Posts Tagged ‘Facebook’

Introducing Social Media into Your Recruitment Process

Tuesday, June 26th, 2012

The post below was contributed by Greg Moran, the CEO of Chequed.com, a Predictive Talent Selection suite used by organizations like Subway and Disney to hire better. You can keep up to date with Greg on twitter @CEOofChequed.

As the liability of a bad hire increases, recruiters around the world are embarking on the search for new, more effective means for finding the right candidates.  Yet, there’s no reason to take to the hills or sail the seven seas if the plethora of social media remains untapped by your HR department. Sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn aren’t just about status updates and games like Farmville anymore. They also serve as great facilitators for the candidate selection process.

However, the question isn’t only whether or not you’re using social media, but whether you’re using it effectively. You won’t be surprised to learn that by only occasionally posting available positions or haphazardly firing out job alerts on Twitter won’t win the heart of many candidates. Rather, it’s important to use social media in a way that not only scans for potential candidates, but that truly connects your HR department with quality candidates.

But before we go any further, we must first note that while social media and web research can be invaluably beneficial, it is critical that prospective employers use such tools ethically. Recruiters are responsible for investigating candidate and reference checks in a manner that is objective and in accordance with legal standards (for more information checkout the legal issues of reference checking). Information pertaining to a candidate’s health, sexual orientation or religion should be avoided at best, ignored at the least. As long as such sentiments are clear, recruiters are encouraged to jump into the world of social media with enthusiasm and high expectations!

Earlier this year, Bullhorn and CareerXroads both released reports indicating that LinkedIn was the most relied upon social media tool of all recruiters. But there’s no reason to put all of your eggs in one basket!  Get creative; branch out.  For instance, the same Bullhorn report found that a Twitter follower is nearly three times more likely to apply to a job posting than a LinkedIn connection. Pinterest, the site of virtual personalized pin boards, and Foursquare, the individualized GPS system, are both great tools for researching a candidate’s background.  Likewise, they can provide a fair amount of information regarding the candidate’s intentions and ambitions.

Similarly, wise recruiters understand that leading candidates can often be linked back to the references they provide and that these references may one day become job candidates themselves.  Be sure to call upon the social media described above to learn more about the names listed as references on a candidate’s application. Doing so may not only validate the quality of the reference, but may also allow for a quality opportunity to network with the reference.

It’s important to understand that much of social media is user generated, indicating that your candidate may have carefully censored the information he or she made available. So to supplement the smorgasbord of sometimes-bias social media, don’t forget to include basic Google searches in your candidate selection process.  Google has a tendency to turn up information that is not user generated, but that will be equally vital in your selection process, such as previous convictions.

While recruiting is an age-old field, the methods involved therein don’t need to be antiquated.  Social media, when used effectively and ethically, allows human resource representatives to increase productivity, reduce total expenditure, and subsequently improve hiring outcomes. It’s an equation that makes sense.

 

Are You Using Social Media for Employee Communications Yet?

Tuesday, May 17th, 2011

The post below is a guest blog from Stephanie Clark who serves as the Marketing Coordinator and Social Media Manager for CAI’s employee benefits partner Hill, Chesson & Woody Employee Benefit Services.

Have you seen the social media traffic stats on the night of Sunday, May 1, 2011? While President Barack Obama announced to the world that a U.S. military team killed Osama Bin Laden, Twitter topped 5,000 tweets per second.  Care to guess how many of your employees updated their Facebook status that night? The news spread like wildfire on various social media channels, per CNN’s report, as details unfolded through reputable and highly-followed twitter users.

More and more businesses are jumping into social media to educate consumers and create brand awareness. At the same time, this way of communicating has also changed how organizations approach their own workforce, by offering another method of sending out information. A 2010 Watson Wyatt survey showed the most popular topics to engage employees through social media are collaboration and team building, adapting to change, and promoting health and wellness. On the other hand, for messages around business changes, employees widely prefer face-to-face communication. Social media provides another avenue to engage employees in a way they like to receive information.

Paper memos are a thing of the past. Long-winded emails may be going in that direction as well. Here’s a thought: Try pasting the next employee memo you compose into Microsoft Word and conduct a Flesch-Kincaid readability test. If your memo scores higher than a seventh or eighth grade level, some employees may not understand it. It’s hard for employees to genuinely care about what goes on in your company when information is presented at a level they don’t understand. Keep it simple if you want to reach everyone in your company with the message.

For years now, IBM has engaged with employees through social media, even before they used social media externally for marketing. Companies such as Virgin Media have gone the route of video blogging on a YouTube channel exclusively for employees. Viewers see and hear someone as if they are speaking only to them, and yet a wide audience is being reached.  Also, this offers workers the opportunity for commenting in a public forum.

Who doesn’t like to hold the remote? Like most individuals, your employees probably prefer to control their own communication experience. By asking questions, offering suggestions and learning other employees’ perspectives, they create news that is relevant to them on a level that makes sense. What is a better way to become a true stakeholder? Forums, blogs and social networks are a great way to encourage employees to connect and interact.

