The Role of Social Media in the Hiring Process

While social media has been around for only less than 25 years, it greatly influenced many aspects of human life. Businesses haven’t been the same since the social media boom of the early 2000’s and are now actively engaging with customers on Facebook and Twitter.

Social media grew beyond the simple objective of meeting new people. Even the Queen of England is currently looking for a social media manager to better connect her with her fans.

With built-in platforms like a marketplace, a job listing board, and social groups, social media has evidently become a viable business tool. Social media has even made an impact on the hiring process, changing the way employment is handled for good.

A Place for Business

Social media essentially refers to computer-based technologies that promote the exchange of thoughts, ideas, and information. It is an internet-based platform that allows people to connect with one another through networking and online communities.

With 2.45 billion users as of the third quarter of 2019, Facebook remains to be the biggest social media site, while Youtube, WhatsApp, Messenger, WeChat, Instagram, and Twitter closely follow. Over the years, these platforms evolved to become necessary channels in hiring strategies.

Social Recruitment versus Traditional Hiring

The traditional method of recruitment usually involves paper applications and resumes. The employer posts an ad or receives potential leads, and applicants come to the office for a face-to-face interview with the hiring manager.

While the traditional approach gets the job done, it also has its limits. Job ads usually have a narrow reach and extend only to talents within the area. It might not even get to top talents, who likely won’t look at the classified ads if they are already happy with their jobs.

On the other hand, social recruitment can quickly reach a large number of people, whether they are looking for a job or not. Witty posts, interactive content, and even a sneak peek of the company culture can help job postings and companies go viral.

This also improves referral traffic, enhancing the company’s online reputation and attracting more top talent. Posting advertisements online usually comes at no cost, making it an excellent choice for small and medium businesses.

There are several factors that make social recruitment an advantageous method of hiring.

Job Ads Board

An infographic from the Brighton School of Business and Management illustrates that 94% of recruiters used social media to hire employees.

Most social media platforms have built-in job ad features that can match potential recruits to prospective employers based on the digital data they provide, such as skills, experience, and location.

LinkedIn specifically focuses on users’ career development. Users not only get to create their resumes through the site, they can also widen their professional network through social interaction. The site’s most unique feature is the career board, which allows users to search and apply for jobs.

Following suit, Facebook recently added a job recruiting platform to its current array of features. This allows small businesses to hire talent by publishing and boosting jobs and collecting information about prospective employees.

Network of Right Candidates

Perhaps one of the biggest advantages of using social media as a hiring platform is connecting with the most suitable candidates. Employers that market themselves as industry-specific and niche-specific brands can easily attract potential talents.

More than that, recruiters can easily find and assess additional information on the prospective applicant, such as by looking into the applicant’s social media profiles. However, they should use this tactic sparingly, as some applicants may see it as an invasion of their privacy.

While checking a candidate’s social media profile is a viable way to verify an applicant’s background and evaluate their personality, employers shouldn’t use them as a sole basis when making hiring decisions.

Employers can instead look at the candidate’s submitted profile. A professional online profile says a lot about the candidate’s work ethic and proactivity. Employers simply shouldn’t ignore potential talents who take the time to put themselves out there.

Immediate Response

What social media essentially achieves with its job ads platform is the ability to instantaneously respond from users. The share option on social networking sites allows data to be disseminated faster, changing the way we provide and receive information.

Facebook and Twitter made it possible to answer queries faster than ever from prospective employees. Responding quickly to customer queries improves consumer options and helps applicants get through the hiring process much faster.

With social recruitment, applicants also get real-time updates on their applications. Candidates get feedback whenever the hiring manager has accepted or reviewed their application. They also receive a message when they are up for an interview or when they are hired.

Marketing Strategy

Other than a platform for sharing job listings and other content, social media is also an effective marketing tool. What a company includes in its social media content impacts its recruitment process, allowing it to tailor its content and better attract ideal candidates.

Bringing employees into the conversation also increases engagement, further attracting talent. One company that smartly marketed itself is Dell: their Facebook page spotlights its employees and even includes employees’ quotes, photos, and answers to frequently asked questions about the company.

Similarly, Taco Bell highlights the contributions of its employees, posting pictures of employee selfies while in uniform across different social media platforms. This shows that a creative approach to promoting a career within the company increases user as well as employee engagement.

Fresh Talent

Employers constantly look for fresh perspectives, and a younger workforce can offer just that. Born into a digital world, most millennials grew up on social media. Their exposure to this globally connected realm provided them fresh insight and innovation into various fields.

The younger workforce also tends to pick up technology faster, making it easier for them to adjust to rapid external changes.

Hiring millennials can also be cost-effective, as they have less work experience. A Workplace Culture report from LinkedIn shows that this generation cares more about company culture than salary.

When they take pride in their work, the younger workforce can be quick to share their sentiments though online posts, increasing company exposure. It’s another great and cost-free way to promote the company and attract potential hires.

Hiring through Social Media

To better hire top talent, recruitment managers need to utilize online hiring strategies.

As a majority of hiring managers and job seekers now use social media in every aspect of their lives, social recruitment is now replacing many of the more tedious and lengthy aspects of the traditional hiring process.

Social recruitment is seen as a convenient method of hiring, as candidates no longer need to leave the comfort of their homes to apply for jobs. With online job platforms that support professional profiles and portfolios, candidates can receive feedback in just a few clicks.

This is also an advantage for companies, whose social media content can draw in the best candidates and promote the brand. Social media’s wide reach, communication tools, and marketing potential make it a viable hiring tool for both organizations and prospective employees.