Social Recruiting in the Hiring Process

6 min. read

The key to hiring on social media is to cut through the noise and find potential job candidates that will be a good fit for your culture

Social recruiting is all about finding quality candidates online and making connections with them. According to recent research, 58.4 percent of the world's population uses social media, the median user has more than 5 social accounts, and daily use averages 2 hours and 27 minutes. With more people engaging with social media, it is worth investigating its relevance to the recruitment process.

How can you use social media recruiting in the hiring process?

Social recruiting – how to get started

Every company is different and should develop its own unique social recruiting strategy. Here are a few tips on how to get started:

Participate in the right conversations on the right platforms

The key to hiring on social media is to cut through the noise and find potential job candidates. With so many social media platforms available it is important to recognize where to concentrate your efforts. Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are popular sites for interacting with friends and family and may not be considered effective or suitable channels for professional activity.

On the other hand, sites such as LinkedIn aim to highlight individual working achievements. It follows that these sites are viewed as ‘professional’ and are ideally suited to be used in the recruitment process. Being active in LinkedIn groups and using specific hashtags are great ways to get your job openings in front of the candidates you want to apply.

Don’t overlook niche networks

Depending on your company and industry you may find it beneficial to search for specific candidates on niche networks and forums. People tend to form groups online based on personal likes and shared interests. They gravitate towards social media platforms that appeal to their particular interests.

You can use this information to your advantage. For example, Reddit and Twitter users tend to want to engage in dialog and share their ideas on current happenings and trends. Pinterest attracts more visually-minded individuals who create communities around shared aesthetic ideas. Younger professionals tend to be more engaged on social sites such as TikTok.

Promote your company culture

Social recruiting is much more than simply posting an open job role on a company account. You should also be actively sharing content that shows your company is a great place to work so you can attract candidates organically. Your workplace has a unique company culture, show it off and the next time you need to advertise a job position you may already have a long list of potential new hires excited to work with you.

Involve your current employees

It is highly likely that you already have some social media power users in your workplace. Encourage your team to share job openings and hiring information. These interactions help to boost your reach and increase online engagement. You may have strict social media rules in place, but allowing your employees to talk about their experiences in your workplace professionally and responsibly can positively influence potential candidates.

Benefits of social recruiting

In the past, the idea of social recruiting may have seemed gimmicky. Now, hiring on social media is an important channel for sourcing applicants and promoting company culture.

Here are some benefits of using social media in your hiring process:

Wide reach online

Social media enables you to reach vastly more people and at the same time pinpoint candidates who have the credentials you’re looking for. A strategic social media recruitment process can reach millions in a short space of time. Social media tools have been developed to enable recruiters to identify candidates with specific credentials, such as a particular degree, skillset, or level of experience. For example, LinkedIn is essentially a directory of professionals organized by industry, company, job title, and several other useful categories. You can see if a candidate has the experience the role calls for before you reach out to them.

Reach passive and active candidates

Traditional recruiting processes, such as online job boards or advertisements, most often engage only active candidates who are looking for that information. Social recruiting is the best way to find and connect with passive candidates. Passive candidates aren't actively looking for a job, but they may be receptive to new opportunities that pop up on their feed. Social media enables you to spread information about your organization and potential job openings to both passive and active candidates.

Find a great culture fit

Social recruiting allows you to learn about a person’s lifestyle and hobbies, and even conclude what sort of personality they have. You can search for candidates who have the skills you require and who will also be a good fit for your workplace culture. You can also filter out candidates who may raise red flags. Some people behave poorly on social media. You can determine if a potential candidate has an attitude that could damage your organization by reviewing what they share publicly online.

Save money and time

Unless you decide to promote job openings through paid social campaigns, social recruiting can be low-cost or even completely free. Conventional hiring methods such as job fairs and generic advertising campaigns can be expensive and yield fewer results. Social recruiting can deliver the same benefits more effectively and at a lower cost. Traditional recruitment processes, such as cold-calling potential candidates and employee referrals, also rely on the time-consuming process of making one-on-one connections.

Increase your brand visibility

Whether you are actively hiring or anticipating it in the future, you can increase your brand visibility by using social media. With a consistent social media strategy, you can position your organization as a great place to work. Sharing a variety of posts that highlight, for example, a healthy company culture, fantastic benefits, or a focus on work-life balance, will build a positive online brand identity.

Creating a social recruiting strategy for new hires

Social recruiting hasn't fully replaced traditional hiring methods, rather, it is supplementing them. Social recruiting lets you create easy channels to interact with prospective candidates and job seekers, thereby smoothing the hiring process.

Remember, what works for one company, doesn’t always work for the next. Develop a social recruiting strategy as an extension of your broader recruiting and social media strategies, then adapt it to suit your organization and the positions you’re recruiting for.