If you’re not using social media in your organization yet, internally or externally, it’s never too late to start. Many resources are out there to help you get started. A few helpful links are listed below.

How to create a LinkedIn company page
http://learn.linkedin.com/company-pages/

How to create a Facebook page for your business
http://www.facebook.com/pages/create.php

How to create a YouTube channel
http://www.ehow.com/how_4493894_create-youtube-channel.html

How to create a Twitter account
http://support.twitter.com/entries/100990-how-to-sign-up-on-twitter

How to optimize your Facebook privacy for business
http://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/12067/How-to-Optimize-Your-Facebook-Privacy-for-Business.aspx

Six non-fluff answers to your social media questions
http://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/10268/6-Non-Fluff-Answers-to-Your-Social-Media-Questions.aspx

Using Social Media for Employee Communications

Friday, May 28th, 2010

It’s an all too familiar refrain from HR professionals – employees missing response deadlines, asking why and when their benefits were changed, and getting upset about “new” policies.  But you know that you’ve sent out a number of communications and done everything short of putting the employees in a closet and forcing them to fill out the required form or read the information.

I can’t promise you it will result in 100 percent participation, but one new trick you may want to try is social media.

“Social media?”  you say.  “Isn’t that just for people sharing their photos and the endless details of their monotonous lives?”

Well, yes, and no, but that really is the point.  The key to communicating to an audience is to talk to them where they are, and it is highly likely that many of your employees are using social media.  So how can you take advantage of the huge growth in social media usage to improve the responsiveness of your employees to important HR requests?

The first suggestion is to ask employees if they use social media and if so, what websites they most often utilize.

If most of your employees are not social media users, or if the ratio is around 50/50 but you really want to try something new, your best bet is to set up an employee communications blog.  This will give you the ability to communicate the messages you’d like to send and to encourage the interaction of employees through commenting.

The process of setting up a blog can move quickly and easily, especially if you use one of the more common free platforms like WordPress or Blogger.  You’ll want to privatize your blog if you only want those within your company to have access.  Or you may want to show the world what a great company you have, which is the approach that Zappos.com takes.

Of course, the most popular social media platform right now is Facebook.  Knowing that Facebook has such a large number of active participants may push you in the direction of setting up a corporate page for your employees.  Setting up the page can be done quite quickly.

Keep two things in mind– your employees may not feel comfortable linking their private profiles to a corporate page, and you will have to adjust the privacy settings of your Facebook page if you only want employees to view it.

Another social media platform that may be more appropriate for your HR goals is LinkedIn.  LinkedIn is most often thought of as the more professional social network.  Through LinkedIn, you can set up a group that requires approval to join and invite employees.  You can set your group up to automatically send e-mails when you’ve posted information, either discussions or news.

Twitter is another alternative you may want to consider.  Setting up accounts on Twitter is easy, and you can protect your tweets.  For your employees to receive the information you send, they will have to follow you.  The challenge for communications using Twitter may be the 140-character limit per tweet.  You could consider using it as a way to get the word out about a new post to your blog or Facebook page.

You may want to start by dipping your toe in one of these alternatives as a way to support the methods you already use, or you may be ready to completely transition.  Either way it will be important that you fully research and understand the new platform you choose to use, whether it be a blog, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter or one of the many other alternatives.

Are you considering using social media for employee communications?  What advantages and/or disadvantages do you see?  If you’ve already implemented a social media platform, please let us know your thoughts on how it is working.

Photo Source: benstein

Leveraging Social Media for New Hires

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

We have all heard stories about teachers getting fired for inappropriate Facebook pictures and employees expressing dissatisfaction through tweets.  Leaving aside these situations, social media actually can help us in the hiring process.

Most of us vet new hires through references, background checks and credit checks. But with social media tools such as Facebook, Twitter and Flickr, potential employees are breaking down the walls between professional persona and personal life for us.

So how much of the information on these sites should you rely on when hiring? Here are a few guiding points.

  • Be Open Minded – While potential employees are responsible for what they post online and who can see it, remember that these sites are generally used for recreational and personal uses. However, if their LinkedIn profile picture has a beer in it, go ahead and cross them off your list, unless you’re hiring for a brewery. As a business connections site, LinkedIn should be regarded as a professional social media tool and be used accordingly.
  • Consider Its Relevance to the Position – Take note of the position the candidate is applying for and base any judgments from there. A teaching candidate should not have photos from a spring break wet T-shirt contest, for example. But a candidate who collects matchbooks or reveals similarly innocuous behaviors online should not raise a red flag.
  • When in Doubt, Ask – If you are unsure about something you have come across in your employee search and the candidate seems worthwhile for consideration, then just ask him or her about it. Good employees are hard to find, so taking a moment to go an extra step could be very beneficial in the long run.

How does your company leverage social media for new hires? We would love to hear your opinions.

Photo Credit: liako