Over 92% of companies now use social media as one of their principal tools for recruitment, with 70% of hiring managers stating that they’ve successfully hired as a result. It’s not hard to see why – social media channels are the online home for a huge section of the population, as well as a rich source of networks for recruiters. However, while on the face of it social media are easy to use, in reality, many people have very little idea of how to get the best from them. A good way to start is to avoid making the following mistakes:
Not using enough/the right channels
These days, there are many different social media channels from which to choose. Too often though, companies have a presence on no more than a few, often sticking to the big three recruitment favourites, Linkedin, Facebook and Twitter. However, even their immense reach and online presence won’t necessarily get you to the nooks and crannies of the online world where the candidates you want to reach can be found.
To address this, hiring teams should know the general characteristics of the candidates with whom they want to connect, and choose their social media channels accordingly. From Instagram and Pinterest to XING and Snapchat (amongst many), these other social networks can reach the places where others don’t go. As our blog title seays, you don’t fish for salmon in a goldfish bowl…
Having no social media strategy
Social media are still seen by some as the new, slightly scary (“people might say something bad about us!”) kid in town, so often companies either shy away or take an ad hoc approach to their posting schedules and engagement. Surprise surprise – if you post when most of your network is not active you’ll not get such a good response. This can actually be quite harmful, because if you’re not maximising your reach you are missing opportunities to make new connections. Your social media audience will decay if it doesn’t have consistent, regular and stimulating updates and candidates will simply press ‘unfollow’ and take their affections elsewhere.
Hiring teams can use Talent Pooling and Pipelining software to send out posts automatically. They should also make sure that the content they upload is interesting, relevant and appropriate to the channel (clearly, Twitter demands a different approach to Linkedin, which in turn requires a different approach to Facebook). Remember, as a direct route to potential candidates, social media channels need thought, consideration and care.
Adding value for the audience
It’s surprisingly easily done, but too often companies will create and post content that offers little to their connections. The best content should benefit its audience in some way, promoting return visits and improving your reputation as a thought leader in your field. If hiring teams are simply disseminating vacancies and/or bland company updates they are unlikely to get much engagement, or much else, in return. And of course, when you do get engagement, hiring teams must not forget to respond promptly to those messages and comments, offering information and advice where necessary.
Social media is a powerful hiring tool when used well, able to promote a talent brand, foster a positive impression and reach out to new connections. If you are not making good use of it, you are missing a trick!