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Employee Recruiting 3.0 - breaking down silos


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A short research paper on how businesses are using social media in their employee recruiting practices.

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Employee Recruiting 3.0 - breaking down silos

  1. 1. fourstudentsfour one oneprofessor four fourcommunity partners one one#twitterjobfair + awhitepaper a outlining best practices of social media for employee recruitment employee recruiting 3.0
  2. 2. John LeMasneyDefining Social MediaSocial media, as defined by Kirstin Hunt, is networking sites are just the web tools that en-interactive media. It includes online social able this shift.networks that allow personal connections andopen discussions. Specific platforms or chan- Most research on social media suggests the startnels are not mentioned in most definitions for of its success was around the late 1990s; how-social media as the tools for connecting and ever, it really began centuries ago with word-conversing are constantly changing. The pur- of-mouth. John Steinbeck details the history ofpose is still the same, regardless of the tech- word-of-mouth and how it is simply storytelling.nology. Li and Bernoff, authors of Groundswell, And now, with social media, the world is movingsay that social media is the platform that takes back to where it all started.the power from companies and puts it in thehands of individuals and communities. Social1
  3. 3. It’s not a FAD. It’s here and it’s BIGSocial media (including blogs) captures 80% of social interaction online (Greiner, 2011). PeopleAmerican Internet users’ time online, according to want to connect and not just surf anymore.the Social Media Report. That’s double the amount Not only will candidates potentially want toof time spent on online games (Nielson, 2011). connect on a social network, according to Ca-Time spent on social networks is growing at three risa Miklusak, an emerging media consultanttimes the overall Internet rate: the average user for CareerBuilder, they expect employers to bespends 55 minutes per day on Facebook (Menden, there (Hunt, 2010). It’s true. Candidates are us-2010). In our survey, every respondent reported ing social networks whether employers are orthat they participated in at least one social net- not. Every one of our survey respondents hadwork (SMRG, 2011). Social media is not just for searched for a job on at least one social net-the early adopters anymore, it’s for the masses. working site. Social media is “no longer just theFacebook, in particular, is growing at a rate of shiny new object in the toolbox, social mediaapproximately 700,000 users per day (Menden, recruiting has become an integral part of hiring”2010). (Zappa, 2011) .According to Carisa Miklusak, an emerging media consultant for CareerBuilder,Job candidates are no different than the average “Companies that don’t embrace social mediaInternet user, according to The Globe and Mail. as a recruitment tool might risk losing qualityIn a recent article, Greiner reported that today’s candidates to their competition” (Hunt, 2010).job candidates are tech-savvy and want to find In certain industries where the unemploymentjobs the same way they find everything else—by rate is low, such as in skilled trades-dependant sectors (Lajoie, 2009), this could be lethal. 2
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  5. 5. Job Seekers vs. CandidatesOnline classifieds have lost trac-tion compared to social net-working sites. According toNielson only 2.9% of Americansspend time on online classifieds.While job boards still fill a ma-jor need, such sites tend to at-tract mostly active jobseekers(Sentementes, 2011). Compa-nies need to appeal to the 53%of the workforce that are opento a new job but are not active-ly looking, according to Jobvite(Murguia, 2011). Often, thesecandidates are also the top tiercandidates. Jennifer Ricci, vicepresident of employee experi-ence at Kobo Inc., was quoted common belief that social media is chosen because it costs lessaddressing the idea of finding (SHRM, 2011).quality candidates through so-cial media. “More than likely, the Employers are Onboardmost desired candidates are notsearching job boards or reading The good news is that employers have already started to make thisjob ads. They are networking shift. “More and more businesses are stepping into the social mediawith their colleagues, reading arena to recruit viable candidates for positions at their companies—industry news and contributing and having great success, according to social media gurus” (Hunt,to online industry discussions. year, p. or para.). The SHRM poll reports that 56% of organizationsSocial media is the vehicle by are using social networking sites to find candidates in one way orwhich we can reach the top tier another. In 2009, that number was only 34% (SHRM, 2011). Evencandidates by influencing them more impressive is that almost two-thirds (64%) of businesses usethrough their trusted networks” two or more social networks in the recruitment strategy. (McIlvaine,(Greiner, 2011). When employ- 2011) Nearly 90% of employers have plans to use social media asers were surveyed by SHRM a recruiting tool in the near future (Adams, 2011). Employers aretheir results agreed with Jobvite. committed and their budgets are following. Avature reports that jobThe number one reason employ- marketing and advertising spend (including job boards) has beeners are using social networks for reduced by 65% since 2009. In 2009, more than 70% of all hireshiring is to recruit passive can- were made through the Internet; print is losing relevancy as it ac-didates. This is contrary to the counts for less than 15% of all hires (Menden, 2010). Businesses 4
