Last week I blogged pondering who is vetting the social media jobs, and over the course of the week I began to wonder if recruiters knew about the tools that they had at their finger tips. Instead of doing some work to look for candidates, I saw folks just syndicating jobs into a feed with no engagement and received two awful job pitches in LinkedIn, a tool I thought all recruiters were masters of. For the record I am very happy where I work and have no inclination to leave; and if you are going to take the time to shoot a job pitch my way at least read my profile. How does working in sports and for an online marketing department equate to the 5-10 years of experience in medical PR that you were looking for?
So with that in mind, I wanted to offer some ways that recruiters could leverage social media to vet candidates, do their jobs more efficiently and maybe save the company some green when advertising positions. For the most part LinkedIn will be left out of these comments because I feel recruiters have that one down.
Connect the dots – Much like schoolyard cliques, social media platforms are ripe with pockets of people with shared interests and specialties. To get started looking into these positions, you can click on potential LinkedIn candidates and follow the social breadcrumbs linked to their profile. You can see where they interact with friends with similar interests. You could find links to smaller niche groups on Ning or an industry specific forum that can be a gold mine.
Do some research – Just because you can see where people are going to, doesn’t mean you should jump right in. Observe the conversation and see what the group is talking about before chiming in. If you are a targeted recruiter for say the PR industry, participate in industry chats. #prbc, #pr20chat and #prstudchat are good places to get your feet wet and see how people think before contacting them with a job. There are similar hashtags for other verticals as well.
Twitter also offers regionalized search so you can create lists within X miles from the company that you are hiring for to avoid costly relocation fees.
Think like a flack – The public relations profession gets a bad name for some people sending off-topic pitches to journalists. Recruiters can learn from this by creating a targeted list of candidates to send their pitch to. Much like the bad one I received above, no one like to get junk in their inboxes, and sending less blind emails offers a more efficient vetting process for the company overall.
Don’t hire a bozo – Social networking platforms offer a good chance to get to know who you are looking to hire. Yes, you can find out great anecdotes about people, but you can also find out if the person does things that your company doesn’t want to be associated with. For example you may have someone posting pictures of them hitting a bong over the weekend on their Facebook page or see them disparaging your company on Twitter. Both have happened and wouldn’t it be good to know before you invest time and money in hiring the person?
Image – Fist Full of Talent