Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and MySpace are excellent places to obtain a media presence to attract a variety of workers. In 2007, Sodexo, which provides services such as food service and facilities management, started using social media to help spread the word about their company culture. Since then, they have saved $300,000 on traditional recruiting methods. 1 Sodexo’s fifty recruiters share updates on Twitter about their excellent company culture. Use of this media has driven traffic to the careers page on Sodexo’s website, from 52,000 to 181,000.
The goal of using social media as a recruiting tool is to create a buzz about your organization, share stories of successful employees, and tout an interesting culture. Even smaller companies can utilize this technology by posting job openings as their status updates. This technique is relatively inexpensive, but there are some things to consider. For example, tweeting about a job opening might spark interest in some candidates, but the trick is to show your personality as an employer early on. According to Bruce Morton of Allegis Group Services, using social media is about getting engaged and having conversations with people before they’re even thinking about you as an employer. 2 Debbie Fisher, an HR manager for a large advertising agency, Campbell Mithun, says that while tweeting may be a good way to recruit people who can be open about their job hunt, using tools such as LinkedIn might be a better way to obtain more seasoned candidates who cannot be open about their search for a new job, because of their current employment situation. She says that LinkedIn has given people permission to put their résumé online without fear of retribution from current employers.
Creativity with a social media campaign also counts. Campbell Mithun hired thirteen interns over the summer using a unique twist on social media. They asked interested candidates to submit thirteen tweets over thirteen days and chose the interns based on their creativity.
Many organizations, including Zappos (Video 4.4), use YouTube videos to promote the company. Within the videos is a link that directs viewers to the company’s website to apply for a position in the company.
Facebook allows free job postings in Facebook Marketplace, and the company Facebook page can also be used as a recruiting tool. Some organizations decide to use Facebook ads, which are paid on a “per click” or per impression (how many people potentially see the ad) basis. Facebook ad technology allows specific regions and Facebook keywords to be targeted. 3 Some individuals even use their personal Facebook page to post status updates listing job opportunities and asking people to respond privately if they are interested.