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Social Recruiting: Examples and Tips for Recruiting

Social Recruitment: Examples & Tips for Recruitment

Social media has long penetrated all areas - so what could be more appropriate than to use these channels for personnel recruitment? And that's exactly what Social Recruiting does. In view of the frequently felt shortage of skilled workers, this is only logical. If the applicant does not come to the employer, he will plow the Internet in search of suitable candidates. How this works and what advantages and special features Social Recruiting brings with it ...

Social Recruiting: A New Form of Recruitment?

What is meant by social recruiting? First of all, it is a form of recruitment. It is often associated with social media channels, which is why some definitions name the targeted use of social media in finding suitable employees.

Synonyms for Social Recruiting are Social Hiring, Social Media Recruitment or Social Recruitment.

Of course, the aforementioned "plowing through" of social media channels is meant only in the figurative sense, because social recruiting is not stalking. Rather, it's about an uncomplicated form of contact and interaction between potential employer and candidate, in contrast to the classic approach.

In social recruiting, different approaches can be distinguished, which are named differently. In essence, there are two forms:

  • Active Sourcing

Active sourcing takes place by targeting potential applicants. For this purpose, certain data must be available for a person, which can be taken from user profiles. This also means that a human resource manager has previously identified these potential employees through their own efforts and rated them as suitable for their own jobs. For example, the following platforms and channels are eligible for social recruiting:

  • Linkedin

  • Xing

  • Facebook

  • Instagram

  • Reddit

  • Twitter

  • Whatsapp

  • Youtube

This form of social recruiting is sometimes also called social distribution, because it is equally possible for employees to approach an interesting employer or to pass on an interesting job to an acquaintance or, vice versa, to recommend it to the company.

  • Internet sourcing

With internet sourcing, the search for a suitable candidate is much more passive. Here, companies use profile data from social networks to access user data and place corresponding banner ads. The meet then on people who are not actively looking, but theoretically belong to the target group, which is why social profiling is mentioned.

Communication, not the channel is the focus

Recruitment expert Jenny T. notes on her blog that not only countless definitions of social recruiting exist, but many confound two things: social recruiting and social media recruiting.

According to her, the latter refers to the above-mentioned use of various digital channels in the recruitment process. On the other hand, in social recruiting, communication and interaction are the key factors that enable relationships and have been increasingly removed from the application process over the years.

This is recognizable because ...

  •  in job advertisements, no contact details are given by the personnel 

  • on the career side of the company's HR, but not the relevant executives of the respective departments are presented,

  • Application documents such as certificates and CV must be formalized and standardized.

All this would be suitable, just to make no personal contacts and that's exactly what it would be in social recruiting. Her definition:

“Social recruiting is the willingness and ability of individuals to engage in the study of a mutually rewarding professional relationship regardless of their contextual role (for example, employer and candidate) and the complexity of life. The path, the intensity and the final result of the contact are secondary and in practice possible in many ways.”

Nevertheless, it has to be said that this approach does not speak against the use of social media. On the one hand, social media has also been writing its social component since its inception and depending on how one uses the channels, it works better or worse.

On the other hand, social media is dominated by an aspect that is not given in direct, personal contact: many people lose their inhibitions. That's not always positive, see Hate Speech or Shitstorms. But this also means that shy, introverted people who would never appeal to high-level decision-makers in real life are more likely to be reached or even open themselves.

Special features of social recruiting

Who does not have a profile in any social network these days? In fact, the generation of digital natives, which is so interesting for companies, is represented on at least one channel of the above, many even on several, and even older workers often have a Facebook account.

Linkedin and Xing, the first two mentions in the list above, may come as no surprise, after all, these are professional networks. Its predominant purpose is to present itself as an attractive candidate for a job or as an attractive employer in the labor market.

Meanwhile, the recruitment of new employees is taking place via social media altogether, that is to say via accounts that serve or served predominantly private purposes. The big difference: Since these channels do not serve the main purpose of the generation of work or the application, everything is much more informal and relaxed. This promotes the human or social aspect of social recruiting.

This relaxing effect is partly due to the fact that companies are only gradually discovering the possibilities of social recruiting - after all, users were previously "alone". Personnel now register that job advertisements can also be displayed on social networks - often free of charge, in contrast to the print sector or classic job exchanges.

6 questions to the social recruiting expert Jenny T.

We conducted an interview with Social Recruiting Expert Jenny T, a Recruitment Consultant at FP Executive Search & Recruitment Agency Thailand

Ms. Jenny, what are the main mistakes of social recruiting?

Unfortunately, there are still a few statistics on this topic. You have to adapt the communication to the respective medium or channel. A one-page job display for all channels in a 5pt font just does not work.

I would definitely recommend a post that clearly and directly describes the position you are looking for and includes a call-to-action that makes you want to apply. Ultimately, it's about generating attention and arousing sympathy. For further detailed information on the position, it is best to briefly link to the corresponding page via Shortlink; Possibilities are versatile: you can link to the company page, the corresponding landing page, the organic on Instagram, etc.

In addition, the active and fast interaction on social media channels is especially important. Anyone who needs two days to answer a question from an interested party has unfortunately already lost.

How can you avoid it?

That may sound a bit provocative, but: It's all about the right people here. However, this is usually not the classic HR department, but for social media rather people from the field of brainstorming, content production or community management. In order to be able to portray one's own company as an attractive employer, employees must be brought on board who have inhaled the topic of social media and know how to authentically link the lightness of social networks with the Employer Brand Values.

Who is Social Recruiting worth?

In a nutshell - it works for any size of the company. However, the right communication strategy is crucial here. A large international company scores with other convincing arguments. One should stay true to this and point out the corresponding advantages: A local butcher with a small team offers security, a family atmosphere and, under certain circumstances, fast promotion opportunities, while an international corporation can score with business trips, a lot of responsibility and the like.

The reservations of small and medium-sized companies are often based on a lack of knowledge. One reason for this, for example, is subjective prejudices against social media. Here I recommend getting support.

Can you give us examples of successful social recruiting?

There are always great examples of how recruiting via social media works successfully: for example, company xxx, who advertises for new trainees through a funny photo campaign and generates over 3,000 new Facebook fans with concise, funny slogans - of the many in-depth Not to mention applications.

Or another international company, who has found his new apprentices through a video on Facebook. In the clip, you can see him smashing a huge pane of glass - as a pretty distinctive appearance, which achieved the desired effect. Countless likes, comments and, finally, so many good candidates that he has hired instead of the planned two now three new trainees. In both cases, the companies selected an exceptional and creative approach to their candidates to attract attention. The number of success stories is growing steadily.

What does social recruiting cost compare to classic recruiting?

Only a fraction of the cost of classic recruiting. The production of the content does not have to be more expensive than the classically placed print ad. Sometimes it is the mobile video of the boss, who runs through production and introduces employees along the way. At other times, it is the employees themselves who report on their cool projects. By different creative formats, the great atmosphere is transported in the company. Subsequently, the posts are advertised, for example, a small series with little money and supported communicatively in combination with authentic community management.

How much faster is Social Recruiting?

My experience says job applicants are much more agile and compete much faster when the ad and the interest come through social media. With us, the first applications often arrive after one hour. The scope of the application is generally much shorter than in the classic application process.

Thank you for the interview!

Read more about Social Media Recruiting Strategy here