Dear Tireless, Brilliant, Talented Job-Seekers: Friend Us on Facebook!

by Greentarget
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Still anonymously searching for resumes on LinkedIn or Monster.com? That’s so 20th century. If you want to attract the most talented job seekers now, you’d best jump into the fray, not only on LinkedIn but also on Facebook, Twitter and maybe even Google+. More than ever, social media plays an integral role in attracting new employees.

Why? First of all, your competition is already doing it. About 92 percent of U.S. companies are using social networks and media to find talent this year, and 73 percent of employers have successfully hired a candidate through social media, according to Jobvite’s Social Recruiting 2012 survey. And no major social-media channel is left untapped—of the employers who hired, 89 percent have hired from LinkedIn, 25 percent through Facebook and 15 percent through Twitter. (The Jobvite survey didn’t touch on Google+, but you ignore the service at your peril. Though a fraction of the size of Facebook, Google+ surpassed 100 million users earlier this year.)

Social-media channels, it turns out, are equally crucial in discovering compatible job candidates and tapping into talent pools for both B2B and B2C. Social-media brand profiles are highly visible and easily accessible—and they live where your savviest potential employees spend their free time. So you should make it easier for them to find your company and get a sense of why they might want to work for you.

A whopping 71 percent of HR and recruiting professionals already consider themselves moderate to exceptional social recruiters, according to the Jobvite survey. What makes an exceptional social recruiter? Being sophisticated about conveying the workplace culture that will compel people to work at your company. These are not one-way channels, like the old help-wanted section in the back of the newspaper. Good recruiters facilitate social dialogue, according to a recent Research Now survey. A company should strive to achieve the same level of comfort and compatibility with potential employees that it does with clients and prospects.

Social-media channels should be well-rounded resources within their industries, incorporating not just job postings but also articles and studies that add value and drive discussion. “The real value of social recruiting is when companies continually engage with people through social networking, so when an appropriate job opens up, the person is familiar with the company and has a propensity to want to work there,” says Ted Elliott, CEO and founder of social enterprise talent management firm Jobscience, in an eWeek article. “It’s about social sourcing and building pipelines of talent, so your talent pool never runs dry.”

Hyatt Hotels, which participated in our recent Social Media Week discussion on shared social-media strategies between B2B and B2C marketers, has taken this concept to heart. The company maintains an active Twitter account and Facebook page for ongoing interaction with job seekers, not only showcasing upcoming job fairs but also sharing photos of employee celebrations, news about the company’s involvement in the community, and general tips on job hunting. They have established a consistent presence in the social-media feeds of the sort of people they would like to hire.

Starbucks, meanwhile, just launched a new job app that details open positions, benefits and company culture. “What’s it like to work at Starbucks? It’s a lot like working with friends,” the app’s opening paragraph reads. “For one thing, the people who work here aren’t ‘employees’ – we’re ‘partners’ because we passionately share common goals and mutual success.” The app feeds into the tech-savvy habits of both job seekers and current employees with a shareable and easily accessible platform that, on Facebook alone, reaches more than 32 million Starbucks “fans.”

As corporate social-media efforts expand, smart recruiting departments aren’t shouldering the responsibility alone. They’re using current employees to drive and disseminate the message. Employees on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook increasingly contribute to recruiting efforts through their own posts and tweets, writes Sajjad Masud, CEO of cloud-based social-recruiting platform Simplicant, on Mashable. “Not only are open positions getting distributed as pieces of content to vast networks of people, but it’s also facilitating the use of social referrals—one of the best sources of quality candidates. Job seekers are finding ways to take advantage of social referrals by keeping in contact and engaging with key members of companies.”

The underlying theme in this evolving social media strategy, for both B2B and B2C marketers, is the cultivation of deeper, lasting and more meaningful relationships. We’ll be following this trend closely as it continues to grow.

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