Hiring the perfect candidate is rarely easy. It can be a time consuming, not to mention expensive, process, and with some of the more specialist roles, you may not really know where to start. Finding qualified candidates in industries such as technology, finance and engineering can be particularly challenging, as jobs in these sectors often require specific knowledge and expertise. 

There is furthermore a skills shortage in a variety of industries. For instance, within the tech sector, around 70% of employers within this industry are facing skills shortages. About a quarter of these businesses find that this shortage impacts their recruitment too. So what steps can you take when you need to hire someone for a specialist role, or in an industry with a skills shortage?

Many businesses are finding that less traditional methods of recruitment are becoming more successful, such as hiring through social media. This is particularly true of smaller companies, who can feel like larger organisations, with their bigger budgets, are attracting a large percentage of their target audience. 

If you’re new to using social media as a business, don’t panic! The team here at Pineapple Recruitment are well versed in hiring through social media, so have outlined the basics for you below:

The Benefits of a Social Media Hiring Strategy

There are a number of advantages to using social media to recruit new employees. We all know how wide an audience you can reach via social platforms - over half the world's population use social media, with over 420 million new users signing up each year. And the average time people spend on social platforms per day is around two and a half hours. Most people have access to their social feeds via their smartphones too, so will be able to check in at any time. 

It’s also interesting to note that almost 80% of job seekers will use social media to find a job. Millennials in particular find this strategy effective - 73% will successfully find a job using this method. LinkedIn is the obvious choice, with 40 million people using this platform to search for jobs each week, but other social channels can be just as effective.

Clearly, social media is a popular resource, and not just in regards to catching up with friends. We’ve explored three of the top benefits of using social media to attract quality candidates below:

1. Reach Passive Candidates

A passive candidate is someone who is not actively looking for a new job, but would be open to the possibility. Using social media can help you connect with such individuals and reach a wider audience overall. Perhaps the most useful social platform for this is LinkedIn, though channels like Twitter and Facebook can also be utilised to reach your target demographic.

2. Build a Talent Pool

Another benefit of using social media for recruitment is that you can build up a talent pool, even when you’re not currently looking to hire someone. You can grow your audience, so that when you post about vacancies in the future, you should get interest straight away.

3. Save Money

As mentioned above, recruitment can be expensive.  According to Glassdoor, the average cost of hiring a new member of staff is £3,000. Expenses will include things like posting the job advert, and the time it takes for the hiring manager to track down qualified candidates. But if the applications are coming to you directly through social media, you won’t need to cover a lot of the normal hiring costs. 

hire using social media

How to Use Social Media in Recruitment

When it comes to using social media as a method of recruiting, there are a few different techniques you can use. These include things like building up your brand, as well as keeping up with the latest market trends. It can take a bit of time for you to gain much traction with these methods, but the results should be worth it!

It’s also important to mention that candidates won’t just be looking for job opportunities on your social media pages, they’ll also use these platforms to get an idea of your company culture. And any poorly worded posts, or even comment threads, may be enough to cause negative opinions of your business to form. So make sure you carefully curate each of your social platforms, and then try out a few of the following techniques:

1. Build Your Brand

In order to attract prospective new staff, they’ll need to hear about your business or job opening. A great way to ensure that you have a bank of candidates available when you are hiring is to build up your brand on social media. This means creating an identifiable business identity, which needs to be human and relatable. You may therefore wish to post things like discussions of life in the office, and introductions to various team members.

2. Get Staff Involved

To get some momentum going, it’s sensible to ask your staff to comment and share your posts. Your employees can essentially become brand advocates, discussing your business, sharing success stories, news, and much more.

3. Look for Trends

Another thing to think about when using social media for recruitment is trends in the market. This is in terms of both social media in general and recruitment specifically. So to engage with your audience on social media, get to know the various marketing techniques. And when it comes to recruitment, people no longer see job satisfaction as a perk, and aren’t necessarily looking for a job for life. So advertise things like your flexible working hours, and any other benefits the role comes with.

4. Experiment With Social Platforms

It’s important to remember that different social media platforms will be useful for different things. LinkedIn is generally a good place to start with recruitment, but in terms of platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, you may need to experiment with posting, to see which one gains you the most traction. The question is, which platform do people in your industry, and therefore your target market, use the most? 

Overall, social media can be a fantastic tool for recruitment, as long as you use it effectively. For more help and advice on hiring quality candidates, via social platforms and otherwise, get in touch with us today!

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