How do you attract talent?

by External30 Sep 2013

Talented and savvy potential candidates will seek all avenues to assess whether key corporate messages correlate with their personal values and professional aspirations. Fiorella Kresevic of EI Group outlines the crucial attraction phase of recruitment in the social age.

As we progress through the 21st century, we come to face the realities of the recruitment industry. Just 15 years ago, SEEK was all the rage, being one of the newest and most effective online recruitment platforms. Today, SEEK is battling against the latest recruitment channels which have entered the market, especially, social media.

So, is social media really taking over the recruitment industry?

LinkedIn is the world’s fastest growing social media platform for business professionals with “two new people joining LinkedIn every second across the globe”. Employers are often using it as a way of bypassing recruiters. Linkedin’s selling point is that it allows the employer to go directly to prospective employees at a fraction of the cost, if not for free. It also means they have complete access to a huge candidate database that they once had to pay recruiters for.

Employee referrals are an effective recruitment strategy, particularly when it is supported by rewards and incentives for the employee taking such initiative. Utilising the resources you already have to refer potential candidates to your business is a proven success. This method encourages connection between your employees, the market and the business. But how do your employees advertise job openings to their social networks? They will most likely use social media to post updates and gather interest. This could include LinkedIn as well as Facebook and Twitter.

Talented and savvy potential candidates will seek all avenues to assess whether the key corporate messages correlate with their personal values and professional aspirations. They will often turn to company social media pages after browsing through corporate websites, sometimes even before!

As an employer it is equally important to engage with current and future employees, particularly Gen Y & Z, using social media as a tool to maximise your efforts in promoting your employer brand. Amanda Woodard reports that at “Firebrand Talent, a recruitment agency for marketing and creative industries, 45% of placements last year were made via social networking.”

There is definitely an underlying view that large online job boards are going to become less effective in the future as social media networks take over. There are currently over 300 industry specific job boards across Australia and clicking the ‘submit’ button is much too simple. You can easily find yourself being bombarded with applications with no time to sort through them. If you regularly recruit and struggle to efficiently manage the volume of applicants that flow into your email inbox, we recommend you consider whether an e-recruitment platform would assist with this transactional activity. Good e-recruitment platforms can automatically filter applicant information from SEEK and other job boards into your system. They will also correspond with the potential employee as they progress through the recruitment process, ensuring professional first impressions and good communications.

The ease of applying for a job means that as a business, it is important to consider other ways you can harness recruiting innovations, such as social enterprise platforms to improve communication with potential candidates. Employer branding is the answer to building a large talent pool. A business should strive to maximise their ability to attract talent to their business without relying on recruitment agencies at all. This approach requires a recruitment strategy that encompasses an employer brand, value proposition and benefits.

Consider how you present these to a potential employee – if they cannot relate to it, you may struggle to attract talent. Social media is of utmost importance when it comes to building and marketing your employer branding, having an interactive careers page, with videos, reasons to work for you as well as a corporate Facebook and Twitter page is important.

EI Group's People & Culture Manager, Shane Duffy, has been working alongside Danielle Wood, National Human Resources Advisor for Cash Converters on improving their employer branding strategy. Their website now features a careers page with the top reasons to work for Cash Converters, a rundown on their workplace culture, a recruitment video, the company’s values, employer initiatives, employee testimonials and links to their social media platforms. Danielle believes it has been a proven success, with candidates increasingly approaching them and the ability to find higher quality recruits.

While social media is definitely an effective recruitment channel, it is important to consider the specific industry that you operate in, as well as the level of experience and knowledge you are seeking. Social media is not for all, especially those top end candidates who may not necessarily be using social media networks at all, or at least not for job searches.