Don't Fear Social!
Social recruiting is still just in its infancy, despite having been around for almost a decade. But this isn't really all that surprising.
Human beings have a pretty well understood fear of adopting new technologies.
When the printing press was invented, concerned biologists urged monarchs to restrict its use, fearing dangerous, and harmful information overload caused by too much reading!
Doctors warned against trains, as they were convinced the break-neck speeds (15 miles per hour) of this new mode of transport would cause asphyxia induced deaths.
Heck, I am still afraid Google class will lead to a world full of cyborgs that only interact online and only eat Soylent!
And yet, employers are slowly but surely adopting social solutions for their recruiting problems. In fact, as of 2013, 72% of companies reported using social networks to find candidates. Even more promisingly, 2 in 3 companies surveyed said that they planned on increasing their social recruiting efforts (and budgets) in 2014.
Why are so many companies adopting social as a part of their recruiting strategy? Honestly, I think it's because they fear being left behind by early adopters. Their fear is completely valid, especially considering the growing concern among employers that 2014 marks a return of the "war for talent". Fear is a great motivator, but it's a terrible reason for adopting new technology. It's also a terrible reason for avoiding them!
You should adopt new technologies because they work. Because they are effective for solving the problems you need solved.
Does social recruiting do this? Absolutely.
Those 2 in 3 companies expanding their social recruiting efforts are doing so because it works. Well executed social recruiting has extremely high ROI, it's an excellent way to reach mobile candidates (over 70% of jobseekers are using mobile in their search), and sourcing passive candidates with social graph data is becoming more and more effective every day.
At Jobcast, we obviously favor Facebook for social recruiting, but Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+ are all great tools for attracting qualified candidates. None of those platforms offer the targeting or reach Facebook does... But, using several social networks as a part of your recruiting is smart. For example, you can Tweet the jobs you post on your super awesome, fully branded Facebook Career Site!
If you still haven't adopted social recruiting as a part of your hiring strategy, the time is now! It's actually pretty easy to get started, especially as I'm going to provide you with some links to how to guides for all the major social platforms that you can use for recruiting, you are most welcome!
Twitter is a great tool for employers to use in conjunction with other social media. When you post a job on your career site, share content on your Company Facebook Page, or publish a blog post, you can increase your reach by sharing it on Twitter. You can also use hashtags to keep up with trends in your industry.
Natascha Thompson's article, 5 Tips on How to Use Twitter for Recruiting, contains way more than five tips. It gives you all the info you need to get started with using Twitter to hire.
Facebook has the largest active user base of any social network, it has become an essential part of employer branding, and it allows for much more targeted recruiting with the use of Facebook Ads, these are just three of the reasons we think Facebook is the most effective network for employers.
In our free white paper, we provide you with a simple guide to Facebook for recruiting.
I love Google Plus, the way that it is set up makes it very easy to create talent communities, because you can simply create a "circle" for each community you have, and stream targeted content specifically to each circle. What doesn't work so well is how much less "reach" G+ has than other networks. Sure, a lot of people have accounts, but they just don't spend all that much time actually using the network.
Likeable has an awesome Google Plus Cheat sheet that will help you understand how G+ works.
LinkedIn is a great tool for social recruiting. Personally, I struggle with the fact that it isn't very mobile friendly, but it's a network completely dedicated to recruiting, which makes it pretty darn handy.
Susan M. Heathfield's simple guide to using LinkedIn for recruiting is a great read for anyone in HR.
Hopefully these guides will help you to get started with social recruiting, or at least give you more information about which networks to focus your hiring efforts on (Facebook, cough, Facebook!)
Oh, and just to give you all a little more encouragement... I'll admit that my fear of Google Glass is probably unfounded! But Soylent is completely terrifying and makes me sad about the state of the world.