Anyone else notice that LinkedIn is starting to look a lot like CareerBuilder lately? It just feels like all I see these days are people shouting via BullHorn Reach about the job they are posting or “sharing” new positions at their company via JobVite, which let’s be honest, is the same thing as the positions listed on CareerBuilder!
When you couple this with the fact that every other day another company is launching social recruiting tools it makes me wonder why we aren’t using social the way it is intended. I use LinkedIn to stay connected to coworkers and read great content they are sharing about business. And I can understand the need to overlap, I mean, it IS a professional social network and sometimes professionals change jobs. But, I come for the content, not the job broadcast.
This is a major frustration for me because there are about a bazillion job boards in the world. And yet, so many companies are using LinkedIn and Facebook to regurgitate their jobs. Does anyone think that Oreo would use Facebook to re-air their Super Bowl Ad? Never. Gonna. Happen. The reason is that Oreo and other large brands know that social is, well, social and the brands who do it right are focused on developing compelling content that will engage their audience in a conversation about their brand or industry. They do this by understanding their audience, offering them a real glimpse into the company and sometimes, in the case of Lays’ recent “Create Your Own Flavor” campaign, they offer their fans a way to impact the company.
We, here at SME, like to tell people that you have to earn the right to talk about yourself. We advocate that a good portion of the content on your social channels be curated ultra helpful content for your audience from third party sources. By doing this, you respect your readers and have a better chance of generating some engagement or at minimum affinity. When you don’t take this approach, it shows in your brand engagement. So, why are the world’s biggest, most sought after employers treating their social channels like a job board?
Social recruiting done well can lead to a higher caliber of candidate
My guess is that it is the path of least resistance. It is ready-made content and there are so many ways to simply automate and walk away. But big hiring entities care deeply about making good hires and are making solid strides to developing a candidate experience throughout their recruitment process. So, it must be the ease of content creation via job regurgitation. But truly, this is a massive missed opportunity for these employers. I have first hand knowledge that social recruiting done well can lead to a higher caliber of candidate and a strong candidate experience.
Social recruiting is an opportunity to educate candidates. Candidates who desperately want information and insights into the company that they might end up spending 40-60 hours of their weekly life. Reading a website and then going to GlassDoor.com should not be the only option. (Because, you all know they are reading GlassDoor!) There should be a middle ground. Social media can offer candidates an inside look at a company before deciding to apply to a position of interest or ultimately accept an offer. It is incredibly expensive to re-hire talent and it is an incredible drain on recruiters to sift through thousands of unqualified resumes. With social, you can begin to head off some of these issues by sharing content that will allow people to opt in or out.
Social media can offer candidates an inside look at a company
Social media also offers a level of transparency that is unachieved anywhere else. Recruiting gets a very bad rap because of the “Black Hole”. You know what I am talking about, the feeling that despite being a candidate for a position, your application has been lost in the recruiting website black hole. But when you develop smart response models, social media can help you manage your candidate community without it feeling like a black hole. This level of transparency is something that is scary to HR departments and exciting for candidates. Being able to go to an employer’s Facebook page and find the status of your application sounds like a communications disaster in the making. This doesn’t have to be true. It is all how you respond.
Social recruiting just isn’t yet living up to its promise. We need more employers engaging in a dialog on social channels and keep their postings where they belong. Creating content is the answer. Educating your candidates in an authentic way about what it takes to be part of your company will deliver real results to your HR department. Save the postings for the job boards. Use social to develop and enhance your employer brand. <end rant>