Evolving Your Social Recruitment Vocabulary
In my last blog post (TSPK101- Expanding Your Technology Vocabulary for Business Use); I spoke about the need for
HR professionals to really understand some of the industry technology terms that are being used in strategic
conversations. As a part two, I want to expand that conversation and drill down a layer further. This post will focus on
deciphering the terminology behind social recruitment.
The term social recruitment was first used as early as 2009, but started to become part of conventional recruitment
strategy around 20111
. Social recruitment has now become mainstream and many vendors now offer social recruiting
and marketing products in addition to their core recruitment management system (RMS) offering. With the increasing
adoption and investment in social recruitment, also comes the necessity to articulate ROI and explain its success. But,
despite data being available through a multitude of channels, many recruitment functions still struggle with compiling
data to answer to the lingering Executive question… Tell me how social recruitment adds value?
Stumped? There’s good new… this is not a quiz!
For a few years I’ve talked about the importance of introducing new metrics into the HR dashboard that can clearly
describe the impact of social recruitment.
Metrics can be the gateway to tell your story. It provides the forum to share success, lessons learned and forecast
strategy based on data. To anchor social recruitment, a new wave of terminology needs to be adopted into daily
operational metrics, performance measures, intake discussions and sourcing strategies make it meaningful.
Not sure where to start? First, let’s examine a few common industry terms that you and your team should know and use
on a weekly, if not daily basis:
Term Description Why is it important?
Measures the click from the initial
link though to the content page.
(e.g. the click from the initial job
posting link on a job aggregator to
the apply button on the job posting
It provides insight into how compelling your content is. The
marketing to get you to click on the initial link may be
good, but if candidates are not clicking through, it could be
due to your content. Companies should use click through
rate metrics as an indicator on what’s working and what
needs to be improved. You want high click through rates
to measure applicant channel ROI.
It’s a unique set of offerings,
associations and values that will
positively influence the most
suitable target candidates to choose
you as an employer. The
proposition must be attractive, true,
credible, distinct and sustainable.2
In a nutshell, it articulates what differentiates your
company from your competitors. Why should someone
choose to work at your company versus a direct or
industry competitor? If you want Manager’s and
employees to become brand ambassadors, they need to
be equipped with EVP marketing messages to promote
Engagement Two way interaction of your
companies brand and content
between the end user and the
Engagement identifies people who express an interest in
your brand and content by interacting with it. It provides
the opportunity to build rapport, creating a pipeline of
candidates engaged with your company brand. Research
shows that engaged employees have higher retention
rates resulting in bottom line savings to the organization
Job Aggregator An on line database that scrapes
and advertises job postings from
company websites at no cost.
Job aggregators have transformed the traditional job
posting model. Jobs from companies are posted in one
central place and are SEO indexed. Companies don’t pay
to advertise job postings, they are there for free. This
makes it more appealing for candidates as all jobs can be
found here regardless of where they start their search
(e.g. Google, Yahoo, Indeed.com, etc.). Job aggregators
provide high source of hire ROI.
Pay per Click
The amount paid when sponsored
content (e.g. job posting) is clicked
on a website.
This helps companies stay within a budget and measure
ROI based on clicks. If you sponsor jobs, you only pay for
what is performing.
Reach Reach is the potential audience for
content based on total follower
count (Twitter, Pinterest and
LinkedIn followers, total Likes on
your Facebook page, etc). If your
boards have 1,000 followers on
Pinterest, then each of your pins
could potentially reach 1,000
Reach provides insight into the visibility of your content as
it is shared (via a like or share) to other users networks.
The higher your reach the higher the probability you will
attract more applicants.
SEO Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
– Is the ability for your content to
rank higher on a search engine
when search results are returned.
Most candidates now start their job search on a search
engine (Google, Yahoo, Khoj, Baidu, etc.). The higher
your content appears in search results, the higher the
probability it will be clicked on.
Social Sharing Sharing content through social
Most websites recognize the power of sharing content on
social networking sites. Social sharing is the modern
version of emailing job postings to networks. RMS’,
aggregators and job boards, now offer the ability social
share jobs on sites such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter,
Talent Brand The highly social, public version of
your employer brand incorporating
what your talent thinks, feels and
shares about your company as a
place to work5
Your talent brand carries more credibility than employment
brand because your employees are advocates or
detractors of the message. Talent brand is important
because it represents a genuine view from an employee.
Tools like LinkedIn’s Talent Brand Index allows companies
to benchmark against competitors to see how your talent
brand is performing to attract and source candidates.
A recruitment product that offers
websites geared to specific roles,
candidate types or locations where
people can register and receive
company information and
Talent communities provide specific branding, content and
messaging to candidates based on demographic
information. While content on talent communities can be
engaging, they also serve as the feeder for talent pipelines
for specific roles.
Use keywords and/or demographic
information to target and attract
relevant potential applicants for
specific roles. (e.g. Call Centre,
Actuaries, Mobile App developers,
Most candidates start their job search on a search engine
(Google, Yahoo, Khoj, Baidu, etc.). Unlike traditional
methods of post and prey advertisements, campaigns
have become a game changer because it seeks out
specific individuals that appear to fit the role profile of the
job. This creates a relevant pipeline and/or applicant pool.
In addition to Google AdWords, social networking sites
such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter also offer these
This by no means, is an exhaustive list of social recruitment terms. It’s really meant to be an introduction to some of the
more common terms you can expect to hear and see in blogs, articles, white papers and research briefs. So the next
time you are asked how reach impacts your sourcing strategy, you’ll be well positioned to give an answer!
If you would like more information on HR metrics, check out my blog post Are You Using Data to Drive Your HR
I’d love to hear from you! Please let me know if you found this list useful. You can tweet me @annzaliebarrett or follow
Ann Barrett, Director Integrated Solutions