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Social Media > Talent Acquisition

CareerBuilder’s Top Ten Best Practices for Using Social Media as a Recruitment Tool

untitledSocial Media works because it humanizes your company, engaging your audience in a more direct way than with other recruiting mediums.

Here are some tips to think about as your analyze the social media aspect of your recruitment strategy:

  1. SET A GOAL: Setting a strategy before implementing tactics is critical to any business initiative. Before you dabble in social media, ask yourself if branding and awareness, client lead generation, candidate pipelining, candidate or client communication, or employee engagement is your aim.
  2. MASTER ONE MEDIUM: Many companies believe social media is an all or nothing adventure. However, the best approach is to start with one site. Head to your top pick and get comfortable with the interface and its unique features. It takes time and dedication to plan and follow through on posting new materials, developing a user base, etc.
  3. MANAGE YOUR ONLINE REPUTATION: Social media is all about word-of-mouth marketing. Share success stories, from an employee’s perspective, about working with your organization. Highlight your unique knowledge and share useful information with candidates that they will share with others.
  4. CREATE A USER EXPERIENCE: Social media is about creating an open dialogue and building relationships with others, with the end goal of creating an active community. You don’t want one-hit wonders; you want to start conversations that engage your audience and keep them coming back for more.
  5. LISTEN, LEARN AND ENGAGE: The most important thing you can do on any site is to listen to your audience. The second most important step is to digest that information and then respond. As you build trust with your community, you will be able to engage talent in candid discussions about your company and value.
  6. HIGHLIGHT SPECIFIC JOBS: Posting all your openings on social media is great, but it is more effective to focus on specific openings each week or even month. Give more than just a job posting; provide talent unique information about the company or job. Help candidates understand why the job might be the right opportunity.
  7. VISUALLY STIMULATE: From simple photos and videos to fancy custom applications, get your audience visually stimulated and you will get their attention. Incorporate photos and videos in everything you do. You want your company to stand out and interesting multimedia content is the best way to get attention.
  8. BOOST YOUR RANKINGS: Adding your presence to social media sites will organically boost your online profile in search rankings. Search engines weight search results based on the number of visitors to a site. Thus, by associating your company with a popular social media site, it can improve where you come up in search results.
  9. PREPARE TO CHANGE: Social media is the cool new “thing” on the Internet. However, no one platform is poised to become the end-all-be-all of social media or even social media recruitment at this point in time. The hot site next month may not even be on anyone’s radar, yet. Be on the lookout for new sites and don’t be afraid to test the waters.
  10. PROMOTION: Promote your presence once you are up and running on the social media platforms of your choice. Place links on your Web site, put them in your email signature, highlight them in marketing campaigns, and even send links to become fans, friends, or followers in application confirmation emails.

Got any additional strategies that have worked for your company? Let’s hear ‘em.

Stephanie Gaspary

About Stephanie Gaspary

Stephanie is the managing director of content strategy at CareerBuilder, tasked with creating opportunities to share the CareerBuilder story across job seeker and employer channels. Stephanie, a lifelong learner, holds a Master's in Business Administration and a Master's in Management - both from North Park University and a Bachelor's degree in Art from Bethel University. A Minnesotan at heart, Stephanie has lived in Chicago for nearly 20 years, is the doting mother to two wacky german shorthaired pointer pups, looks forward to her morning run *almost* as much as that first cup of coffee and vows to one day live in the mountains.
13 comments
Michael
Michael

This is the best top ten list that I can find to help recruiters start using social media to recruit.

Ginger Dodds
Ginger Dodds

All very good points when it comes to using SM as part of your recruitment and retention plan. One thing to point out, though, is the popular misconception that social media is "Free." Sure, there is no charge right now to create your Twitter profile or your Facebook fan page, but time = money. It takes time to learn how to use the sites, to set up profiles that will attract and engage potential job seekers and time to converse with fans and followers. Have you identified a person or team of individuals that can take time away from their current tasks during their work day and spend that on social media? How does that translate into dollars for your company? Having a social media team or a community manager is going to require time on a daily basis.

TJ Haygood
TJ Haygood

Great article! We are finding in our organization that typically those who are in their mid 40s and younger seem to thrive more on the many avenues social media provides in order to stay connected. Is this typical of other business experiences or are our findings unique to our market place?

TJ Haygood
TJ Haygood

Great article! We are finding in our organization that typically those who are in their mid 40s and younger seem to thrive more on the many avenues social media provides in order to stay connected. Is this typical of other business experiences or are our findings unique to our market place?

