In recruiting, social media is just another medium to use in your communication mix. What is really important in social recruiting, just like in any other communication medium, is the message – this is what will determine your success or failure. More importantly, social media is not a sourcing tool – it’s simply an engagement and relationship building channel.
Matt Charney in “How To Build A Successful Social Recruiting Strategy” emphasizes that the primary use of social media should be to build relationships and engage candidates. In other words, it should be used to show an organisation’s corporate culture, showcase employees as well as offer a means to interact with candidates. On that point, Charney stresses the importance of testing your messaging before going out in social media, to ensure that it’s appealing, relevant and true to candidates (2013).
More importantly, Charney highlights the need for employers to address fundamental issues, such as negative market perception or low staff engagement, instead of spending resources and efforts at first to launch a full scale social recruiting strategy. As he rightly points out, if fundamental problems are not solved, social media will merely exacerbate the situation by amplifying intrinsic corporate problems.
Another relevant point that Charney addresses is that there are “no experts” or “established benchmarks” of success when it comes to social recruiting. There is only “experimentation” and “emerging best practices”. In addition, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach on how to do social recruiting. On the contrary, the nature of social media is to provide individual and subjective experiences – hence your social recruiting strategy will need to cater to individuals.
Yet the “bottom line”, as Charney writes, is for employers to build a coherent employer brand that is properly and consistently represented across channels. The goal by using social media should be to win the minds and hearts of candidates, by showing them the corporate culture and prominently featuring the organisations best employees.
It cannot be said more perfectly, as Charney concludes, “Top talent makes its decision based on one single competitive differentiation: your company’s culture and the people who create it”. Therefore, use social media to interact with candidates and show the authentic side of your corporate culture.
Below are some interesting findings that Charney refers to in his article about social recruiting.
• 55% of employers plan to increase their money spent on social recruiting. It will thus take a growing share of the $140 billion spent on recruiting products and services.
• 42% of hires are still current employees, being the top recruiting source. This is followed by employee referrals, representing 24.5% of new hires.
• While 92% of employers use social media for recruiting, only 2.9% of hires derive from it.
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Charney, Matt (2013). How To Build A Successful Social Recruiting Strategy. RecruitingBlogs. [Online] Available from http://www.recruitingblogs.com/profiles/blogs/social-recruiting-strategy [Accessed 29 October 2013]