Cast a Wider Net - Go Social

Improve Your Hiring Process: Cast Wide Net for Talent by Going Social

Much of what I’ve addressed in my Improve Your Hiring Process blog series to this point has been about bringing efficiency and structure to your hiring process. Not to discount that by any means, as larger groups of unqualified applicants for open positions makes this more important than ever. But, ever think about why so many unqualified applicants end up in your pool?

Resume Blasting on Job Boards

The answer is job boards. Job boards have become the dominant tool for most companies to find applicants. For years, the lure has been getting the most applicants in the least amount of time. On the flip side, job boards present an excellent way for job seekers to have their resume available to thousands of companies, even allowing applicants to auto-apply for positions that match certain keyword criteria.

I’m not suggesting that job boards are bad — they are useful tools for most organizations. The primary issue is that technology isn’t advanced enough yet to determine that a candidate who manages a fast food restaurant shouldn’t be submitted for a “Manager of Global Logistics” position — even though that position has the keyword “manager” in it. So, most of us take the good with the bad…we can get lots of applicants, but we know a majority of them won’t meet our criteria.

The Elusive Passive Applicant

At the same time, the most coveted applicants are those we often refer to as “passive.” They’re employed, but not happy. Thinking about a change, but not yet to the point of acting on it. These folks aren’t trolling the job boards for openings, let alone visiting your career site. Everyone wants to reach these folks, but doing so is elusive for most companies. This is where social media is becoming a major factor.

Over the last few years, much ado has been made about the importance of human capital and intellectual capital. If you think about it, social media allows you to leverage both of those resources simultaneously. If you have good people in your organization today, they likely know lots of other good people, who know lots of other good people, etc. You get the idea. So, why not maximize those resources to find good talent?

Lay the Foundation for Social Recruiting

Making this an effective part of your strategy really relies on having the other elements I’ve discussed in place. You must:

Once those elements are in place, you now have a platform to leverage social media to find those passive applicants. From there, your next step is making it simple for you and your current employees to let others in the various social media circles know about your open positions. This is a step where using an applicant tracking software tool with a solid focus on social media can be invaluable.

The right applicant tracking system will make it very easy for your employees to quickly alert their social media contacts about open positions, including auto-generation of links for those contacts to click in order to learn more about the positions. It will also help track sources for applicants, including those sourced through social media channels. Ideally, it will allow those applicants (if they’re not at a point to proceed right now) to “follow” your company for future job openings. Finally, it will allow you to share open positions via your corporate social media tools such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter.

Going social will ultimately allow you to reach passive applicants, reduce job board related expenses and hire more quality employees. Be sure to look for the next installment in this series…”Keep Your Applicants Informed”.

Image Credit: Paulo Batista (Flickr) CC-BY-SA-2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

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