Social Recruiting: Fad or Forever?

April 7, 2014 3:10 pm Published by Chris Fields

What is the next generation of recruiting? Well it’s social, of course. Don’t get me wrong: there will always be those jobs and industries that can be recruited via a sign out front or word of mouth. However, they are starting to be the exception.

Every company wants to get the best worker possible – whether that’s in fast food, retail, construction or hiring top-tier management and even executives – you want the best person for the job. How do you reach top candidates if they can’t see your sign out front?


No one can argue the fact that social networks remove borders and boundaries so you can communicate with people next to you or across the globe. Love it or hate it, social recruiting is the next generation.

As an HR professional and active volunteer with the Society of Human Resource Management, I can tell you the most important and costly decision any company can make is the decision to hire. It’s only smart that a company uses Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google Plus and even Instagram and Pinterest (which are more focused on visual imagery) to recruit, screen, and attract talent. Social media is not just for kids and young people. In fact, the fastest growing demographic on Facebook and Google+ is the 45-54 year age bracket. The younger demographic, however, is moving from Facebook as a playground and onto other social media apps like Cyber Dust, Snapchat, Kik and Whatsapp – and that’s okay. Let them have those sites. Soon we will be talking about recruiters using those as well.

One of my other “jobs” is as a resume writer and career coach. I often ask my clients, “Where do you look for work?” Many times it’s the usual places like Monster and CareerBuilder. They forget that in addition to job boards there are several social networks which they could use to find jobs. I always offer Facebook as a great place to connect with companies. In many ways, Facebook is moving toward a more professional platform. It’s marketing itself as the place to shop, promote and recruit business and talent. Facebook has 1.2B users which is way more users than LinkedIn which has 230M, so even if a third of Facebook users are more business-focused, that’s already more than LinkedIn.

Having a clean Facebook Page can also help you land a job. Here is an article with an infographic which states that 92% of all employers use social media for recruiting purposes.  Here’s another article which suggests 80% of employers and recruiters perform a social media search on you as a candidate. With numbers like that, it’s hard to deny the importance of having a professional Facebook profile – which means clean up the pictures, no illegal activities. Make sure your friends don’t tag you in anything inappropriate, insensitive or down-right nasty. You may or may not have heard, Facebook account settings are more relaxed – which means you are searchable.  So it’s better to be safe than sorry to adjust your privacy settings, especially if you are in the job market.

Social media is the best way for jobseekers to get that next great opportunity and for recruiters to get that next great hire. As each year passes by, a new generation of workers enters the labor force. They will receive promotions and become our next business leaders. As leaders, they will be more comfortable with social platforms and leverage their familiarity, knowledge, and experience to recruit talent through social channels according to their company’s culture and philosophy. I have no doubt social recruiting is the next generation of recruiting; it’s no fad.

What are your thoughts? Do you agree social recruiting is here to stay? 


This post was written by Chris Fields

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