Vince
Vince

This is a really great top ten list. I think mastering one or two social media tools is the best advice. A lot of people just spread themselves too thin and end up being a jack of all trades but master of none, which really does not serve your long-term goals very well. I think different social networks work better for different kinds of jobs and there may be some trial and error before you can settle on the one that works best for you. Anyone can post their own list to our site http://www.toptentopten.com/. The coolest feature is you can let other people vote on the rankings of your list.

Vince
Vince

This is a really great top ten list. I think mastering one or two social media tools is the best advice. A lot of people just spread themselves too thin and end up being a jack of all trades but master of none, which really does not serve your long-term goals very well. I think different social networks work better for different kinds of jobs and there may be some trial and error before you can settle on the one that works best for you. Anyone can post their own list to our site http://www.toptentopten.com/. The coolest feature is you can let other people vote on the rankings of your list.

Geoffrey Toffetti
Geoffrey Toffetti

Great comments everyone. For those organizations just delving in to the social media world I would add to Stephanie's comment and say that you need to identify an evangelist within your organization to drive awareness and commitment. If you are reading this you may be that person!

There is certainly a gap in the market now between those who have heard of social media and those who utilize it to drive revenue. It can take the passion and energy of one person to get the needle moving.
Good luck!

Geoffrey Toffetti
Geoffrey Toffetti

Great comments everyone. For those organizations just delving in to the social media world I would add to Stephanie's comment and say that you need to identify an evangelist within your organization to drive awareness and commitment. If you are reading this you may be that person!

There is certainly a gap in the market now between those who have heard of social media and those who utilize it to drive revenue. It can take the passion and energy of one person to get the needle moving.
Good luck!

Troy Drahos
Troy Drahos

I agree with the list and Stephanie's comment. It is necessary to have a focal point in your organization to target this strategy. Focus and consistancy is very important.

Troy Drahos
Troy Drahos

I agree with the list and Stephanie's comment. It is necessary to have a focal point in your organization to target this strategy. Focus and consistancy is very important.

Stephanie Huff
Stephanie Huff

Also, I would also suggest to have one specific person or one specific team manage or head up the social media responsibilities. It is important to uphold company brand and standards while sharing a consistent message across or mediums.

Stephanie Gaspary
Stephanie Gaspary

Thanks Michel. You are very right. Time and effort are two huge pieces not to be overlooked.

Michel Rijnders
Michel Rijnders

Good list of basic thoughts for stepping into social media! I would like to add "time and effort". Social recruitment takes more time and effort and you must be willing and able to invest without direct results on short term. Social recruitment is mainly investment in longer term profit.

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  4. [...] The most troubling stat? A whopping 57 percent said they didn’t know how many people were involved in managing their company’s social media strategy (and I’m guessing many didn’t know who was doing it, either). While this may be common, it’s important for companies to have a plan before they jump headfirst into social media (and if you’ve already made that jump, it’s never too late to clean up your process). You might want to check out our social media e-book that covers the A to Zs of social media for businesses, and then, when you need a quick refresher, read about best practices for using social media for recruitment. [...]

  5. [...] The most troubling stat? A whopping 57 percent said they didn’t know how many people were involved in managing their company’s social media strategy (and I’m guessing many didn’t know who was doing it, either). While this may be common, it’s important for companies to have a plan before they jump headfirst into social media (and if you’ve already made that jump, it’s never too late to clean up your process). You might want to check out our social media e-book that covers the A to Zs of social media for businesses, and then, when you need a quick refresher, read about best practices for using social media for recruitment. [...]

  6. [...] The most troubling stat? A whopping 57 percent said they didn’t know how many people were involved in managing their company’s social media strategy (and I’m guessing many didn’t know who was doing it, either). While this may be common, it’s important for companies to have a plan before they jump headfirst into social media (and if you’ve already made that jump, it’s never too late to clean up your process). You might want to check out our social media e-book that covers the A to Zs of social media for businesses, and then, when you need a quick refresher, read about best practices for using social media for recruitment. [...]

  7. [...] this has been out there for a few months now, I thought it will be useful to reproduce it. It is CareerBuilder’s Top Ten Best Practices for Using Social Media as a Recruitment [...]

  8. [...] Leverage social media to recruit. Go beyond learning how to do it yourself, and teach others in your firm how to do it. The survey found that 61 percent of staffing firms are using social media to find applicants, and 56 percent are using it to research candidates. Don’t just blast out positions and openings, either; that turns off your audience. You really need to learn how to engage your audience to get the most out of your social recruiting efforts. [...]

  9. [...] Leverage social media to recruit. Go beyond learning how to do it yourself, and teach others in your firm how to do it. The survey found that 61 percent of staffing firms are using social media to find applicants, and 56 percent are using it to research candidates. Don’t just blast out positions and openings, either; that turns off your audience. You really need to learn how to engage your audience to get the most out of your social recruiting efforts. [...]

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