How Businesses Can Use Social Media to Start Recruiting Candidates

Social media platforms are rivaling classified ads and online job boards as major hiring resources. Many businesses are directing human resource leaders to sift through social media profiles in order to find new recruits. This practice has greatly enlarged the recruitment pool to a global one.

Social media profiles give recruiters like PierceGray an opportunity to get a first impression of candidates before they have that first phone or in-person interview; this can save time and weed out inappropriate prospects quickly. Some businesses are going so far as to have current employees interacting with high-caliber and highly sought after professionals with prestigious resumes that the company is desperate to recruit.

Social media hiring

Keep these tips in mind when using social media to find the best employees:

1. Strategically use social media along with other classic practices – not instead of

Rather than replace classified ads and other more traditional scouting practices, use social media as an enhancement. While as much as 94 percent of businesses hire employees based on social media activity, online platforms themselves don’t always paint a full picture of social and professional skills of a candidate – but it can fill in the missing or elusive pieces. . Also, many excellent and serious professionals are still hesitant to open social media accounts.

2. Identify the Platforms for your Ideal Job Candidate

Most human resource directors focus on three popular sites for finding job candidates: Linked-in, Facebook and Twitter. However, there are hundreds of social media sites, many with a special interest focus. Go beyond the typical trio and find sites related to your company’s niche. Also, examine blogs and personal websites since many professionals maintain a site, using their legal name as the URL, where they upload portfolios, resumes, news of awards and other accolades. Since such sites often have comments, testimonials or reviews from the public, along with links to social media, personal sites do play a role in creating a complete social media picture.

3. Build Outstanding Social Media Pages for Your Business

Draw applicants to your business by creating an enticing account of your own on social media. Add photos from key workplace events. Spotlight news and benefits of working at the company. Tout your job climate. Trumpet the achievements of individual workers. Most of all, be friendly and depict your business as a fulfilling place to work. Then, you might not have to initiate contact; job candidates will message you.

4. Use Social Media as a Digital Corkboard for Job Notices

Announce vacancies in a Twitter or Facebook posts. Ask employees to share the job notice with their own followers. Research resumes on Linked-in and send messages of job vacancies to interesting talent.

5. Build an Online Network of Possibilities

The beauty of social media is that you can create an endless network of like minds. Follow or Befriend people in your field who you consider top-level prospects. Also, think back to old college mates or even grade school buddies who were super smart and had lots of initiative; you never know if they can be groomed to transition to your field. When executives at your business go to conferences or any meeting, have them take out their smart phones or tablets and collect social media addresses. This is similar to the old practice of collecting business cards, except you can actually do something constructive like following immediately and sending a short cordial message. Don’t be afraid to befriend competitor’s employees since you never know when they will be out of a job.

6. Use the Search Feature

Many people post updates that they’ve been laid off or otherwise let go from a job, followed by the request to pass along their resume. Using keywords in your industry along with words like “job,” “application,” “vacancy,” “hiring,” or “resume” you might be able to locate people who’d like to work for your company.

7. Review Who’s Searched for You

On Linked-in, there’s a feature that reveals who has looked at your company’s page. Chances are they were looking due to an interest in joining the company. Reach out to those individuals.

8. Join Industry-Related Groups

Many social media sites have topical groups where people gather for more direct conversation. Join those that cater to your niche. Start conversations on hot button issues or deficiencies in your field to see where the brightest minds with the innovative solutions might be.

With all types of professional employees increasing their social media use day by day, year by year, the digital water coolers of the world will remain a priority location for finding elite workers.

About the Author: Willie Pena enjoys writing about recruiting, small business and HR advice among other topics. Connect with him on Google+, LinkedIn.