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Social networking: how to mine the richest passive candidate pools in North America


Social networking: how to mine the richest passive candidate pools in North AmericaYou’ve heard the names: MySpace. Facebook. LinkedIn. In fact, if you’re one of the 13 million Canadians between the ages of fifteen and forty-four, there’s a sixty percent chance you already have a personal profile on at least one of those leading social networking sites.

The kicker of course is that so do the most desirable passive candidates you’re looking to recruit. That’s why social networks have become the most powerful employment brand builder and candidate recruitment tool the HR industry has ever seen.

So how do you start to mine these rich databases of talent? Always remember that social networking is a true one-to-one endeavor. This takes a little more time and a lot more precision than the days of blasting shotgun job postings from first generation web solutions like Monster but the rewards are there waiting to be reaped, often for a fraction of the cost.

Here then are a few ways you can start to leverage the power of social networks in your recruiting efforts:

Build your ideal candidate pool for free

Every social network has advanced search capabilities that let you zero in on specific profiles of potential passive candidates. So even if all you did was search by region, job title and employer name, you’d receive in seconds what would have otherwise taken forever in painstaking research.

Send targeted, personalized messages

Potential passive candidates are much more open to receiving personal messages through social networks than regular email because of the trust that already exists within their groups of friends and colleagues. In our targeted recruiting efforts, we routinely get response rates of 50% or more, significantly dwarfing the low single-digit response rates considered to be hugely successful in traditional direct email campaigns.

Establish a corporate presence in the network

Most sites allow you to set up profile pages for your company, too. They’re free so use them to support your outreach efforts on the network and as a supplement to your existing career site. Encourage your employees to become friends and increase the chance of connecting your message with their networks as well.

Start a Facebook referral program

This is one of the fastest, easiest things you can do to start getting results right away with minimal effort. Let’s say your company has 250 employees. Our research tells us that 50 of them will have Facebook profiles with roughly 200 friends each. So if each of those employees posted a note about an open career opportunity on their profile, that message would get exposed to 10,000 people instantly. For free.

Launch a social advertising campaign

Social networks now give you the ability to place highly targeted career advertising which can be used in a number of creative as well as potentially aggressive ways. One company I know identified employees of a high profile competitor as being particularly desirable so they crafted specific career ads that only appeared on profile pages of individuals who listed that high profile competitor as an employer.

Source: HR Voice

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