Thursday, January 27, 2011

Series 1: Post 3: Do’s & Don’ts of Twitter for Millennial Recruiting

Do you think Twitter is relevant as part of your recruiting toolkit? This post is all about why I think it is THE next big thing for recruiters & also a great tool those up and coming millennials are using to check out a perspective company’s culture. Sharing your culture is key as millennials list culture/future colleagues within the top reasons in choosing a company along with meaningful work, work-life balance & advancement opportunities. Here’s why I think it is really going to become the next big thing:

Millennials/university attendees are a growing population on Twitter so now is your time to get a program built and get ahead of your competition. I love this quote from one of Twitter’s founders: “We think of Twitter as it’s not a social network, but it's an information network. It tells people what they care about as it is happening in the world.” – Evan Williams. Twitter is the best tool within recruiting for sharing information, learning about your industry & sharing your company culture with perspective employees.  It’s even better than Facebook for culture sharing as most people don’t protect their tweets so 99% of twitter is an open network = open sharing. It is easy to welcome people and people are not protective of their tweets (unlike protective profiles in Facebook) so there are not the same potential privacy pitfalls.

Here are some Twitter DO’s:
-      Have an internal Twitter lead
-      Set up a corporate ID – reserve it NOW even if you aren’t sure if this is the medium for you (@companyname or @companyjobs are great handles.
-       Use #hastags to organize information about your company & make it searchable (example #companyname). Hashtags are also used to pull information off of twitter onto your website if you have a twitter feed.
-       Maintain a ratio of 1:10 of broadcast PR messages to participation to ensure you are answering the “what’s in it for me?” question for your followers
-      Choose follows wisely – choose people relevant to your industry. Don’t just follow anyone.
-       Share relevant information
-       Respond to people who mention your handle. Create dialogues.
-       Have someone create a list of employees & maintain with new employees. This creates a list people can follow to see what people at your company are saying.
-       Tweet information that is timely & relevant for your candidates – recruiting events, tips for applications, tips for interviews.
-       Engage people so ensure that whenever someone @mentions you (meaning they quote your twitter handle/name) – you respond to have a conversation
-       Have contests or ask questions to get your followers engaged
-       Tweet photos of recruiting events or new employees or your office to share your culture

-       Don’t think you HAVE to be on twitter. Ensure it makes sense for your industry & your target market
-       Auto-follow people back – this shows you are only trying to have a high number of followers versus connecting with relevant people
-       Spam with direct message auto responses when people follow you
-       Don’t use it as a PR tool; have conversations & engage!
-       Don’t just jump in without seeing what your competitors are doing
-       Don’t forget about doing your research – use great website’s like mashable to get tips/tricks for getting started from the very basics

Did this help? Which of the DO’s are you current doing & which are intriguing to you to try!?

Not sure how to even get started? Check out this great tool kit on getting started and maximizing your use of twitter at:

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Series 1: Post 2: Do’s & Don’ts of Facebook for Millennial Recruiting

Here are some statistics to blow your mind: Facebook has over 500 million users, 50% of users log on EACH day, and the average user has 130 friends. According to Facebook, “people spend over 800 billion minutes per month on Facebook.” There are over 900 million objects people on Facebook people interact with (pages, groups, etc) and there are more than 200 million active users connecting to Facebook via a mobile smart phone or device. Have I scared you yet?

If your target market is millennials – you NEED to be on Facebook. So many companies are afraid of this social platform as you can’t control the full message as Facebook encourages a dialogue. Companies that engage a PUSH strategy (aka only pushing PR messaging out to group members) will not be successful on this medium. You need to be comfortable with using Facebook and having some of those difficult conversations in that people may not always love your brand or your opportunities. Negative messages (like why didn’t I get the job? Or why didn’t I hear back after my interview) are OK – don’t delete them! It’s about how you respond to them. Most people are so happy to have a response that the anger totally dissipates and you actually have a real conversation & might even sway someone over or intrigue someone else with your honesty!

