New Year’s RECsolutions – social media
Over the past 12 months, social media has continued to be the big trend in recruitment and much has been written about its power to make recruiter’s lives easier as well as massively extend the pool of talent available to them and their clients. Indeed, according to a recent study by US recruiting technology provider Jobvite, 94% of recruiters use or plan to use social media to hire new employees in the next 12 months.
So, as it’s the New Year and the time for making resolutions, we thought we’d look at some of the key trends for social media in 2014 so you can make sure you stay ahead of the curve.
Where are your candidates?
Undeniably, social networks can be a great way of identifying, engaging and ultimately hiring candidates, but only if the right candidates are actually there in the first place. Recruiters need to know where their audience hangs out online and across what platforms –this has always been a challenge. To date, too many recruiters continue to source on too few social networks, limiting themselves to the big three – LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. Platforms like Google+, Instagram and Tumblr (to name but three) should all have their place within your social strategy.
You need to know all the platforms that your community visits and tap into the stream to find, identify and attract the best talent. This ultimately means that for social recruiting to be a success, recruiters are going to have to come out of their comfort zones and be prepared to adopt new techniques and try new networks.
Be part of the community
While recruiters are getting used to posting more jobs on networks like LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook, the challenge for 2014 is for them to learn how to fully embrace engaging with candidates on these platforms.
Over the next 12 months there needs to be a greater emphasis on content as a recruiting tool. The current growth in the UK economy means we are predicting a skills shortage in certain areas, so combine this with the fact that more people are using a range of different channels to upload their CVs and scout for jobs and you need to make sure that your online presence makes you look like the right place to be uploading a CV.
This is where relevant, targeted and engaging content comes into its own; it makes you look like the people to go to. On top of this it’s great for your SEO. Google has been tailoring its algorithm for some time to respond favorably to social signals. Whenever someone tweets, Likes, shares or comments on a form of content, that information is validated in Google’s eyes and rewarded with a higher ranking.
Mobile is the future, so make sure you’re ready
With the rising penetration of mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets, candidates increasingly want to use these devices to apply for jobs. With recruiting Millennials being an increasing trend, the mobile platforms will be key as this group spends more time accessing social networks from mobile devices than from desktops. If you want to go where the talent is, you’re going to have to think mobile for 2014.
And don’t forget that while it’s easy to play down the importance of branding, the candidate experience begins with your employer brand. The first thing most job-seekers do before applying is “Google” the company they are applying to. What they find is the first impression you’ll make on them. Why is this relevant here? Because you need to ensure that your messaging and experience is mobile ready… if it isn’t then you’re letting yourself down.
It’s not just an add-on
One final piece of advice for 2014, and for those recruiters who have not yet heeded the social media message… it’s hugely important to develop a fully integrated use of social media as part of your overall recruiting strategy. Social media should not be thought of as an add-on or an after thought, but instead it should be seen as a crucial part of your overall recruiting strategy.