The Recruited Talent Social Media Strategy

Lately there have been spirited conversations in the recruitment world pertaining to the viability of social media as the replacement solution for job boards and traditional recruitment models. Basically the internet has a very wide reach and has become socially interactive, but most recruiters disagree as to which strategy is best for recruiting top talent. To add to that debate, many from the old school of recruiting have argued that relationship building remains the key in connecting employers to the right job seekers. However, there is one approach most will agree is best because it is a recruitment strategy built with social media tools and old school recruiting methodologies. It is called The Recruited Talent Social Media Strategy and I am going to show you how it will enhance your current recruitment efforts.

While delivering my old school telephone recruitment pitch to a potential candidate, something magical happened. Before I had a chance to complete my presentation and ask my favorite thought provoking “are you the type that keep your eyes and ears open to potentially good opportunities” engagement question, the candidate blurted: is this for XYZ Company?

Me: Have you received many recruitment calls about opportunities with XYZ Company?

Candidate: Not really, but they must be doing something right! I heard that they recently hired very talented folks from some of the major players in the Industry. I would be interested in talking to them to see what they are doing.

.How often has a cold call ever flowed this smoothly and generated a qualified candidate for an open position?

It doesn’t happen very often, but this type of positive reception on a cold call happens more often when there is a real positive buzz in the marketplace about a specific employer brand. But the key word in this case is real as in face-to-face or telephone conversations; not the virtual type that are associated with social networking sites.

I am not implying that social recruiting is not an effective tool in generating candidate excitement about career opportunities with a specific employer. What I am suggesting is that in order to benefit from the viral interaction of social engagement, there has to be a genuine buzz taking place that can be seen, heard and felt by the talent pool. Something impactful needs to happen first!

A good Example of a genuine buzz is the long lines for iphones, or LeBron James decision to leave Cleveland for Miami, or even the Tea Party movement if you are into politics. The bottom line is something real has to take place before social media tools can capitalize on that buzz.

You may already know, but if you have implemented a social media recruitment campaign simply because all your competitors in the industry were doing it, or you believe the traditional recruitment methodologies are too expensive especially in the economy, or the experts have all recommended SM as the silver bullet solution to recruiting top talent, you will be disappointed with the result of your social media recruitment campaign.

Just because your organization has a presence on LinkedIn, Twitter, Face book, YouTube or any of the other social networking sites, it doesn’t automatically translate into a workable social media strategy that will produce real results. Nothing will happen if there is no a demand!

While we may have the same social media objective from a recruitment perspective, the real challenge is in formulating an effective strategy to meet those objectives. To formulate the right strategy starts with building that strategy around an event, a product or a major accomplishment regarding your employer brand.

This is where the “rubber meets the road.” From a recruitment perspective, an effective strategy begins with physically recruiting top talent to your organization. When the new hires are onboard, implement a viral social media recruitment campaign around the success of your recruitment results.

Here are a few events behind that particular buzz: We assisted a new client (a mid size regional employer with an unknown employer brand) successfully recruited three young superstars from two National firms. During that search, hundreds of telephone recruitment calls were made which resulted in many conversations regarding that specific employer.

What we found is that when conversations about the successful recruitment results become public, the need for traditional recruitment methods will diminish; and that’s the perfect time to take that momentum virally unto the Internet. Only then you will see the power of the social media tools in action. In real time, those tools will be the bridge that connects the talent pool to the employer.

How do you recruit top talent to begin your SM campaign?

You do it the old school way. Utilize third party headhunters to aggressively recruit talent from your competitors. Headhunters are experts in developing relationships, selling the role, the hiring manager as well as coaching the candidates throughout the hiring process. They are the Navy Seals of getting your brand out there and keeping it out there with the talent pool. From telephone recruitment calls, they will tell the story of your employer brand to hundreds of qualified candidates. This approach is also a form of free advertisement for the employer. It’s considered free because employers will only hire the best talent and since headhunters are compensated on a performance only basis; there is no upfront financial investment or commitment on the part of the employer. Sure, the placement fee ultimately becomes the financial investment, but having a top recruited talent representing your employer brand will prove a significant ROI in terms of increased revenue and reduced operating expenses.

It takes top talent to recruit top talent and recruited talent attracts more talent to an employer brand. A social recruitment strategy by itself is unsustainable without an existing demand for that employer brand. A strategy built on the recruited talent social media model will create a demand for that employer brand and ultimately reduce the future recruitment cost-per-hire.