Companies approach us all the time with one major challenge. How to optimize social media for talent acquisition. They are not talking about those pesky “we are hiring” job posts that you see every day. They are talking about employee brand and brand awareness to make them seem more attractive to potential employees and for the purposes of retaining existing employees. What is now known as “Talent Brand.” There is plenty you can do on social media to build a strong talent brand, but here is one very very important thing ALL companies need to be doing to leverage social media for talent acquisition, and most are NOT doing it!

The most important resources that you have at your disposal for social media are the people who currently work in your company. If you are not leveraging them, not just with introduction bonuses, but through brand awareness and story telling. Then you are missing a very important channel for talent acquisition.
Most companies spend a fortune on 3rd party tools, such as on Linkedin jobs or life pages trying to optimize the visibility of their hiring needs. Not only that, the most active members of staff, on social media, are normally only the HR people. But an HR person, even with the best intentions, can only reach so far into the digital world. Companies forget that the people who work for them are the best brand ambassadors that they have. When a devops team lead shares that the company is looking for new people, he or she is more likely to have a network of relevant connections, than the HR personnel. Especially, if they share more than just a “we are hiring” post and actually leverage social to tell a story about the technological advances of the company or great reasons why it is a good company to work for. Employee pride says a lot more about a company than all the thousands of $$$ spent on paying linkedin to host a JOB or LIFE sections on Linkedin.

We recently helped 2 companies with different talent acquisition “pains” look at how they could optimize social media to tell a better brand story, using their employees. We not only brainstormed the messages that we thought would help them “sell” those open positions better. We looked at who to leverage in the company and how those advocates could help drive better quality and more visibility for their brand and specifically for open positions.

One company with over 20,000 employees, just by recruiting several hundred advocates has managed to drive 20 times more applicants to their jobsite than before. Another company with 6,000+ employees, of which only 1,500 are active advocates, has managed to double all social engagements YoY.
It speaks volumes that the posts that are winning our 20K employee client more engagements and click-throughs than any other posts, are the ones that highlight employee success, showcase reasons why the company is a great place to work, and even show the fun side of the company.

So how can businesses face this challenge? Here are three things we recommend that you can do right now to implement a successful talent brand on social media.
1. Strong Social Media presenceWhy does a strong social media make a difference to potential new employees? It is likely future employees will do online research on your company to view if the company offers work-perks, learning opportunities, benefits, and showcases positive employee-employer relationship.
Being transparent and active on social media shows that the company is advanced and not scared to move towards the future. Showcasing real people and real stories is a great way to leverage your successes and entice new employees. At the same time, involving your existing employees instills a sense of pride in the workplace and the contribution they make, making them more likely to stay the distance.

What to implement: Increase day to day social media posting and story-telling, not only job postings.
2. Showcase Company Perks/BenefitsPotential employees want to see that the company offers above and beyond what other companies in the same field offer. This includes things like training, advancement opportunities and free perks like travel and meals. Some of the things our clients have implemented include once a week sushi lunch for all employees. Career learning and advancement opportunities etc…
3. Positive Employee Advocacy – tell stories through the eyes of your employeesHaving your employees share company posts/news will show that your company is involved with their employees. Shows potential employees that the current employees enjoy working at your company and that they can enjoy it too. The more employees share/like/comment the companies posts on social media, the bigger/wider the reach will be. Use your employees to be the “stars” in your social posts. Highlight their successes and impact on your clients.

What to Implement: Have your employees share on their own social media accounts a positive experience they had with your company. This will show other companies/potential employers a real feel of your company. The employee with the most likes/shares/comments receives a reward.
Summary:The people who work for you are your best path to people you want to have work for you. Telling your brand story on social media and having these people share it opens you up to a much wider audience and will ultimately help you to identify and employ the right people much faster.
Do not be afraid to use social media for this avenue, trust us, you would be surprised if I could show you the actual results of who is looking at your page on social media, what demographics they are in and how they are engaging with your posts. Many of them are potential hiring candidates and NOT the analysts, journalists and business partners you WISH were engaging with your social brand. Although they are there too. But I will leave you with this one thought. If you are pushing a positive employee brand on social, for the purposes of talent acquisition, using the best practices we have mentioned above… and… an analyst or potential customer sees these posts. They won’t shy away from your product and not take you seriously, AFAIK, they will probably be more impressed at your pride and transparency and curious to work too with a company that takes such pride in its’ people and work. Now that’s brand positivity!

ZoecialMedia is a social media creative agency. We will help you face any challenge on social media and create a strategy and creative plan to leverage your digital channels for more brand visibility and credibility. Speak to us about a no-obligation audit of your social channels. www.zoecialmedia.com

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