#Socialrecruiting: It's not for recruiters

Now this might seem a bit controversial, it’s not intended to be. I write this post on route to Romania, where i’m going to be working with Oracle brand advocates on content creation as well as the recruiting team for EMEA. I have been working with Oracle for a while. They are very open to being social and see the potential that building communities around fan pages will bring.As a result of this project, I’ve been spending a lot of time talking to other corporate recruiters about how (or not), they do social, and I’m seeing a few recurring themes. The most common barriers being available time and targets to hire now!
The complication for all recruiters (and this is not dissimilar to any corporate and most agency recruiters that I have talked to), is time to work outside of anything other than the just-in-time recruiting model. Time pressures mean that recruiting activity is transactional. It’s get a job, find the candidates, fill the job and move on to the next job. Line managers demand hires yesterday, and the relationship needs to be hirer/potential recruit now, rather than potential recruit future. Time and business pressure dictates that it is this way.
Social activity is more about sourcing and broadcasting opportunities in the here and now than in the future. The recruiters job is to get people hired as quickly and effectively as possible, finding potential employees based on skills and experience and converting them in to employees. The job of the recruiter is the locator and the closer. More of a completer finisher than a relationship builder.
Does this mean then that I see social recruiting as wholly transactional?

Far from it. Social plays a massive part in building employer brand, pipelining the talent community and communicating with the world at large about what the company is really like to work for. Employees who develop social networks can provide access to potential employees with any opportunities that come up, acting as the introducer to the recruiter via referral. Employees take and tag pictures and video that says everything about the employer in a credible way, without needing any words or marketing spin. Employee content carries far more credibility than recruiter credibility. After all, a recruiter will always update that this is a great place to work, an employee will only share that if they really believe it.
There in lies the next challenge for corporate, getting people to post and comment freely. It’s not that they don’t want to, but it’s often a case from day one of employment that they have to follow strict rules contained in a brand manual, and get 3 different levels of permission, authority and approval before they can comment about the company or it’s products. Jump forward to this new age of social. Employees are asked to act responsibly towards confidentiality of business and people, courteous and respectful. The basic guidelines are to “Be a grown up.” And then it is up to them to post what and when they like. Any content (blog posts excepted) that take more than 10 minutes to create and tag is considered too manufactured. Content needs to be instant, real and ideally involving people. Once you open this up, and get over the early resistance then you are away.
Once the communities are building with plenty of connections building, people commenting and asking questions, then it’s time for the recruiters to get involved. the role of the recruiter at this point is to identify who could be looking for a job from their on-line behaviour and questions. Recruiters need to get applications and enquiries directly from the Facebook fan page and other social places. This is where the engagement becomes critical and the recruiters can use their skills to match the potential candidates. This might be come in for this job, or it might be stick around and stay in touch, there’s nothing now but I like the look of you. Alternatively it might be talk to this recruiter, they may be the right person for you to talk to. All of this kind of interaction is lost once a C.V. hits an A.T.S. in the traditional way.
All employees should be involved in the social part of recruiting, with the recruiters taking care of the transaction, in the most timely and efficient way.
What part do you think recruiters should play in social recruiting? Where do you think my thinking falls down?


Recruiters On Twitter: What do @GoogleJobs do

Pic Credits: Google.comIt’s an often posed question, “What would Google do?”. The big lessons I’ve learnt from researching the real Google story, discussed  at length at #truAmsterdam are

: Failing is acceptable and often expected. (Think Buzz, Wave, Video and many other Google launches that were launched to a fanfare and closed just as quickly.)

:Google  Fail Quickly

:Google  Fail Cheaply

:Success Comes From Learning From Failiure

:Google win Big!

Given that we can see the failed projects,we also have to look in awe at the scale of the many successes that dwarf the ones that got away. While looking at Google, theres two things that really stand out, and go some way to point out how these huge successes are the culture and the quality of staff they attract and hire.
I’mgoing tobe blogging in more detail about the culture at google as it looks to the outside world. For now i’m going to look at how Google recruit, specificaly within twitter.
It’s easy to assume that if you are a great brand with a great reputation, people will just find you and however unpleasant the experience, the people will still apply. There are those people who believe that big brands like Google don’t have to work too hard on talent attraction and hiring. They also believe the world is still flat! It’s a dated view normally used as a justification for not being social or to deride yet another successful case study that proves social recruiting is working.
To get an idea of how Google engage with potential candidates, I’ve been monitoring the @GoogleJobs twitter account The account is followed by 76,’062 people and follow 325, and have tweeted 4,179 times.

