Social Media Recruiting Strategies – Four Mistakes to Avoid
By: Brandon Chesnutt
It’s no secret that I spend a lot of time evaluating and auditing company websites and social media programs. More recently, much of my energy and effort has been focused on helping organizations improve their social media recruiting strategies. After analyzing the efforts of dozens upon dozens of companies big and small, there were several instances where companies did a lot of things right (which is positive and encouraging). Unfortunately, there were also a number of key areas where companies often miss out on important opportunities.
How can you ensure your company gets the most out of its program? Here are four very common mistakes companies make when it comes to maximizing their social media recruiting strategy:
Leveraging only one website page to showcase your company’s culture, environment and perks.
While social media channels help to curate conversations and share stories about your culture, your organization’s recruiting and careers page is often the final destination for potential candidates. What I often see is companies try to condense everything about why someone should work for them onto one page. This is a daunting task. Moreover, combining a one-paragraph description of “what it’s like to work here” with a simple bullet point list of perks and benefits will likely do little to sway more passive candidates who may be vetting you as a potential employer. If your goal is to convince a professional that leaving their current job and joining your company is the best decision they’ll ever make, discussing your culture, work environment and people should not be relegated to just one page. Instead, it should play an important role in your digital strategy on an ongoing basis via blog posts, social media updates and more.
Using your LinkedIn Company Page simply as a job board.
With LinkedIn’s content sharing options, organizations of all sizes have a great opportunity to share news, milestones and successes with current employees, partners, customers and potential candidates who are following the company on a regular basis. Unfortunately, many organizations are guilty of simply posting job after job on their Company Page and doing little to tell great stories about what’s happening inside their four walls. Talk about a missed opportunity. If a candidate were to land on your LinkedIn page at any point in the job search process, or be referred to the page directly from a job posting on LinkedIn, showing timely and relevant content can help to create a great first impression.
Selecting stock photos over real employees.
This topic is definitely up for debate. But, hear me out first. I often see stock photos used to represent real employees on the careers section of company websites and across social media channels. In the majority of cases, their use makes me cringe. I can instantly tell the person I’m looking at does not work at your company, and I bet many others feel the same way. While stock photography is inexpensive, easy to acquire and full of attractive models, their use essentially boxes in your brand to a certain look and feel that may not be accurate. This issue bleeds over into social media as images of people and workplace activities are often a focal point. Another painful truth: There is nothing stopping another organization from using the same stock photography. That woman with the suit you picked to represent your quality engineers? She is likely being displayed on other websites (drag the picture into Google Images if you want to see what I mean). If using models for creative is unavoidable due to fear of turnover or other factors, consider staging your own photo shoot with talent. That way, all images are unique to your brand and owned by your organization.
Posting jobs that are not shareable on social networks.
“You’re interested in this position? Well, to view the job description, go to search and select this market. Then, select the department followed by office location.” Does that conversation sound familiar? When a new role is posted on a company job board, recruiters and employees should be encouraged to share it via any channel they see fit, including social media. Unfortunately, if new jobs are not easily shareable and do not offer the option of permalinks, it makes the process of spreading the word very complicated. Identify a software solution that provides the flexibility to easily share and promote job openings. There will be stronger connectivity between your brand’s recruiting efforts and its social presence. Additionally, if your organization offers a referral incentive, employees will be better equipped with the appropriate tools to point potential candidates directly to new job listings.
Where have you seen companies drop the ball when it comes to their social media and digital recruiting efforts? Which social media recruiting strategies and tactics would you avoid?