Carrie Corbin

I’ve been traveling quite a lot recently, clocking up a few airmiles  and meeting some fantastic people. There is no doubt that social recruiting is high on the agenda of most hiring companies. It’snot always the ultimate solution to everything, but it sits in the mix.
Last week Oracle Corporation announced that they are going to be hiring 1,700 new staff in the EMEA region, and are focussing recruiting activity on Facebook, Twitter and other social channels. I’ve been working closely with the team on putting the infrastructure together for this, and when one of the biggest brands in the world start investing in social, then you know that things are going main stream.
The big barrier that everyone talks about is time.Recruiting teams by and large do not have the time to invest in building talent communities. It takes a big budget and belief to invest in attracting people and engaging with them, whom you may never hire. Succesful social recruiting takes time to get a return, (outside of the post and pray approach.). The challenge is taking recruiting, which is largely focussed in the now, and adopting techniques that will take time to bring tangible results. My belief is that it takes at least 6 months before you begin to be in a position to harvest a return, and build up anything like a network that will pay off. Most recruiters have targets to hire now, and as a result, hiring becomes transactional in the now, starting with posting, dealing with response and perhaps a bit of LinkedIn sourcing and offering jobs. Success comes from numbers, find a number of possible candidates, mail them and hope that it sticks. Fill a job, get another job and rinse and repeat.The same is even more true when you look at third-party agency recruiters.
When I was in SanAntonio at #TNL I got to spend some time with Carrie Corbin (@TheAlphaFemme) of A.T.& T;s Associate Director of staffing and Talent Attraction. I have long been a fan of Carries work. What I picked up from our conversation was the view that A.T & T do not focus on talent communities, more talent networks. That is knowing how to reach people with relevent messages when they need to communicate. this could be job opportunities, employer branding content or just to get back on the radar. This is largely done by e-mail, where the key is relevance of message to avoid spam. This doesn’t feature engagement. It is all one way messaging with a call to action, and doesn’t rely on on-going dialogue or communication.
The job board research conducted by Jobsite, repeatedly finds accurate jobs by e-mail, that match capability, as one of the highest ranking “wants” from jobseekers. they want timely notifications of jobs that match their capabilities, to save them constantly needing to check in and follow jobs as they come up. Passive job seekers still want to be kept in the loop as to jobs that come up just in case the opportunity is tempting enough to apply.
We can apply the same thinking to talent networks. By capturing contact details and profiles of those people who come in to contact with your employer brand at any point so that you can update them with opportunities when they come up, without the need of maintaining an on-going relationship, (as with the community approach.)
Jump forward a few weeks to #ATCSource in Melbourne, and I had the opportunity to take a close look at a product that serves this function well, provide a plug-in that sits on multiple channels from career pages to fan pages. Anyone viewing the page is invited to connect with the network, and can do so using their LinkedIn or Facebook profiles. It is a 2 click opt-in operation that is quick and very simple.
On the back-end of Find.Ly, a profile is built based on the on-line profiles of the people who elect in. calls this a “talent hive.” where recruiters can access the social profiles of potential candidates.There are 3 real benefits to as I see it:
1: Profiles are based in real-time on the current social profile. If a contact updates their LinkedIn profile, their record updates, and recruiters can elect to receive alerts to these updates. Combining this with tracking of predictive internet behaviours, you can identify potential candidates when they move from passive to active, and be most likely to be responsive.
2: The hive is fully searchable and supports Boolean logic. This means a recruiter can segment people on any criteria to identify who to message from the talent network. Recruiters can interrogate the hive and send relevent messages.
3: Sign up is simple, opt in or invite, and sits across all career places, social or otherwise.

Users of include A.T.& T and Nike, so they have a blue chip client base. The talent network approach fits larger organisations who need to manage scale and continuous hiring.

This approach to building a talent network, rather than a community has lots of potential. A network requires less maintenance and is reactive to need, meaning activity can focus on “hire now”, while ensuring no contact is lost and all detail on profiles are current.
On another note, I see the talent network fitting closer with the third-party/agency recruiters,over the more time intensive, longer term talent community approach. This is perhaps the approach to social that agency recruiters should be exploring as a means to capturing the contact detail of all those people coming in to contact with their agency.
A talent network approach will only be enhanced by developing talent communities and places to feature employment branding content to attract people in to the network. Increasingly, organisations are separating employer branding from recruiting or marketing. Organisations like Accenture operate recruitment marketing as a function focussed on talent attraction, others like Oracle have empowered employees to play an active part in brand advocacy. Recruiters can maximise on this type of activity by creating a framework for capturing contact detail of anyone responding, looking or getting involves, tracking these contacts to keep information current, and messaging contacts with relevant calls to action, whilst not needing to continuously communicate.
I’m going to be looking at the case for talent networks at #truRomania this week, and #truLondon next week. I’m interested in your views of this approach over talent communities. What works for you?



Carrie Corbin