How your social media can help recruit talented team members

How you find new employees and engage with your wider community is moving onto digital channels—and communicators should be leading the charge.

How to encourage social media ambassadors for recruiting

Does it feel like everyone’s trying to hire from a shrinking pool of talent right now?

There’s a good reason. As of April, there were 1.6 million more open jobs in the U.S. than workers to fill them—and openings have outpaced workers for more than a year now.

The result can be a hiring bottleneck that keeps your brand from reaching its goals. To cope with the talent shortage, you need to build brand awareness and trusted relationships with potential applicants the same way you do with customers.

Here’s how to position your brand to capture job seekers who are ready to make a move:

1. Understand your target job seeker audience.

You know which skills, education, and experience your employees need. Use that information to do market research so you know where to find prospects on social media.

LinkedIn is an obvious place to start, but depending on their interests, you may find your potential candidates on other platforms—and not only Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. For example, the U.S. Army is now using short videos on TikTok to meet its recruiting goals.

Once you know where to find your recruiting audience, your next steps are social listening and content creation. Listen first so you’ll know what topics resonate with your audience. Then you can create content that meets those goals and fits the social media platform’s format—short text for Twitter, videos for Instagram and articles for LinkedIn.

2. Let job seekers know who you are.

You don’t need a recruiting pitch in every post, or even in most pitches. That’s because most of your audience will probably be passive job seekers, people who aren’t looking to change jobs, but who might make the switch if the right opportunity comes along.

Showcase the meaningful work your company does. Profile team members to show how they’ve grown. Demonstrate your community volunteering or mentorship. Build a stream of content that raises awareness of your brand, and of course, always include a call to action.

Starbucks offers a good example. Its Instagram video on the company’s military family stores shows how they connect a community that often feels disconnected by frequent moves. The video mentions recruiting vets and military spouses, but the CTA isn’t a link to the careers page. It’s an invitation to join the program’s Facebook group. It’s not a hard sell but a way to build relationships with passive job seekers.

3. Show job seekers why they should consider your company.

If you have competitive pay, great benefits, perks like on-site wellness, or a track record of launching people’s careers into the top ranks of your industry, create content that highlights those strengths.

You can combine this with employee testimonials, as well. How have your company’s strengths helped them achieve work-life balance? What has working at your company done for their career path?

Are you an award-winning company? Let your audience know. For example, video communications brand Zoom features its Glassdoor Employees’ Choice Top CEO award at the top of its careers page.

4. Show job seekers you’re paying attention to them.

Job seekers today want to work with companies that listen to their employees and take their feedback seriously. To win their interest, you must be responsive—especially on social media.

Claim or set up your company profiles on job sites such as Glassdoor and Indeed, and share content on those profiles. Accenture features four videos on its Indeed page that show how its employees can be themselves, create future tech, change the world and be part of a diverse workplace. Make time to respond thoughtfully to reviews on these sites, too. Responding shows potential applicants that your company is listening.

If you don’t have employee reviews yet, encourage your team members to get the ball rolling. Glassdoor offers a free guide to running a review encouragement program, complete with message templates, so you don’t have to reinvent the wheel.

5. Invite your audience to work with you.

On social media, keep your message brief, list specific requirements in the hashtags, and save the extended descriptions for the people who follow through to your careers page. This Spokeo Instagram job ad is a good example.

A full pipeline of engaged prospective applicants is the key to avoiding hiring-crunch related slowdowns, especially in a saturated market. So, automate your recruitment-oriented marketing and keep it going at a steady pace whether you’re actively hiring or not.

Always-on marketing to potential employees also reminds your current employees of all the good things your company offers. That’s important because your team members may be passive job seekers, too. You want them to keep choosing your company.

 Bonnie Moss is president and founder of Moss Networks (www.mossnetworks.com). Follow on Twitter @MossNetworks.

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