Social Media Practices for Recruiters

When you're recruiting employees, you're always looking for possible applicants to fill the jobs you need to fill with competent and qualified future employees (or exceptional candidates when possible). You need to keep an ear to the ground and use every possible avenue of recruitment to find people who are qualified for various positions.

Recruiters have the advantage of finding lots of potential employees quickly through social media. 98% of Americans use social media, and LinkedIn is the dominant business social media site and fourth biggest social network in general. You can easily find candidates, if you know how to look.

Find people

Clearly, it's easy to find people on social networks – but where should you look? It's usually best to stick to social networks that have established business presences. In most cases, this will include Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and perhaps Tumblr (especially for artistic fields). Myspace and Google Plus are two more options, but they reach smaller audiences (in the case of G+) or do so in less professional ways (as with Myspace).

Where are you likely to find the candidates for each particular job? Facebook can be a great way of reaching people, but people are wary about privacy and who might see that they're looking for a new job, since coworkers and friends are often in the same networks. LinkedIn is a very safe option for career professionals, while Twitter might reach a younger or more casual demographic, and Tumblr is bursting at the seams with creative professionals.

Behave yourself

When looking to recruit people, you don't want to simply send out spam, meaning link after link to job postings without any personal presence. You want to establish yourself and show your personality, as well as sending out job postings now and again.

Don't spam people with advertisements. If you have a message asking if someone is interested in your job, don't send it to more than one person – tailor it to each individual based on their resume and profile, and if they say no, don't be persistent.

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trong>Use site-specific tools

LinkedIn has the most comprehensive tools for employers to use when seeking new talent, including LinkedIn Talent Advantage. You can post jobs for a small fee, buy job credits, and search for candidates. Join groups that relate to the appropriate industries, interests, or careers. Add as many connections as you can – don't forget former employers, coworkers, or employees, current clients of your business, friends and family, and acquaintances. You can let people know through your status updates that you're looking for someone in a particular field.

Facebook offers the Facebook Marketplace, pages that people in the required fields might have joined, and the ability to search profiles or employment history. If you're not turning anything up, you can post an ad through Facebook that is targeted to a very specific group of people, including gender or age.

Twitter doesn't offer as many searching options, but you can include key phrases that others are searching for (such as “hiring an intern” or “looking for a designer”) to find jobs, and people can easily retweet your message to their network. You can include hashtags such as #design or #NAJ (“need a job” in Twitter-speak) to find people who track those tags.

Final tips

Once you have found candidates, use social media to check out their profiles and what they're all about. People are often freer with their personalities on social networks than they would be through a resume or when coming in for an interview, so it's a great way to pre-screen applicants.

Don't limit yourself when trying to find the best employees for your company. You can use social media to find candidates, evaluate whether they will fit with your company culture, and contact specific people or invite applications from larger groups for a job posting.

Image Credit: khalid Albaih of Flickr

About the author: This guest post was contributed by Matt Pittman on behalf of Matt is a freelance writer with extensive experience in advising clients on social media. For more information on executive recruiting, visit their website.


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