  6. 6. 5 know that social media is where the candidates are, they see it is better for passive hiring, they see that it is more cost effective, and they see it as a place to recruit higher quality candidates. Not only did companies experience a 53% suc- cess rate in recruiting through social networks, they also reported finding higher quality candi- dates (Atenta, 2011). In fact, they reported hir- ing one in ten of the candidates found through social media versus hiring only one in ten of can- didates found through other channels (Zappe, 2011). This can be attributed to many factors. Social media users are 12% more likely than average to have graduate education (Nielson, 2011). However, education level is not the only reason that candidates found through social media are higher quality. The main reason is the referral nature of social media. Most companies consider referrals the most important indicator in evaluating candidate quality (Atenta, 2011), and social media is an enabler in this process. In the CareerXRoads survey, 27.5% of external hires reportedly came from social media refer- rals. As a bonus, employees recruited through social media, “last the longest, have the best match with expectations, and churn the least” according to Jobvite CEO Dan Finnigan (Adams, 2011). Social media referrals work because they are trusted, according to Atenta that reported 78% of Internet users trust peer recommenda- tion. They also work because messages have the ability to spread easily through word of mouth, and according to Pew Internet the aver- age American has 634 ties in their overall net- work, each one helping to spread the message. FreeFoto5
  7. 7. Industry Comparisons ing. Recruiting via social media is about culture, and culture building takes time. “Social Media isRight now, recruiting 3.0 is not equal across the a process not an event” (Menden, 2010). Socialboard. Not every industry is experiencing the media allows a company to show its personality.same results with social media in the recruiting “You start to engage a candidate in a way youprocess, nor are they adopting it at the same never could with a recruiter (or an ad) because ofrate. Health care and social assistance agen- (social media’s) scalability and the ability to havecies are utilizing social media for recruiting the a two-way dialog,” (Hunt, 2010). Culture and per-most (21%). Surprisingly, only 13% of techni- sonality can seduce someone already employedcal industries are using social media to recruit elsewhere to take note, moving a passive joband only 3% of construction, mining, oil and seeker to an active one. One third of all companygas companies are using it for this purpose. Cu- digital followings, friends and fans are due to anriously, publicly and privately owned for-profit interest in their corporate culture (Atenta, 2011).organizations are more likely than government If someone likes your brand, even if he or she isagencies to use social networking websites to employed elsewhere, he or she is more likely torecruit potential job candidates. Lastly, larger pay attention to job notices from a company andcorporations are adopting 3.0 strategies faster more likely to spread the word to their personalthan smaller companies (SHRM, 2011). network. A great example of promoting a culture and not a job is the Pink Glove Dance video pro-Building a Culture FIRST duced by Providence St. Vincent Medical Centre in Portland, Oregon (Providence St. Vincent, 2009)Making the shift from traditional recruiting The video was produced to generate awarenessmethods to recruiting through social media re- about breast cancer, and it did, but at the samequires a shift in how recruiting is done. It’s no time it also showed that it could be a fun placelonger about placing an advertisement in the to work, that staff work together, and that theclassifieds and sifting through applicants. It no employees care about community and even thelonger happens in isolation from the rest of the facilities in which they work. Social media has be-business and it is no longer timed specifically come a major component of that organization’sto when the company has a specific job open- employee recruitment plan. 6
  8. 8. Channel ChoiceThe top four social media chan-nels are Facebook, Twitter, You-Tube and LinkedIn, but the listdoesn’t stop there. Our surveyresults surprisingly included amuch smaller social networkingsite called Kijiji. In fact, 83% ofour respondents had used Kijijito look for a job, whereas Face-book and LinkedIn where onlyused by 33% of the respon-dents, Twitter only 17% andYouTube 0%. However, whengetting away from job search-ing and looking at only SNS us-age, Facebook was the winnerin our survey (Appendix A) with66% of the respondents using is the leader in this. It allows employees to speak for themselvesFacebook more than 2 times (Dodd, 2011) The most popular SNS for job search and classifiedsper day, whereas Kijiji was only is currently LinkedIn. It generates about 73% of hires according to1 per month. Nielson reports Jobvite’s data. Just 20% came from Facebook and 7% from Twit-that Americans spend more time ter. (McIlvaine, 2011) However, the SNS that accounts for the moston Facebook than on any other referrals that lead to hiring was not LinkedIn, but rather (State of the Media)Twitter had surprising results in The most successful recruitment campaigns combine several socialour survey as well, in that 40% media channels and do not focus solely on one or the other.of the respondents use it andthey use constantly throughout Trends Talkthe day. The world of human resources recruiting is changing at rapid speed.YouTube should not be written The industry is going to see more trends emerge as platforms foroff though due to our survey recruiting, such as mobile marketing and gamification. Both ofresults. About 31 million Ameri- these are being adopted by larger corporations already; however,cans watched video via social they have not reached mass market yet as recruiting tools. In thenetworks in May 2011, so there near future, employers should anticipate the move to mobile andis potential in video (Nielson, the interest in custom applications and branded games that height-2011). When looking to develop en the culture of the company.a Culture First approach, video Another trend that is surfacing in 2011 is digital job fairs. For our7
