With social media and mobile technology becoming increasingly integrated into the recruitment process, companies have access to more information than ever on candidates, which has given way to the globally accepted trend of social recruiting.
Before social media, the traditional resume was the first touch-point available for evaluating a candidate´s experience, skills and professional associations. Today, employers and recruiters alike perform extensive digital searches on candidates before confirming their shortlist.
Google search results coupled with a quick scan of a candidate´s social channels almost always reveal valuable insights about them, both professionally and personally.
How Recruiters Are Using Social Media in The Recruitment Process
Social recruitment today simply involves leveraging the additional layer of information that is available about candidates through social channels, enabling the recruiter to optimise their shortlist process. An in-depth social understanding of a potential candidate can reveal many valuable insights; including not only their relevant skillsets, but also industry reputations, and/or existing personal or professional associations that might affect their cultural fit for a role. Digital discovery can reveal the good, the bad and of course, the ugly. It may not be blatantly ugly, rather simply the discovery of valuable information that might affect their suitability for a role, like unappealing associations or even potential conflicts of interest; which can be extremely valuable during a lengthy screening process.
A recent survey from Jobvite found that 92% of recruiters leverage social media networks as a part of their job. The same survey reveals that 72% of active candidates do their job searching on a mobile device, which isn´t surprising considering the confidential nature of looking for alternative employment, which obviously cannot be discreetly done from your work desktop.
Social networks are viewed by Australian corporations as a means for recruiting both passive and active candidates in a personal yet professional way. The truth is that even the most content employees would consider looking at another opportunity if it was presented to them. Social networking sites such as LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook make these passive opportunities more accessible than ewer.
How Candidates and Clients are Leveraging Social Channels Today
Social professional networks are the fastest growing channel for organisations looking to promote their ‘talent brand´. The ‘talent brand´ is quite simply what potential candidates in the market think and share about a company as a place to work. A LinkedIn Business Survey of 4125 talent acquisition decision makers across 14 different industries revealed that the percentage of businesses using social networks to promote their talent brands increased from 42% in 2012 to nearly 70% today.
The social web has also given way to the powerful and growing trend in Influencer Marketing. It is now easy (and free) to become an influencer via social channels if you are able to write well enough about your opinions.
Today anyone can write a blog, share a view and become an influencer in their field. A socially savvy influencer contributes and/or engages with their community via their own blog, which they can share across their social live feeds and beyond. Thanks to social tools like LinkedIn Pulse, which shares posts to other LinkedIn users that are interested in the category, they can engage with users whether they are connected to them or not. It is becoming more and more common for individuals to share their professional and personal opinions with their communities and beyond, which reveals an additional layer of information to recruiters about a candidate and their suitability for a role.
There are 400,000 million LinkedIn users globally and a recent Jobvite Survey revealed that 94% of the recruiters surveyed were actively searching for candidates on LinkedIn. There is no doubt that LinkedIn has come of age in the recruitment arena, offering an entire suite of recruitment solutions like LinkedIn Recruiter which allows recruiters to reach passive candidates by expanding the reach of their personal networks, contact candidates, directly and manage a pipeline of talent. The average number of LinkedIn mobile job applications has now reached a staggering 44,000 per day.
A LinkedIn profile can reveal a raft of aspects about a candidate; both personally and professionally. A savvy candidate will take full advantage of the opportunity to profile themselves in the best light possible; by including relevant attachments, articles or videos, list any awards, board positions and professional associations, outline their education, and community-based contributions.
The Recommendations and Endorsements sections of a user´s LinkedIn profile not only reveal who and how many people have recommended them, and for what attributes, but the calibre and credentials of their connections. It can also reveal any mutual connections that could provide a recruiter with the opportunity to obtain an objective opinion before adding them to an interview shortlist.
Facebook is a platform that should not be ignored when it comes to recruitment. After all, it is the second most traɝcked website in the world (after Google) with more than 1 Billion users. Whilst there is currently no direct pathway to apply for jobs through Facebook, according to this Jobvite Survey 81% of job seekers want to see job opportunities posted to Facebook career pages. Check out IBM Australia / NZ´s Career Page for an example of a career page that connects with potential candidates. It o”ers not only job news but begins to build relationships with potential candidates by providing valuable resources and a direct access point for candidates who are interested in a career with IBM.
Whether Facebook recruitment is relevant for a particular candidate search or not obviously depends on what demographic is being recruited. A Jobvite Job Seeker Study revealed that 67% of Millenials search for jobs on Facebook, as compared with 40% on LinkedIn. It goes without saying however that a potential CEO is almost certainly not looking for jobs on Facebook, whereas a socially connected candidate for a receptionist role may well be.
There is no doubt that Facebook is considered a more personal channel than a professional one, but also consider how the user experience and the nature of the content we engage with has evolved in recent years, in particular since the advent of Facebook advertising in 2014. Prior to the commercialisation of Facebook, the content shared on the channel was almost exclusively personal and community-based. There is no doubt that advertising has altered how we engage with Facebook and what we use it for. Just consider for a minute how your Facebook newsfeed has been affected by the sophisticated algorithms and big data that allow it to deliver messages that specifically relate to you. Advertising was most definitely resisted by Facebook users in the early days, but it has gradually become accepted if not even appreciated as it has evolved. The shift away from the personal to the professional now seems far less remote, and that is why recruitment has a role to play on Facebook.