. The bio for the account reads:


Life At Google

Have you heard we’re hiring? Join the conversation on our job opportunities, offices, culture and life at Google.

It’s easy to assume that this will be an automated account pushing out jobs in to the stream.

Here are the last 10 tweets from the stream taken at random:!/sussman/statuses/68328203307065344

There are lots of examples that continue throughout the stream that follow the same vein.

The 5 points that really stand out are:

1: This account is run by a real person or people. Personality branding.

2: Questions and comments are answered instantly.

3: Google are quick to say “sorry, we made a mistake.” and the people in the stream are quick to forgive.

4; Most questions are about the application process and how/where to apply. (Much like Hard Rock Firenze.)

5: This is a total ENGAGEMENT account. The ratio of jobs to content and conversation is 1:33

If you are one of the people (like me), who admire Google as a business, instead of wondering “What would Google do?”, when it comes to twitter, this is “What Google do!” Theres a lesson in that, how much of your job channel on twitter is about engagement?


Using Video in Recruitment

Jonathan Campbell (@recruiterblog) here from Social Talent; Bill kindly asked us to share our free weekly recruiting webinars on this Blog so here is the video of yesterday’s 30 minute presentation on Using Video in Recruitment.    Here’s what it’s all about:

Advertisers and Marketeers have predicted that video is the future of the web and there are already several recruitment specific video products on the market.  We examine video from a recruiters perspective and uncover some great, often free tools for sourcing, screening, branding and engagement.
  • Video CVs: Where are they?
  • Video Interviewing
  • Sourcing on Video Sites
  • Branding with Video
  • Video Apps
The video is password protected as our Weekly Webinars are usually only free if you watch them live but readers of this blog can watch it for free using this password: 3hg4f19bd3

Our next free webinar is on Wednesday 18th May and is entitled “There’s more to X-Ray Search than LinkedIn”.

Here’s what it is all about:

Do you know how to search LinkedIn “through the back door”? It’s called X-Ray search, and it can give you access to nearly 90% of the LinkedIn database for free!

Did you know that you can X-Ray search hundreds of other social media sites?

In this 30 minute Webinar, we will show you how to find candidates on Twitter, YouTube, Vimeo, WordPress, Blogger, Quora, Skype, Pipl, Naymz, Xing and Viadeo (and that’s just for starters).

If you are a recruiter (and we assume you are, if you’re reading this), then you can’t afford to miss this free Webinar.

Register for free here or check out some of our other webinars here.

Hidden places to search for candidates

I’ve been playing around recently with alternative channels for searching for people.In my last post I talked about how to use geek words in your searches to find hidden people. In the search for the best talent,  you need to extend your searches beyond the usual LinkedIn, Google and Monster.No disrespect to these locations but if all other recruiters are searching in the same place, you end up in a footrace to be first.

The following sites have been shown good returns when using “keywords” and locations:


WordPress (main page search.)




Skillpages (formerly Weedle)


Google Images


Just a few ideas. What alternative sites or pages are you using to find possible candidates.


Cracking The Geek Code

I blogged a while ago about meeting one of my social-media idols @documentally on a train journey from Preston to Northampton. I’d been on the mobile and he had overheard me use the term “tweetup.” This triggered a conversation and a meeting with someone I had been following (and learning from for a while.)
I mention this story because we both agreed that “tweetup” was some kind of a geek password that enabled us to connect.
Recently, I’ve been working on drawing up lists of the geek passwords in the sectors they recruit in. These are the words that their target candidates use when they talk to each other about work or projects relevant to the sector. The only way to identify these words is to either ask, be in the conversation or follow what is being said in industry groups, forums or blog posts.
Once you have your list of geek words, those used by your targets and not many others,set up searches and alerts in all of the social channels. This is far more targeted and effective than searching for job titles, and because searches and alerts are in real-time, the people you find are current and most likely relevent. Searching content and postings by “geek words” proves far more effective than searching for bios, directory listings or profiles.
What are your geek words?

Recruitment content marketing

Hi, I’m Martin Couzins and I’ll be posting two guest posts for Bill this week – one today and one on Thursday.