  9. 9. paper, we hosted a Twitter Job Fair to test the idea. The employer, 14 Theories, was happy with theease of how it worked, and they did receive some word-of-mouth marketing from it. By the end of thehour-long fair, they had 1 hopeful candidate interested who otherwise would not have connected withthe company. Unfortunately, it was not a successful hire, but the employer did report that he woulduse a Twitter Job Fair again in the future. Digital job fairs may not work for every industry though. Thistest was with a web development company with a highly digitally engaged target market. Industrieswhere the candidates are not so digitally engaged may be trickier and slower to adopt.On a much softer scale, we are seeing labels and hashtags (for Twitter) being used specifically forthe recruiting process that allow candidates to find openings, leads and even cultural references forcertain industries. 8
  10. 10. ConclusionSocial media has been denounced for beinginexpensive, and it is. But social media is notcatching on just because it is cheap. It is nowintegrating human resource recruiting into thecore of the business and not just as a stand-alone unit. It is integrated and ongoing. Wheth-er a company starts with a blog, creates a videoand / or hosts a digital job fair, social media 3.0is already happening.Social media can be successfully used for em-ployee recruiting; however, the best successescome from using social media tools in non-tradi-tional ways compared to traditional classifieds.As we see classified sales drop, candidates areseeking the companies they want to work forand they are eager to find out the culture ofthe company. Social media allows employers tofocus on showcasing their culture, which willattract the right candidate for the right reason,not simply because there was a job opening.Social media is about finding candidates whoare not necessarily looking for a position. Thisis something that could be extremely valuablein industries where the unemployment rate isconsiderably high, such as in the skilled trades-dependant sectors. Following on the histori-cal roots of word-of-mouth marketing, socialnetworking sites aid referrals, leading to morequalified candidates and better hires. It is im-perative that employers now empower theiremployees to be part of the recruiting process.Encourage them to talk about openings on theirFacebook statuses, tweet about it, take andpost videos of the lunchroom, if appropriate. Wade HarrisRecruiting 3.0 is not just the human resources departmentanymore, it’s everyone’s business.9
  11. 11. Reference ListAdams, Susan 2011, More Employers Using Social Media to Hunt for Talent, Forbes, 13 July.Atenta 2011, Social Recruiting & Employer Branding – 10 Reasons to Engage, Wollmilchsau, viewedAugust 2011 <>.Crispin, Gerry & Mehler, Mark 2011, 10th Annual CareerXroads Source of Hire Report: By the Numbers, Ca-reerXroads, viewed August 2011 <>.Dodd, Paul 2011, Best way to use YouTube for recruiting? Let your employees speak for themselves, Head2HeadCanada, viewed August 2011 <>.Greiner, Lynn 2011, How to use social media as a recruiting tool, Special to Globe and Mail, 6 June.Hampton, K, Sessions Goulet, L, Rainie, L & Purcell K 2011, Social networking sites and our lives, Pew Internet.Hunt, Kristin Gunderson 2010, Finders keepers: social media strategies help find top talent, Journal of PropertyManagement, vol. 75, issue 6, pp36-40.Lajoie, Don 2009, Skilled trades shortage feared, The Windsor Star, 20 October 2009.Li, Charlene & Bernoff, Josh 2008, Groundswell: Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies, Har-vard Business School Press.McIlvaine, Andrew R. 2011, Do Friends Let Friends Recruit via Facebook?, LRP Publications, 25 July, viewedAugust 2011 <>.Menden, Stefan 2010, Social Media Recruiting and Employer Branding: Survey results, presented at 13th WorldBusiness Dialogue, Cologne, March 18, 2010. <>.Murguia, Anne 2011, More Social Profiles Now Submitted with Job Applications, 25 July, Jobvite News, viewedAugust 2011, <>.Nielson 2011, State of the Media: The Social Media Report Q3 2011, NM Incite, viewed August 2011 <>.Providence St. Vincent 2009, Pink Glove Dance, viewed August 2011 <>.Sentementes, Gus G. 2011, More companies mining LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter for social recruiting effort,The Baltimore Sun, 14 August.Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), 2011, SHRM Poll: Social Networking Websites for Identify-ing and Staffing Potential Job Candidates, 20 June.Zappe, John 2011, New Survey Finds That 89% Are Using Social Media in Recruiting, 12 July, viewed August2011, <>.Zappe, John 2011, More Employers Than Ever Recruit on Social Networks, viewed August 2011 <>.
  12. 12. Social Media BestPractices forEmployeeRecruitmentSocial media is about finding candidatesnot seekers.Social media leads to higher qualitycandidates and hirers.Recruiting 3.0 is no longer the respon-sibility of the HR department, it’s timeto break down the silos. November 20, 2011 Lindsey Fair, Faculty Advisor Matt Landers, Research Lead Chris Green, Researcher (Advertising) Olga Dolia, Researcher (Marketing) Casie Jones, Researcher (HR)