By AJ Forsythe, Founder and CEO of iCracked
Social media has transformed the way we source information, meet people, and find jobs. In the technology industry the most attractive potential candidates are those who have grown up and evolved with digital. These are the people that don’t see Twitter as “just another social media channel”, but as a social search engine to which they contribute, engage and network. In our industry, we want potential candidates that are mobile and digitally savvy and if they are open to proactive engagement on social channels, we know they tick these boxes.
We want to hire these people because they have an innate understanding of how technology businesses work and have worked hard to make sure they stand out from the crowd. Maintaining a good presence on social media is one of the ways they do this and it makes them immediately accessible and attractive to us.
How is it better than more traditional methods?
Recruitment used to be about jumping through hoops but today it’s about having an authentic conversation. Traditional recruiting tactics don't work for companies like ours.
Social media is an ideal place to start to start that conversation. It’s transparent, direct and immediate, and gives both the candidate and the company a clearer picture of whether or not they’re right for each other. We can get a well-rounded, honest picture of what a candidate is like and they can immediately get all the information they need about us and our people.
Which particular platforms are best?
We use different platforms for different types of recruitment. Like many other sharing economy businesses, we use Facebook and Twitter to recruit the customer-facing candidates, in our case, our iTechs. Thanks to the targeting tools social media offers, we can clearly define who we are looking for and reach them with relevant content. For example, if a bakery wanted to hire someone, they could reach people who had expressed an interest in baking (on social channels) and lived nearby.
Alternatively, if we are making a corporate hire we will turn to LinkedIn. We can have a clear picture of a person’s experience and skills without even asking for their CV. It saves us a huge amount of time so we can recruit and scale much more quickly.
What are the "do's" if you're going to use social media to find potential employees?
Be honest and act quickly. Make sure you portray the opportunity and your company fairly. Sourcing and hiring good talent is one of our highest priorities, and we want to make sure the conversation is started in a positive, truthful and authentic way. It will ensure your conversation with the candidate is honest and that there is no upset down the line.
It’s also vital to make contact as soon as you know a candidate is interested. Job seekers using social media will be exposed to innumerable digital adverts daily so making sure they remember you is key.
What should you avoid?
Avoid having several different people handling a recruitment conversation on social channels. Your candidates need to feel reassured about the opportunity and this means communicating with a consistent voice, tone and register.
How can social media be used for human resources within a company, i.e. what are its other uses, aside from finding people to bring in?
Social media lets your employees help each other and can massively benefit the company culture. Our 2,000 iTechs use Yammer to share learnings, tips and tricks and 90% are active on a daily basis. It’s not only helped our iTechs to be better professionals but has developed a culture of helping each other out amongst the team.