of qualified candidates behind existing candidates from applicant tracking systems and referrals from previous successful placements.
Social recruiting has become an invaluable way to engage individuals who are a good fit with your company culture and core values. With more than one billion monthly users on Facebook and more than 360 million members on LinkedIn, social media is where many applicants are connected and connecting; and where social media-savvy employers are proactively reaching prime prospects to fill vacancies in the current war for talent.
According to its’ 2014 Social Recruiting Survey, recruiting software platform specialist Jobvite found that 93% of recruiters use or plan to use social media to support their recruiting efforts. Moreover, two-thirds of survey respondents confirmed that they have already successfully hired a candidate using social media.
Looking to launch a social recruiting program? Here are four best practices to consider:
1. Identify the Right Sites
The social media space is huge, with new platforms launching all the time. If your company wants to engage through social media, just being present is not enough. Think of yourself as a unique employer brand. As the Jobvite survey says: “recruiters must engage candidates like a marketer would engage customers.” For instance, LinkedIn is the best site to reach executives experienced in international business, while Facebook would be a better option for a younger and less highly qualified target group.
A good way to connect with candidates with specific skills is to tap into “interest groups” or professional communities with particular expertise. Niche social networks address a wide range of career groups from federal employees to health care workers. Other niches are based on geography, like Viadeo in France, Xing in Germany and Orkut in Brazil.
2. Encourage Employees to Get Social
Employees with access to social networks are in an ideal position to create positive momentum on social sites. One of the best ways to start engaging employees as ambassadors of your business is to identify key individuals who understand your brand vision, are socially savvy, and can project the passion and personality that can help enhance your employment image. Be sure to look across all departments and positions to maximize results.
CAUTION: It’s vital to create a firm set of guidelines to help employees keep your message consistent, factually accurate and appropriate. Have a system in place to track and monitor activity. Equally important, maintain an ongoing dialogue and gather feedback on a regular basis.
3. Create Your Own Community
Depending on your specific recruiting needs, existing interest groups might prove insufficient. Consider developing your own “community” – a specialized blog, a collaborative forum or a job information site to exchange opinions and share experiences. The curious will discover your company there. Specialists can compare and contrast their skills and introduce themselves to your recruiters.
To be visible online, make it easy for interested visitors to find you. Optimize visibility using relevant keywords and create links from your corporate and career websites to your company’s Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn pages. Operating a social community is all about being proactive, engaging potential candidates in dialogue early on, and forming a talent pool with an eye on positions that you might not yet have created.
4. Give HR a Social Media Role
Social media pushes boundaries and creates new roles for all members of your team – especially HR. It’s up to your HR team to choose the social media platforms that enable a dynamic online representation of your company and your employer brand. Set up meaningful metrics and make adjustments before putting full faith in your performance indicators.
Once your strategy is in place for a while, then it’s time to measure the impact of your social media efforts. An increase in the number of spontaneous applications from people who have discovered your employer brand online is a good sign that your social recruitment strategy is having a positive impact.
This article was written by By Dave Imbrogno, President of National Account Services for ADP’s Global Enterprise Solutions unit. He is responsible for many of the company’s Human Capital Management solutions, including Human Resources, Payroll, Time and Labor Management, Comprehensive Outsourcing Services, Talent Acquisition and Talent Management.