Today I wanted to take a look at some of the great examples of content marketing we are seeing in the recruitment space. Having followed Bill’s endeavours with Hard Rock Cafe and having attended last week’s Social Media in Recuitment conference it would seem that content is the big buzz for recruiters.

SEO services can boost (or destroy) your website traffic. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is a concept that’s familiar to most business people. .What does an seo company doSEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, which is the practice of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website through organic search engine results.

If you are wondering what the term ‘content marketing’ means then here is a definition from Joe Puluzzi on the Junta42 blog (a great content marketing resource).

Content marketing is a marketing technique of creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action such as visiting client’s website landing page, for example.

For recruiters that target audience is mainly jobseekers. And for this audience we are seeing some interesting content marketing to help drive engagement and ultimately fill positions.

As I’m on Bill’s blog it would be impolite not to start with a link to his work with Hard Rock, where Bill worked with Hard Rock to build a Facebook page to recruit for a new opening in Florence, Italy.

Clearly, Hard Rock is a strong brand ie you know what it stands for and you know what you get when you walk through the door. But that does not necessarily mean that you build a FB page and the right people will come. Create the right type of content and they will come, which is exactly what they did.

Last week’s Social Media in Recruitment conference featured quite a few case studies of companies/recruiters doing interesting things with content.

One niche recruitment consultancy – Redfox Executive Recruitment – is having great success distributing content using a variety of social media channels. I spoke to founder Max MacGillivray who told me that he sees his company more as a communications company because he is providing relevant industry content to his audience. How many recruitment consultancies would say that?

Particularly interesting is the fact Redfox has created a bespoke news feed which clients can also sign unto via email. Each week Redfox industry news is emailed to more than 8,000 people globally.

On a much larger scale, The Army and security services provider G4S also presented how they use content to engage with jobseekers. Both use different approaches – G4S pulls people into a secure forums area on its career site, The Army uses Facebook and Twitter to engage with its core demographic (16-24 year olds). For both organisations, content is the key to attracting and engaging the right type of people.

Listen to British Army marketing director Colin Cook talk about why the Army is so focussed on Facebook.
And watch G4S global head of resourcing Colin Minto discuss the G4S approach to social media.

We are seeing a wide range of approaches and channels for creating and distributing content. I hate to say that content is king for recruiters, but it would seem that it is.

All of the examples I have pointed to here adhere to a few basic rules, which anyone in recruiting can follow – and at low cost.

They are:

  1. Identify target demographics
  2. Understand where they are on the web and how they like to be communicated with
  3. Create relevant and useful/interesting content
  4. Distribute in the right place and at the right time
  5. Participate in the conversation – publishing any content is always the start of something
  6. Continually evaluate the impact of your content and tweak your content marketing accordingly

It goes without saying that all your content marketing efforts will be wasted if the experience at the end of the journey is poor. So, make sure the user destination is well designed with the right calls to action and prompts in the right place.

Bill will be talking through the Hard Rock Facebook case study at #Tru Amsterdam.

A Recruiter's Guide to Twitter

Bill is on vacation this week in sunny Wales so he has kindly invited me (Jonathan Campbell, Social Talent, @recruiterblog) to write a guest blog on his behalf.

I run a free weekly recruiting webinar (nearly) every Wednesday at 4pm GMT and Bill helped me with last week’s entitled “Twitter: The Great Untapped Recruitment Tool”.

Here’s what we discussed:

  • Getting the basics right
  • “Push” Job Marketing Strategies and getting your Twitter SEO right
  • “The Long Game”: successful engagement strategies for recruiters
  • Bio & Location Search: Go straight for the jugular & head-hunt
  • When 140 characters is not enough: What can a person’s tweets and followers tell you?
  • Klout: What is it and do you have it?
  • To Follow or not to Follow: when is it time to just listen?
  • It’s all about the Apps: why is only the beginning
  • Hashtags and Lists: What do you need to know

You can check it out for free here:

If you’d like to view any of our previous webinars or sign up for the next one, check them out here.  If you’re planning to come to truDublin next month, give me a shout as I’d love to get some of our tru fans on as guest webinar presenters over the coming weeks as we get ready for the greatest tru yet!

How to build a recruiting desk.

I made this video for Next Level training in Dallas about 14 months ago, for Next Level Training, the training exchange. it has taken a while to get an airing, (due to all the other great content available.)
I think this 5 minute snippet gives you a good idea of some of what I believe in. Building a desk that supports a specialist recruiter requires some basic disciplines.
What do you think?