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There are multiple benefits of investing your time and budget into building and maintaining a social presence for recruitment purposes, but there are also some important things to consider.

Whether you have already incorporated social media platforms into your hiring strategy, have dabbled a little here and there or are contemplating if it's an avenue your company should go down, there are plenty of opportunities whatever sector you operate in. 

Why is social media important for recruiting?

There’s a reason why so many companies are including social media platforms in their recruitment processes, here are just a few:

  1. It’s where your potential candidates are
  2. It increases the amount and quality of applications you’ll receive
  3. It increases your brand visibility
  4. You can involve the wider team

Let’s take a look at these in a little more detail.

  1. It’s where your potential candidates are

In the first ten years of their career, 86% of people utilise social media in their job search, including using these platforms to research potential employers. By not having a presence on these platforms, you are missing out on high-quality candidates finding you. Wouldn't you prefer to have potential candidates put in as much effort to find you as you do them?

  1. Utilising social media increases applications

To increase the number of job applications submitted, you need to be publicising the position on social media. This typically increases applications from anything between 30% and 50%. And if you post it organically, rather than paying for social media ads, you can potentially double the number of applications you receive with just a few minutes of your time. 

  1. Applicants are of a higher calibre, too

Not only will you see an increase in the number of applications you receive when you use social media for recruitment, but they will also likely come from higher calibre applicants.

This is because the candidates who are harnessing social media to drive their recruitment opportunities are usually more technologically savvy, which is a bonus if you are recruiting in the tech space.

  1. Social media increases your brand visibility

You’ll gain the most benefit from this by utilising paid advertising via social media, and is particularly helpful for smaller or new businesses that don’t have much in the way of brand visibility. 

Alternatively, if your business already has visibility, that doesn't mean you don't need a strong social media presence. You'll still increase the chances of finding potential candidates that may not be actively searching for a new position but could be swayed if they have a good relationship with your company.

In fact, a recent survey specified that 77% of participating companies use social media platforms to increase their employer brand recognition.

Not to mention that companies with a strong social media presence are viewed as more trustworthy by potential candidates. 

  1. Your team can get involved

Another benefit of utilising social media for recruiting is that your entire team can get involved if they want to. And all it takes is for them to share the posts you publish. 

This further increases your reach because they will have contacts that you may not be aware of. Not to mention that people who work with their friends are more likely to stay in the workplace longer, which reduces your hiring costs in the long run. 

A rundown of social media platforms:

While it's tempting to create business accounts on every social media platform out there, it isn't a great use of your resources. Remember that using social media for recruitment isn't just about running a job ad or posting a link to the job description. You need to build trust and relationships with your network, who will use your social media profile to ascertain whether your company culture is a good fit for them, and this takes time.

So, to put the necessary time and effort into recruiting via social media, you need to understand which platform will work best for you:

LinkedIn

With 740 million members covering 200 territories and countries worldwide, this platform is a fantastic choice, particularly if you are recruiting in the tech or finance sectors. This is the place potential candidates talk about their work, list their commercial achievements and look for their next job. If you want to target industry-specific groups of people, this is the platform for you.

This is a great place to advertise your roles organically (for free). You can use paid advertisements on this platform too, although LinkedIn is more expensive than the likes of Facebook and Twitter. 

You can get more granular here than on any other platform, ensuring your ads show to candidates in a particular industry and with a specific title or salary, increasing your chances of recruitment success.

Twitter

While this may not be the best platform to advertise job opportunities, it is a brilliant place to build a network. You can start conversations and search through the responses for potential future employees.

You can post notifications about job openings on this platform, but we recommend using it more to keep people up to date with what your company has been doing. Twitter’s 192 million daily active users largely use this platform to follow companies they are interested in, so sharing company news is a great way to connect with potential employees, particularly if you share the same values. 

Facebook

There are 2.80 billion people using Facebook. While it may be the most popular social media platform out of the three, we recommend that you approach this platform a little differently. 

Facebook is largely used to maintain personal relationships, so you probably won't find as much information about a candidate's work or experience here. However, there will be plenty of industry-specific groups you can join where you can network with candidates. These groups are also a great place to advertise any job opportunities you have. 

You can also utilise the company chat function on Facebook to have informal discussions with potential candidates. That way, by the time you have a vacancy you fill, you may already have a shortlist of people you would like to invite to apply. 

Impact of social media on recruitment and selection 

While there are many positives to utilising social media for recruitment, there are a few legalities of the platforms you should be aware of, particularly if you plan to use them as part of your screening process.

While some candidates will include links to their social profiles in their CV, essentially permitting you to look, you must tread extremely carefully. If you look at a candidate's social media profile and find something that puts you off hiring them, you could be accused of discrimination.

If a candidate does not have privacy settings in place, then the information on these platforms are technically public. Still, you don't want to risk being liable for using this personal information as a reason not to hire somebody. 

Every company that utilises social media for recruitment purposes should have a stringent policy in place so that your employees involved with recruitment don't fall foul of learning information that could colour their opinion of candidates.

You should obtain written permission from the candidate if you want to look into their online activities; however, we recommend not going down this avenue to protect your company. 

Social platforms are a fantastic way to build relationships with individuals within your industry and advertise any available positions within your company; however, we don’t recommend utilising these platforms for screening or background checks on potential candidates.  

If you are unsure how to get the most out of using social media for recruitment or don't have much visibility on these platforms, get in touch with us. We have a pool of active and passive talent across our social media profiles and can help increase your job vacancy visibility.

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