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The Impact of Social Media For Recruiters

The social media tidal wave has hit every industry and every role like a tornado in recent years, but what does it mean for recruitment? Gone are the days you walk into an agency for a sit down appointment but is this a good thing or has the art of interaction been lost in the medium?

A recent survey conducted by ‘jobvite’ indicated that a whopping 93% of recruiters either use or are planning to use social networks as a channel for recruiting candidates.

So let us first look at the positive aspects of this not so new medium;

1. It’s cost effective – most social networks don’t cost much or anything to market/advertise on

2. Viral is infectious and the internet’s best friend – the reach and coverage available through social networks is unmatched by any traditional method

3. The speed of your outreach is immediate

4. The scale of candidates you can reach is uncapped

5. The majority of jobseekers use social platforms as a way to self-promote and search for roles

6. Your competitors are available to view in the same arena

7. The opportunity to grow your brand or brand perception in the marketplace is huge

There are other lesser benefits but these are the key headliners for your recruitment business to consider if you are not already dipping your toes in the sea of social.

With this in mind can there be any negatives? Yes and No.

The negatives;

1. Social networking may appear easy and fast but to traverse this territory well you need to apply time and effort – it takes time to grow a community and time to search and invest in your candidates

2. Digital is phenomenal but not without peril – be fully versed in the legal compliance aspects that effect you and the people you are seeking

3. Emotional intelligence isn’t as transferable across the web – how often have you seen a potential client and had an instant gut reaction by the demeanour of a person? Does one get the same from skype or WebEx?

4. Social networks invite you into an individual’s personal space – how objective are you about someone’s social profile and how real is the perspective you are gaining insight to?

5. How accurate is the data you are viewing? How easy is it to present an inaccurate view of oneself i.e.: lie through the process – do you as recruiters therefore need a rigorous qualifying process to support this medium?

6. Your brand has to be attractive to the social platforms and role seeking candidates – it is no longer a recruiters market whereby you hold the gold and the jobseeker is at your mercy, now candidates are assessing whether they want a recruiter like you, so your brand has to work hard to ensure that you are at the top of your game in your market

So where is the middle ground? What is the balance of good and bad for recruiters looking to optimise their growth through social networking platforms?

1. Be balanced – don’t abandon ship on all other methods for digital because surely that is the way forward right? Wrong, social networks should be an addition to your recruitment toolkit not a replacement

2. Design your social strategy before you launch – don’t be premature and leap before you look, first impressions on digital are irrevocable think about where you want to sit in this ginormous playing field and what your plan of attack is going to be. What is going to make the difference to your business and who do you want to be?

3. Adopt a personality and tone of voice that suits your brand for this medium but don’t lose professionalism – street recruitment is not cool it’s dicey and looks ever so dodgy

4. Don’t forget the rules – social platforms are so free it’s very easy to get lost on a hype of activity and before you know it your telling potential candidates what your Friday night plans are…retain the golden rule of thumb, don’t say on a text or social forum what you wouldn’t say face to face. This works for personal and business.

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