A recent Jobvite Social Recruitment Survey revealed that 95% of recruiters and hiring managers post jobs on Twitter. It´s important here to point out that Twitter usage varies across industries which can affect how relevant it is in terms of recruitment. Whilst the industry a person works in doesn´t necessarily preclude them from using Twitter on a personal basis, those who rely on Twitter to keep up to date for work are generally more engaged with the medium on a regular basis. Media businesses and companies affected by economic shifts and time-sensitive news like real estate and interest rates are more likely to be using Twitter than sectors like industrial or hospitality for example, where economic or political fluctuations are less relevant to their customers.
Whilst 34% of job seekers say they use Twitter to search for jobs, the reality is that there is nothing to lose by posting jobs on Twitter. This statistic relates to the ‘search´ for the job, but not the level of interest in the job itself. Twitter is a news sharing medium, and the notification of a new role in a Twitter feed is likely to connect if it is relevant to the user even if they are not actively searching at the time. Remember that most workers would consider another role if the right conditions presented themselves, so the wider the net you cast for your search, the greater the chance it has of being seen by candidates in your network.
One of the most important things to understand about Twitter is its ability to measure a candidate´s increasingly relevant social currency. A person´s profile on Twitter can reveal significant indicators about their level of influence in their social network. Recruiters and employers are becoming more and more interested in the nature of the conversations people are hawing on Twitter; how often they tweet, what they tweet and how their content is engaged with, and who engages with it. A candidate´s social currency reveals a lot about their influence in their sector, and the content they create can reveal a lot about their personality, their views and their cultural tendencies. And there is no doubt that cultural fit is high on the priority list for an employer looking to fill a role.
Twitter is the ideal place to catch a candidate´s attention through the use of relevant hashtags and short catchy phrases that attract in under 140 characters, which appropriately brings us to the topic of hashtags. We can´t move past a review of twitter without recognising the power of the humble hashtag. There is nothing to lose by simply adding a short and punchy hashtag to the end of every post, and there is everything to gain; because a tweet with a hashtag is 33% more likely to get retweeted than one without. We need to refer again to IBM who have a Twitter Account called IBM Jobs @IBMJobsGlobal and regularly use the hashtag #IBMJobs. Searching online using hashtags can be highly effective; enabling candidates to search for jobs within specific criteria.
So what is the future of Social Recruitment?
Social Recruitment will evolve alongside every other industry that relies on the digital sharing of information, referrals and networking to do business. In reality, the requirements of recruiting the ideal candidate for a role haven’t changed; rather what has changed is the way that candidates and roles find each other.
So what´s next if you´re in recruitment? Here are our top predictions;
1. Live Streaming
2015 saw the launch of real-time like we´we newer seen it before – Periscope enables people to socially connect in real-time! In January 2016, Facebook´s Oculus released its virtual reality goggles the Oculus Rift which is the first step towards live streaming on Facebook. TV networks are releasing apps enabling viewers to live stream broadcasts from any device, such as the Plus7 App from Yahoo!7. This live-streaming trend will most definitely affect social recruitment; and give way to live-streamed interviews, training and more.
2. Mobile Recruitment
The trend towards mobile browsing is predicted to reach unprecedented highs. 2015 was the first year that mobile traɝc took ower desktop traɝc in ten countries including the US and Japan. In short, if you are not mobile enabled, that should be the first item on your To-Do list. With Dropbox and OneBox readily available on mobile, applicants can now upload resumes and cover letters from their mobile phones which suggests that uploading job applications via mobile will soon become mainstream.
3. Data Hiring
Big data has changed the nature of nearly every single mutually beneficial relationship in the corporate world. Big data can bring people, products, and services together like newer before. Of course, there will never be an algorithm that can replicate a first impression, the strength of a handshake or a good look in the eye that can be revealed in a face-to-face interview, but the initial screening process can be optimised through data and recruitment software like Voyager or Bullhorn.
4. The Millenial Evolution
Millennials (born between 1980 and 2000) will make up 50% of the workforce by 2020 so their influence is only set to grow. They will continue to be as complex and demanding as ewer, and recruiters will need to adapt their approach to attract and engage this next generation of employees. The emergence of the digital entrepreneur and the ability for them to become influencers via their social networks has bred a generation of diverse and dynamic job seekers, and the industry simply must evolve to connect with them.
5. The Social Resume
The Social resume will be perfected by job seekers and recruiters alike. Job seekers are quickly learning the craft of social influence, perfecting their ability to create the ultimate digital footprint to promote themselves. It´s not hard to create high-quality collateral with websites like Fivver promoting video producers willing to create a personalised sizzle reel for under $100. Savvy job seekers will embrace this opportunity and savvy recruiters must watch their creations, in order to get that one step closer to creating the ultimate interview shortlist to save time and resources.
There is no doubt that Social recruitment is here to stay, and that those who choose to embrace it will flourish. Recruitment has evolved into a highly dynamic industry that must deliver far more than candidates for jobs to its clients. The social recruiter must today engage at the deepest level with the organisations they represent, building a holistic understanding of their businesses in order to deliver innovative HR solutions that can be customised for their valued clients. Today´s social recruiter must provide a wide range of complementary services to support the broader HR function in order to sustain long term value. As we enter the era of virtual reality, live streaming and the continuing emergence of the Millennial employee, it is inevitable that the industry will continue to evolve with technology at the very heart of it.
- Date - May 19, 2020