The rise of social media recruitment

Andrea Christie-David, the managing director of Leor In Home Early Learning, has first-hand experience with the power of social recruiting.

She recently shared the job ad for a senior leadership role on social media and notes the engagement was impressive. “I found a single post resulted in around 20 to 30 candidates applying for a role,” she says.

“We’re growing fast, so we recruit new staff every week. Now, we don’t just list new positions exclusively, even for senior management roles. We always share on social media because it delivers results.”

Social media platforms are now heavily used by recruiters to find and sort through talent.
Social media platforms are now heavily used by recruiters to find and sort through talent.CREDIT:GETTY

Social recruiting utilises social media platforms to share job postings, while also using them as a tool to research talent and network with potential candidates. Increasingly, they are being used by firms to complement traditional means of recruiting.

“Used as part of a broader recruitment strategy, social recruiting can help to increase the visibility of a job post,” says Jay Munro, Head of Career Insights at Indeed.

“Particularly in certain fields such as media and tech where people may be looking at their social channels for job opportunities.”

It’s about to become even more important for businesses to amplify their talent searches following new immigration policies that came into force in July 2019.

This will heighten competition for local candidates. In this tighter candidate market, businesses that use new strategies such as social recruiting alongside traditional online recruitment tools give themselves the best chance of finding great talent.

“Social media should be an important channel the HR team uses when looking to recruit new team members,” says app developer Steve Molloy from Lomah Studios.

“Positive social media exposure also helps create an engaged employee workforce. So, aside from using social recruiting, businesses should consider how they leverage social media to drive thought leadership and communicate their business purpose to encourage employee advocacy.”

Molloy explains this can help attract top professionals and drive a positive company culture in which staff are inspired to be brand advocates.

“Encouraging employees to share company posts across their own social media profiles builds the business’s authenticity,” he adds. “Studies show employees are more than twice as trusted as a CEO, senior executive or activist consumer.”

Dene Menzel, the creative director of audio-visual firm Branthem Creative, says social recruiting has benefits for companies and candidates alike.

“They give jobs and candidates more visibility and increase the chance of the right candidate being matched to the right job. It also means businesses can find the right staff in a shorter amount of time,” she says.

It’s important, though, for both candidates and businesses to recognise different social media platforms have different applications when it comes to attracting quality candidates.

“LinkedIn has become a company culture profile amplifier rather than a first port of call for finding people looking for jobs,” advises Molloy.

While social recruiting can result in a good flow of candidates, it has its limits. “You might receive a large number of applications for a particular job posting on social media, but the quality of applicants can vary,” says Munro.

“And without a method in place to respond to unsuccessful applicants, the candidate experience can suffer.”

He also warns it’s important to keep in mind that not everyone is on social media, so there’s a risk you could be missing out on reaching potential talent.

As evidenced by recent research by Indeed in conjunction with Lonergan Research, the majority of Australian job seekers find out about opportunities by searching online job sites (54 per cent), while only 11 per cent cited social media as their usual method of finding new opportunities.

Used effectively, however, social recruiting can be a good way to stay ahead of the competition in a market that’s hungry for great people.