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Social Media Recruiting Tips

Organizations need to broaden online tactics to compete for experienced workers

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Employers need to expand social media recruiting strategies to reach experienced workers online.

While many employers engage with social media as a recruiting tool, many are left wondering just how effectively they’re using it, according to a Human Capital Institute survey. Some post open positions on the most popular platforms, but even those are barely scratching the social media surface. As the competition for talent increases, organizations need to broaden their tactics.

It’s certainly a good thing to let candidates know what job openings are available, but it’s perhaps even more important to use social media to tell your organization’s story. Help potential candidates understand your culture, and let them hear from current employees. Doing so will increase the odds of finding candidates who are a good fit, and it provides job seekers with information they may not have known about your organization.

Think experienced workers aren’t on social media? Wrong — the 50-plus age group is the fastest-growing online segment in the industry, with significant numbers participating in LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.

See also: Looking for a job? Why you need to go social

If one end of the social recruiting continuum is just posting jobs on LinkedIn, the other end is getting rid of job postings entirely in favor of “online communities.” Candidates can sign up to be part of a potential employer’s community to learn more about the organization and in turn share information about themselves.

You may be more comfortable somewhere between posting jobs online and totally replacing them with an online community. So here are some tips for fine-tuning your social recruiting strategy:

1. Tell your organization’s story

Candidates want to know about your culture and what a “day in the life” may look like for various roles in your organization. Get help from your current employees to tell the story about why it’s great to work for your organization.

2. Converse

Give interested candidates the opportunity to converse with your organization online. A “like” on Facebook is nice, but you’re not connecting to potential candidates in a meaningful way. Seek to engage your Facebook community in conversations.

For example, check out the Facebook page for careers at Kimberly-Clark (an AARP Life Reimagined for Work Pledge signer). The company uses the page not only to post insights about its brands and business, but also as a place for visitors to explore its culture through the experiences of its people. The company even offers insight to candidates on post-interview etiquette.

Consider using Twitter to have conversations with potential candidates. Share interesting facts or news about your organization and let the retweets and responses fly!

3. Go beyond “traditional” social recruiting channels

OK, so maybe it’s hard to call anything about social recruiting “traditional” yet, but you do have options beyond the normal channels. For example, AARP’s Life Reimagined for Work Pledge Program connects candidates with employers that have signed a pledge to recognize the value of older workers. As employers grapple with the skills gap, experienced workers could play a key role in closing it for your organization. Join the growing list of companies that have signed the pledge and begin connecting with experienced candidates.

Other sites that are gaining popularity among recruiters include Yammer, Instagram and YouTube.

The Social Recruiting Future Is Now

If your organization is still considering social recruiting or is just dabbling, it’s time to develop a strategy and move forward. A survey by jobvite.com shows that 94 percent of recruiters now use or plan to use social media in their recruiting efforts, and 78 percent have made a hire through social media. Be prepared to dedicate staff resources to your social media tactics — don’t start a conversation and then fail to respond when candidates jump in.

See also: Getting the most out of online job websites

According to the same survey, social recruiting brings bottom-line benefits. Recruiters report decreases in time to hire as well as increased candidate quality and candidate quantity. Sixty percent of recruiters surveyed estimate the value of social media hiring as greater than $20,000 a year.

Whether it’s LinkedIn, Life Reimagined, Facebook or whatever comes next, social media recruiting will continue to grow. The best candidates who have the requisite skills are using social media, including older workers. It’s a great time to jump in!

©AARP 2014

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