Ask Away: What Do Recruiters Need to Know About Social Media?

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MegaphoneWelcome to Ask AwayEvery Monday, we pose an employment-related question to a group of experts and share their answers.

Have a question you’d like to ask the expertsLeave it in the comments, and you might just see it in next week’s Ask Away!

This Week’s Question: Social recruiting is all the rage — but what do recruiters really need to know about social media in order to be the best in the business? Share your tips and tricks!

“Recruiters need to add value when they reach out to potential candidates on social media. It’s not enough to just say, ‘I have this position available.’ Recruiters are experts in the job search, and they need to share that expertise. Good recruiters use sites like Quora and CareerDean to answer questions and share knowledge. Social media is not about your recruitment sales pitch. The best recruiters use social media to build rapport, become known as people of value, and create a sense of trust and expertise.”

– Stefan Mancevski

“Social media is all about short conversations — some would say small conversations — or even small talk. And that’s great. In real life, many big big things come from small things — even small talk.

“We let people know that being on social media is just like going to a conference or an event — it’s just that it’s on 24-7-365. You have to go in with a plan for what you want to talk about, prepare to listen a lot, adjust what you have to say to fit the situation, and listen some more. You also need to know how to find the people to talk to. This gets easier as you form relationships online, just as it gets easier as you go to the same conferences year after year and run into the same people again and again.”

– Barak Kassar
Rassak Experience 

“Share exciting content, such as an employer branding video or a presentation on your open positions. You can either embed these in your LinkedIn profile or share a status update with the network.

“Sharing extends beyond LinkedIn. If you’re on Pinterest, pin open positions, photos from a recruiting event, or helpful infographics with interview tips. Tweet links to your career center or upcoming events. Instagram the cool swag your company is giving
away to new hires. Keep building your library of content across social media to establish connections with top candidates. Above all, be social and be interesting.”

– Sabrina N. Balmick
Marketing Manager
ACA Talent 

“Social media is about gaining the trust and respect of a candidate — not constantly trying to sell open employment opportunities. Smart candidates research recruiters before responding to an inquiry. If a candidate can’t trust a recruiter based on the content they find online, there’s no way they’ll trust that recruiter with their career.

“Recruiters need to treat their Linkedin profiles like company career pages. Include a nice photo, be personable, and give candidates a reason to trust you. The more a candidate can relate to the recruiter, the more likely they are to respond to a career opportunity.”

– Jon Schneider
Director Of Recruiting Services

“Make job descriptions that are fun. The average worker doesn’t want a boring job at a boring company, so if the description you create is not only detailed, but enjoyable to read, applicants will be even more interested than usual. This is a great opportunity to really stand out among all the other job postings out there.”

– Samantha Lambert
Director of Human Resources
Blue Fountain Media 

“Be available out of office hours. Not all candidates will be able to job hunt via social media during the 9-5 working day. If a recruitment company can reply to candidates out of these hours, it is likely [the company] will experience an uplift in leads from social media sources.

“Remember discretion and privacy. Avoid discussion of specific job details on public social media platforms. It’s better to use this method for candidate sourcing, then revert to email for further discussion.”

– Rebecca Moss
Content Marketing Strategist
Venn Digital 

“While recruiters have a difficult job of weeding through hundreds of applications, I feel they should be ‘slightly’ more lenient on what they find on social profiles. Someone’s LinkedIn profile should obviously be set up in a professional manner, but the vast majority of people use Facebook as a personal networking platform. Therefore, if there are a few misspellings, or a photo [of them] holding an adult beverage, [that] hopefully shouldn’t cause that resume to be thrown in the garbage. Don’t get me wrong: hate speech, illicit drug use, or anything else of that nature should be a deal breaker, but with Facebook, it would be of benefit to many job candidates — and employers — if Facebook were looked at a little bit differently than [we look at] someone’s LinkedIn profile.”

– Bill Fish

“Recruiters need to understand a few things to even be considered players in the social recruiting world. First, you have to be willing to put in time consistently. Then, before you even get started ‘recruiting,’ learn the platform and listen to the users. Each site — e.g., LinkedIn, Twitter, GitHub — [has its] own vibe and user expectations. After all, they are social sites for communication, networking, and conversation. Finally, be tactful in your approach to people. Social media sites are not job boards. Jumping into the party late with a megaphone, shouting, ‘I have the most amazing job ever!’ is not the way to win over anyone.”

– Kristin Kane Ford
Director of Social Media
Kane Partners LLC 

“Recruiters need to know the venues for what they are looking for:

“Facebook is a great place to recruit someone within the social media field, marketing in general, or for specific jobs that they are already doing and displaying that recruiters can sift through as proof of their ability to do the job well.

“Twitter is great for finding the creative types who can look at problems with fresh eyes and [offer] fresh solutions that others might have never found or achieved.

“LinkedIn is an awesome resource for finding people who are making themselves look better than they are. There is a need for this in the
market, and LinkedIn is great for surfacing it. Not every company needs a yes-man, but LinkedIn is a great place to find one if you do.

“Reddit is spectacular for discovering people that didn’t realize they needed to be discovered. Essentially, people on Reddit either create personas that they wish they were, or they really are who they present as, and this is how you get the most information from people. For recruiters, this should be looked at as an untapped resource for finding worthy applicants for specific jobs. For example, if you post a query on Reddit about something that gets traction, there will no doubt be armchair experts in the field who will then pour themselves into a reply. These are a recruiters best candidates for whatever job is related to their posting.

“Obviously, there are other social channels, but I thought I’d give you a quick breakdown of how these are used for finding quality talent in our organization.”

– Alexander Ruggie
PR Director
911 Restoration 

“Rather than spending precious time culling through broad social networks to find good leads, look to vertical social networks. Vertical social networks like Doximity (doctors), Spiceworks (IT), and Edmodo (teachers) are building huge bases because they provide great value to specific industries and have become more of a workflow tool than just a social network. Doximity, for example, has more than 50 percent of all U.S. physicians in its network. And many of these networks have recruiter-friendly services. Doximity works with more than 300 hospitals and health systems to identify and connect with doctors with the right specifications for the position.”

– Lauren Lloyd
Communications Manager

By Matthew Kosinski