Are You REALLY Ready For the Social Savvy Job Seeker?

January 27, 2014 4:45 pm Published by Chris Fields

For a while now, recruiters and HR folks like me have been screaming to the social heavens, advising others to use Facebook and social media as a recruiting tool. Facebook just turned 10 years old in 2013, and it has invested a lot into making itself a platform for businesses as well as “friends.” If you hadn’t been paying attention to the platform for recruiting, now is the time to start.

Many recruiters who were considered “early adopters” started using Facebook as sort of a background checking resource. You’d be surprised at what people put online—and with hiring decisions being so costly, it only made sense to do a little social search before making a selection. In a survey from November 2012, half or all employers were using Facebook in their hiring process. 

Since that time, recruiters have substantially increased their use of Facebook as a recruiting tool beyond the background check. Rayanne Thorn, VP of Product Marketing and Strategy at Technomedia and former recruiter, loves using it as a media source and recruitment tool. People like Rayanne and I have been advising our friends, clients, and associates that they need to be on Facebook professionally, as well as socially, for years.

Of course, what makes the news (or the blog posts on the internet) is the ominous story of how someone lost a job or missed out on a job because of something they shared online. But if you think about it, there are 1.19 billion Facebook users and most of them share responsibly. So it’s not all bad—in fact, it’s all good. 

Finally, after all the nudging, it seems that there is a tipping point, and people are starting use Facebook for more than simply keeping in touch with one another. Job seekers are not only cleaning up their acts, but they are more sophisticated with their social interactions. 

Keeping in mind that more companies are using Facebook to engage their customers and search for talent, job seekers have begun to flip the script. They are logging onto Facebook and creating resume pages for themselves as potential candidates. In addition, they are connecting with corporate pages and joining conversations. They understand that there is a Community Manager, Marketer or HR representative monitoring the page’s activity, and see that as a great way to engage with a perspective employer. 

It’s true that a company’s brand messaging is carried through its public relations, communications, marketing, and, yes, recruitment processes. Believe me when I say that top talent is judging companies based on their social media policies and online presence.

Tweet: Job seekers are flipping the script on Facebook to source prospective employers & create candidate profiles: http://ctt.ec/Tmze3 @work4labs Click to Tweet: “Job seekers are flipping the script on Facebook to source prospective employers & create candidate profiles” http://ctt.ec/Tmze3 @work4labs

Savvy job seekers are mining Facebook for connections within companies whom they can leverage for new and exciting job opportunities. They are “liking” the pages, joining conversations, and even “friending” others on company pages in hopes to make an internal connection. Some job seekers even use other platforms to cross-reference names and companies to gain a competitive advantage.

Socially savvy job seekers flock to UNICEF’s Facebook page when there is a new post about careers.

Make no mistake about it: although unemployment numbers are dropping, there are still millions looking for work, and they are trying new methods to get the attention of potential employers. By engaging talent communities on your Facebook Career Page, not only do you connect better with potential candidates, but you also allow them to get a feel for YOUR company’s culture and communication style. This way the job seeker can determine if you are a match for them. Facebook is growing up and its users are ready to blur the lines between personal and professional. So now is the time to ask yourself: are you really ready for the social savvy job seeker?

Chris

This post was written by Chris Fields