Using Social Media as a Recruitment Channel

Social media is a new wave of internet usage that links everyone in “many to many” conversation using different tools. The most populated sector is the social networking tools like Facebook and Linkedin. Human Resource Managers are beginning to leverage on the large network of professional social network for recruitment and referral.

In the near future, no resume is complete without your Linkedin account or Plaxo contact. These are networks which Professionals, Executives, Business Owners and Technical specialists (PMETs) deposit their resume and connections online. Social media is all about having the conversation over content provided by the respective communities. PMETs form a community on social network is a valuable source of suitable candidates.

Recruitment will reap bountifully from social media strategy in the following ways:

  • Branding as a Choice Employer. Make it a standard practise to have all level of management on professional social network like Linkedin. Encourage senior managers to update their company and designation. Your company’s name will appear more frequently and this will benefit the company in terms of branding as a choice employer.
  • Looking beyond the referral. Do not limit to the referral given in the resume. Research on the candidate’s connection and recommendation. You can authenticate their work experiences and character through the business friends they keep on professional social network.
  • Status and Update. Most professional social networks keep a long history of a profile’s status update. Study the words he use to express how he feel, who he met, projects he has accomplished, etc . The frequency and content of his status speak volume of the candidate’s working attitude and thought leadership in the area of his expertise.
  • Network is powerful. The extent of a candidate’s network is a result of his constant networking effort. If he claims to spend extensive time in China, does he has considerable contacts from the same country? If a Marketing communication Manager has good media relations, he would have at least a score of media and press connection to his profile. The quality of a candidate’s professional social network is clear evidence to his past work’s achievement.
  • Advanced and Targeted Search. The speed and depth of search engine with the professional network is geared for matching the job requirement to the best candidate. Use keywords and limit your advanced search will filter out your potential candidate within seconds. Another point to note, while you are recruiting through advanced search, your competitors may also be filtering theirs. Some of their filters may include your current staff.
  • Different tools for Different levels. True blue social network like Facebook may be the best tools for recruitment of entry to mid level executives. Facebook has 2.6 million users in Singapore alone, placing Facebook ad based on pay-per-click may be the most effective compared to the mass media or online job portals.
  • Portfolio Showcase. If you are evaluating a consultant for hire, try research on his online contribution to blogs, wikis, presentations and proposal on portals like Slideshare and Scribd. Check out the number of view, downloads and embed his portfolio enjoy is a clear indication on his thought leadership.
  • Business Socially. Many search firms are using professional social network to connect with other recruiters and hirers. If you are a head hunter, forming an alliance with your peers will reduce your time and effort looking for a candidate for your client. On another front, make connection with potential hirer and be on your list. You never know when they will contact you for their recruitment.

Lastly, Social Media is not a Strategy or tactics, it is just another channel you can utilise. If your company has a hiring page for position, spread the news via social media platforms like Facebook Fan page. Engaging potential candidate social before meeting up professionally is an emerging reality.

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The Impact of Social Media on Online Dating Portals, Dating Agency Owners and the Singles

The rise of social media and its growing impact have more bearing on businesses which operates on “online connectivity” especially the online dating sites.

To avoid a long-drawn discussion, I summarise the different effects on online dating sites, dating agencies and the singles with the following:

Online Dating Portal

-       Online Dating sites need to be connected to social platform like Facebook through applications or Facebook connect.

-       Social media adds many more faces to a person than just an online profile picture

-       The existence of mutual friends means no more elements of mystery

-       Social media opens up new creative ways of meeting people you do not know (eg. Foursquare.com)

-       Online dating sites need to reach out to mobile community (iphone and BB) by having a mobile (scaled-down) version of their web

-       Sign up process must be made easy by using Openid log-in

Personalised Dating agency

-       Owners now have more potential candidates to source from

-       More referral checks can be done (plaxo.com & linkedin.com)

-       The presence of social groups will enable event organisers to have a core networks and motivate these to take ownership of the event (ie. One core member invite 3 others)

Singles

-       More business and pleasure can mix due to linking of professional and social accounts

-       More choices but harder decision now

-       Taboo of changing relationship status from attached to single once relationship doesn’t work out (the whole world knows)

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People – 1st “P” of Persona Management

Be a People’ Person.

Always strive to be a connector, not just ask for connection.

Ask for testimonial from those you serve, but give it generously without being asked as well.

Take stock of the people you already know very well:

  • List of people who will help you even if you call them at 2am
  • List 10 most connected friends you have
  • List 10 most trusted suppliers/vendors
  • List 10 most reliable partner/associate
  • List 10 most wanted customers
  • List 5 countries you have most contacts in
  • List your 10 best business friends

(if you cannot complete this list, you aren’t connected enough!)

Visual the people you have yet to meet:

  • Know who you need to have you in your network
  • Know them before you really need them
  • List the future vendors you may need
  • List the best possible client you want to serve

(if you can see them in your mind, you will meet them in person one day!)

Ensure you have Linkedin updated 100%

Who you sow may not be who you reaped

Always make a difference in someone’s life as much as possible, even though they may not mean much to you.

Your personal branding is the majority of collective mind share whenever your name is mentioned.

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Mine the Links for the real Gems

How you, the hiring manager, can use social-media networks to support your recruiting efforts and pick winners.

- Brand yourself as an employer of choice

- Look beyond the referral

- Check status updates

- Check for thought leadership

- The power of networking

- Narrowing your search

- Targeting different levels

- Forming alliances

For the details of this article, please look out for Human Resources Magazine, August 2010 issue, page 47.

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