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How to use social media to improve your IT recruiting strategy

Sharon Florentine | March 18, 2014
Social media is ubiquitous in today's digital world, so you can bet your next star employee is out there sharing, liking and tweeting. Here's how to leverage social networking technology to effectively target and recruit IT candidates.

In today's digital world, social media is everywhere. The technology has transformed almost every aspect of our lives — from communication and collaboration to marketing and sales tocustomer engagement and service.

Even professional networking and job search tactics have shifted to take into account sites like LinkedIn. But for businesses, just having a presence on social networking sites isn't enough, says Jason Berkowitz, vice president of client services at Seven Step Recruiting Process Outsourcing (RPO).

To attract the top quality talent, businesses must engage candidates through venues like social media to sell them on the merits of the company and its mission, Berkowitz says. And one way to do that is by developing an effective social media hiring strategy.

"An old advertising adage is that half of your advertising budget is wasted. The problem is, you don't know which half. The same is true for recruitment and social media." — Jason Berkowitz, Seven Step RPO

Deliver More Than Just Job Postings
"The goal should be to both make potential applicants aware that you have jobs available and to also show what it's like to work for your company — showcasing the company's personality and culture," Berkowitz says, but that involves more than just posting an endless stream of want ads.

"You should focus first on creating a 'human face' for your brand to create real-time conversations with candidates and be authentic as possible. Show the true benefits of connecting with your company's accounts and make it a personal experience for candidates," Berkowitz says.

It's important to remember that a social media recruiting strategy will become a two-way conversation between the company and potential hires. Unlike traditional media or advertising, the goal is to create a conversation with potential candidates, not just push content to them.

"Social media also allows for connections with candidates in a more personal and engaging manner," Berkowitz says. "Social media can be used to form relationships with candidates and create an outlet of communication that may have not have been available before," but remember that communication like this goes both ways.

Expect that candidates may offer you feedback on your recruiting and hiring process as it evolves, and they may come up with questions, concerns or issues you hadn't thought of. That's why it's important, Berkowitz says, to make sure your messaging and communications are consistent.

It's especially important to have a social media expert skilled at responding to applicants and customers, someone with marketing, communications and social media experience who can act as the company's mouthpiece in a professional, yet engaging and cordial way, says Kimberly Samuelson, director of enterprise content management strategy at Laserfiche.


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