#Asia Social recruiting can help you find talent with great skills and culture fit; Branding and engagement are essential to success


Some sound advice in case you’re looking to hire top talent through social channels

Social recruiting or social media hiring is mainly understood as ‘recruiting candidates by using social platform as talent database’. By viewing a candidate’s social media profile, blog or other internet sites, it gives employers more insightful information and an initial review of the candidate’s personal views and values.

A quote by Dong Karken, Employer Branding and Talent Attraction Consultant and Hire Clix: “Social recruiting is not simple. It means maintaining a fresh, authentic, and accessible employer brand message on 3 major channels; social media outlets, search engines, and the mobile web.”

Whether we like it or not, society is moving quickly toward a digital, social, and on-demand reality. The people we’re trying to “recruit socially” expects us to share only the best information with them on the same channel. They expect us to be ready for them when they are ready to engage us. This could mean there is a possibility that, right now, someone could be ready to apply a job from your Facebook fan page on their iPhone with a simple reply to a post about a job vacancy on your company’s wall.

Also read: [Discussion] I am being recruited by an early-stage startup; Is there a dark side I should be worried about?

Social recruiting is not and endless Twitter feed of job roles and instructions to go to our website or this ‘job board’ to browse and apply to jobs”

This quote basically sums up what you SHOULD be doing for social recruiting:

Employer branding is key to social recruiting

According to a survey done by Jobvite UK in 2015, one in ten of UK recruiters suggest that employer brand awareness is one of the main challenges they face in attracting quality talent. This trend is also happening in Malaysia as well where the young quality talents fight to apply for jobs at L’Oreal, Delloite, P&G and many more. These are all multinational companies that have well known brands in the country, and the expectation that it brings along.

For instance one glaring side effect of a great employer brand is that “people believe that getting hired at big names can ensure career success.”

The question is how can they exert so much expectations to potential candidates? Well, the magic words that MNCs (Multi National Companies) and forward thinking CEOs live by are:

Recruitment is marketing

Recruiters, akin to marketers, know how important it is to make their company visible and rememberable. The image that the company project is the same image that people will view as a potential employer. For example, strong employer brands are perceived to be an excellent place to work at, with good company culture and attractive brand values. All of which is highly reflected by all the company’s outward communication, no matter whether it is for hiring purposes or updates, news, advertising, or social activation.

Companies should remember that it’s not just about getting to know candidates, it’s more on getting the candidates know more about the companies themselves.

Here are more examples on the perks that attract talent (Source: Jobvite Social Recruitment Survey 2015):

Allows candidates to be invested in the company

When potential employees have “pre-engagements” with a company, they’ll find it easier to be able to envision themselves being in the company. Pre-engagements can be things like: going through company websites, having browsed through the company’s social media platforms, have read news or seen other people write or report things about said company, etc. With this, they can better evaluate themselves to see if they can match said company’s values and goals before clicking that apply button.

That being said, your job is to attract jobseekers, not annoy them. Social media recruitment is more than just an endless tread of hashtags about job posts on Facebook or Twitter to lead them to your company’s fan page or company website. It is more than that.

You also need to use more specialised platforms in conjunction with the typical social media platforms

Great platforms to use for employer branding and engagement are professional networking platforms such as LinkedIn. These platforms connect you to candidates from various professions and you can target specific candidates for specific job vacancies much easier than using mass social media platforms for that are more catered for mass marketing.

Mass market social media platforms can be used to communicate the company’s brand personality. How would you want the world to see your company? Is your company the fun out-going type, or is your company the educational, knowledge imparting kind? There are many ways but it all boils down to your brand’s base personality.

Specialised platforms can be used to communicate on a more personal scale. Like how do your leaders of the company think, how does your company address certain issues, or even what the staff of your company have to say about the company or the issues that your company’s business is trying to address?

Also read: Do you run an international team? Here’s how to recruit global talent like a boss

It is the these forms of outward communication that can lead to a potential candidate feeling like they ‘know a little more’ about your company even way before an actual interview happens.

Screen candidates’ social profile on social media

There have been arguments about this. Some argue that employers or recruiters have no right to get involved in the candidates personal life and that the candidate has the ability to be professional at work. Another argument states that the employer CAN and SHOULD look at the candidate’s social media, because this will allow the employer to gain insight into what the type of person the candidate really is. But then again, this is also pretty much industry specific.

For example, if the job concerns a candidate getting likes, and public views (i.e, designers, photographers, artists and presenters), then they should be wise about the sort of content they post or show.

Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat (to name a few) are the commonly used social media platforms as of now (it may change in the near future as it always does). With these platforms, employers are now able to spot red flags about their candidates such as: offensive posts (nudes, racial and discriminating comments), complaints, rants, and vents. As long as the candidate did not turn up all their privacy settings on high, employers are able to use this to see who the “real” person this candidate is.

This makes candidate screening ten times easier.

Even so, employers must keep in mind that anything posted on social media is filtered, so it is wise to reserve candidate judgement until after they’ve come in for an interview. Social media serves as in “indicator” but not really the nail in the wall.

Also read: The growing pains of a recruitment marketplace: An Interview with Upwork’s Bonnie Sherman

In conclusion:

Social recruiting is here to stay

Recruitment is not just about hiring and firing anymore. Social recruiting is part of a cultural shift where people have a presence on two different planes – one in the real world, and the other in cyberspace.

The challenge is to identify whether these two personalities match that one person whom you are trying to hire (or is hoping to be hired)

This new age of recruitment requires more effort, a lot more effort in fact:

  • From attracting (effort to market and project your company’s brand),
  • to interviewing (effort in getting the candidates, screening them through the online world, and then in reality),
  • and then giving the best first impression of the company (effort to make the candidate’s contact with the company match what expectations have been put through on social media).

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The views expressed here are of the author’s, and e27 may not necessarily subscribe to them. e27 invites members from Asia’s tech industry and startup community to share their honest opinions and expert knowledge with our readers. If you are interested in sharing your point of view, submit your post here.

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