By Nilam Oswal

Ever wondered what use your Facebook or Twitter account can be of other than providing an endless supply of distraction and memes?

Heads up, it could actually help you land a job.

Social recruiting or social media recruiting is no longer just a trend. According to a 2017 CareerBuilder survey, up to 70% of employers use social media to screen candidates. It has so many benefits and such a great ROI that more and more employers are opening up to the possibility of making it a core recruitment tool. For recruiters and hiring managers, social media recruiting is the most valuable resource to use in conjunction with traditional recruitment software.

Here are 10 reasons why social recruitment beats traditional recruitment, hands down.

1. Greater Reach

Today, Facebook and YouTube have a combined user base of 3.5+ billion people. That’s more than the population of the two most populous countries of the world. So it’s obvious that the scope of social media in reaching candidates is much wider than traditional recruitment tools. Recruiters have access to potential candidates from the global pool. Social media would allow an employer to reach the perfect candidate who might not even have applied to any traditional recruitment fora.

2. Direct Interaction with Candidates

Social media makes it easy for employers to interact with future hires in an informal setting before they even officially apply for the job. The employee makes his first impression on a potential employee through his social media profile alone.

Candidates can directly contact the recruitment team of a company to resolve any queries they might have regarding the job. The informal setting is mutually beneficial to both the company and the candidates for forming their respective first impressions of each other.

3. Ability to Reach Passive Candidates

The perfect candidate is out there, but he is not actively looking for a job. Such candidates are called passive candidates. It could be someone who is simply figuring out what to do next or is looking for a career change, and happens to fit the required job profile perfectly.

Social media provides an excellent opportunity for employers to find such candidates and convince them to apply. Recruiters can use Twitter’s advanced search or Facebook’s graph search to find users who fit the specific criteria for a job.

4. Go Beyond What’s on Paper

As mentioned before, the candidate makes their first impression on an employer through their social media profile. However, it also allows an employer to evaluate candidates based on parameters that lie beyond what’s on their curriculum vitae. On the basis of the candidates’ behavior on social media, a recruiter can ascertain how they would fit into the culture of the organization. The candidates’ attitude attributes and social/general/commercial awareness are also on full display on their social media profile

5. Cost Effective

Traditionally, recruiting has been an expensive affair for most companies. From investment in a recruitment software and applicant tracking system (ATS) to salaries for the recruiters, significant costs are incurred in the recruitment process. While social recruiting cannot eliminate all of these costs entirely, it can certainly alleviate the burden.

With regard to traditional media such as advertisements in print, social media recruiting costs nothing. Moreover, with targeted social media, the reach and conversion rate are also boosted. Thus social media recruiting yields a great return on investment.

6. Viral Job Openings

Open job postings distributed through Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter reach extensive networks of potential candidates who would otherwise not be reached. Social referrals of such openings are also greater than of traditional job postings.When job openings go viral, it acts as an incredible boost to the company’s overall perception on social media and its networking potential.

7. Time-Saving

Hiring using traditional methods can take months at a time for a single hire. With social recruiting, each aspect of the recruitment process is accelerated. Recruiters no longer have to go through endless rounds of sorting, screening, phone interview, and reference checks. The use of social media will fast-track the time-consuming parts of the process, sometimes even eliminating certain steps that are not needed.

8. Future Networking

The right engagement and referrals on social media can help recruiters and employers to build a robust network for future hiring as well. For example, a recruiter connects with a candidate who has excellent qualifications and experience, but there’s no vacancy for his particular profile at present. As soon as a suitable one opens up at the company, the recruiter can simply fast-track this candidate’s application.

9. A Two-Way Street

Successful recruitment through social media depends, in part, on the brand cultivated by the employer on social media. Candidates would not want to apply for the job if they’re not impressed with the company’s overall image on social media platforms.

So it’s not just candidates who have to be their best selves on social media, companies also have to ensure that the image that they are projecting on social media is attractive and engaging for potential employees.

10. Candidate Experience

Why is candidate experience so important? According to a CareerBuilder survey, 78% candidates believe that the overall experience they receive during the recruitment process is an indicator of how a company treats its employees. Social media recruitment can help recruiters to gauge the experience of candidates, as most of them are quite vocal about it on social media. Positive candidate experience will multiply referrals. Moreover, people who are satisfied with their experience are 38% more likely to accept the job offer.

Last Words

Data is ubiquitous, but useful data is rare. On social media websites, an overwhelming amount of data regarding potential candidates is available. Social media recruiting provides a brilliant opportunity to recruiters and companies to harness this data on candidates in the most efficient way possible. It is purely in the hands of the recruiters how well they are able to locate and target the diamonds in the rough that lie hidden underneath thousands of social media profiles.

Photo credit: Social recruiting concept from Aniwhite/Shutterstock