How to attract top talent with social recruiting

June 26, 2017 Susan Hilliar


We are no longer working in a job market that is dictated by employers; it is the candidates who lead the way. This is due greatly in part to the introduction and development of social technology.  Therefore, there needs to be shift in how organisations recruit new employees.


Social recruitment is not a new concept. However, it is mainly being used for two purposes: generating a database of candidates and broadcasting employer brand messages. Some companies are using it to engage with potential candidates but there is still a lot more to be done.


Currently, the UK has the lowest employment rate since 2005 and with the uncertainty surrounding Brexit, people are becoming cautious about moving jobs. Therefore, it is up to the recruiter and HR to find potential candidates and convince them that their company is the best option.


The role of a recruiter and HR needs to adapt to these shifts in the market. Employers need to develop recruiters’ skills to include the use of social technology as well as nurture new skills that are required for working in a candidate-led market.


Recruitment is an experience


Companies are already using social platforms for promotion, but recruiters themselves need to enhance this.  There is now a need for recruiters to have sales and marketing skills. A recruiter is no longer the person who guides candidates through and explains the recruitment process, rather they act as a custodian of the brand.


Recruiters and HR need to give an authentic picture of the company and what it is like to work there. In the end, candidates will just find out or look for previous employee’s opinions on sites such as Glassdoor.


Beyond this first contact, recruiters also need to have the skills to properly manage a candidate and their experience, responding quickly to candidate’s requests and needs while upholding the company image.


Advocate internal collaboration


HR and recruitment needs to become a more integral part of the rest of the business. Recruiters are now able to rely on other colleagues and their networks to gain access to a wider pool of candidates. And this can all be done using new social tools. Rather than basic automated processes, these tools will facilitate a shift to candidate relationship management; recruiters will manage candidates like sales leads.


Organisations cannot afford to overlook the importance of referrals and recommendations. This can be a very effective way to generate potential candidates. Referrals support the company’s brand and reputation as employees are recommending the company and the benefits of working there to external candidates. This also offers a positive insight into your workplace. However, if the candidate is not right for the role and company, it will reflect badly on the employee. Recommendations are never made lightly.


The use of social technology does not stop there, it still plays a vital role in the final on-boarding stage. Social technology can help prepare the candidate for their first day on the job by conversing with managers and colleagues. Thus, decreasing the employee dropout rate.


Whilst in the company, social tools are still essential. They can be used for internal communication and internal social networks.


Utilise data and social analytics


Recruiters should not overlook the utility and importance of data and analytics. Gathering more data on potential candidates through test answers, career history and performance in previous roles enables recruiters to better identify the candidates that would be the best hires.


Companies can also see which candidates applied through which social platform, allowing the company to determine which areas they should invest more time and money. A unified talent management system allows this data to be analysed and shared across recruitment, performance, learning, succession, on-boarding and compensation.  


To effectively utilise social technologies to help the recruiting process, it takes more than just having a company LinkedIn page. Recruiters are now brand ambassadors who need to work with their colleagues and make use of all available data and analytics to make the best hires.


About the Author

Susan Hilliar

"Some of the best stories come from the most unlikely sources – always be curious, always ask questions” ​​​​​​​ Susan Hilliar is Head of Public Realations at Cornerstone OnDemand, as a corporate communications professional she works with Cornerstone’s clients across Europe.

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