Some key things to DO on Facebook:
-      Have a centralized company fan page:   You can actually have different material coded into your page based on geo-analytics so based on where the candidate logs in from they will see geographically relevant information = now that is relevant
-     Link to your ATS – ensure a candidate can apply within 3 clicks as you typically lose 60% of applicants with EACH additional click over 3!
-      Use it not just for recruitment but also for employee engagement: Have different employees participate talking about their jobs so people see the REAL story of working at your company!
-      Use all of the features like showcasing videos (do you have a recruiting video, YouTube videos employees have made about working at your company?) or photos (holiday parties, company events, work places… anything that shows what working at your company is like)
-      Create recruiting events, company events & update your status with information about open positions
-      Have a moderator but don’t be overly happy with the DELETE button. This is something that Sr. Managers may be uncomfortable with. You need the “real” story to be seen as this is what millennials are demanding
-      Ensure you have user generated information – can employees participate in discussions or contests?
-      Share company events that new hires/employees can attend be mindful that the page is very open: new hires, alumni, new candidates, clients etc
-      Put a status update on the Facebook page about new employees and welcome them
-      Host Training Sessions for Recruiters on using Facebook – Dos and Don’ts
-      Build WOM on campus through campus reps, interns or campus recruiters about your Facebook group to link Facebook back to your on-campus and employment branding efforts

My Do/Don’t post wouldn’t be complete without…A few DON’Ts on Facebook:
-      Send mass/spam messages
-      Delete all negative comments. Respond
-      Speak only corporate talk
-      Limit yourself to only 1 page. Does a regional approach make sense for key alumni groups!?
-      Don’t make it a requirement for employees or new hires to participate on your Facebook page as some people like separation between their social and work circles.   Encourage your recruiters to potentially have 2 Facebook pages so they have one to use for recruiting/campus connections

Hopefully these quick & easy tips help you get started on Facebook or help you better use the platform. How are you best using Facebook? What are you afraid of? How can I help?

Facebook statistics found here:

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Series 1: Post 1: Social Media - Advertising or Marketing?

Social Media is a great vehicle to communicate a company’s culture as it allows you to share information and build relationships.  Before I start this series I have to first state that social media should not be your ONLY recruiting tactic for millennials. If your company does not have strong on-campus recruiting efforts and a great employment brand you should not be focusing on social media as you have bigger priorities at hand.   If you already have those priorities under control, it is time to get into social media as likely your competitors are already there! There are a couple of techniques for using social media: the first is paid advertising, typically purchasing ads focused on your target market through profile analytics, and the second is marketing, building your online presence and sharing your company culture with perspective candidates.
Advertising can be very experience as you typically pay a cost per click with Facebook or job platforms on a yearly contract basis. For some companies, the use of advertising, like job boards, is the right solution. For the work I do, young adult recruiting, social media marketing is where I need to be these are platforms where students spend time thus, as a recruiter; I need to be on there too! There are so many ways you can use the inherent nature of social media sites to your advantage as they are built to share information and connect with friends or in your case, candidates.
I believe that building your brand through online free social media platforms allows you to target future candidates in a more cost effective manner than just advertising if it supports a strong employment brand and campus recruiting techniques.  Social media (online techniques) should boost your offline/campus activities. The key to using social media sites like Facebook is to first have a strategy on how to use these platforms organically, bring in the right alumni and current employees to build employee engagement and share your culture, which in turn creates a great recruiting tool as candidates see the real story about working at your company. Social media is not about pushing information but is about creating a dialogue – a push/pull – and answering the question “what’s in it for me?” for perspective candidates. Hopefully I can help you understand how to use these sites and build the draw factor that starts off a discussion that hopefully ends in an accepted job offer.
Over the next month, I will be sharing insights on how to use Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Foursquare by sharing your culture, creating engaged current employees and excited candidates.  If you have any specific questions about using these sites please post a comment on this blog post so I can tailor my upcoming blogs to meet your needs!

Monday, January 3, 2011

A New Year and Some New Goals

Hi All,

It has been about a month since I have dedicated some serious time to my blog as I was on a whirlwind travel schedule speaking at the Campus Recruiting Forum in Waterloo, Calgary and in San Francisco. December is always a busy month wrapping up the work year, the holidays and planning 2011. As I did some professional planning, I also sat down to make some personal social media goals. I'm not a big person for resolutions as it seems that so many people have these huge overwhelming goals that are most likely to be broken within a month of the New Year. Instead, I am about purging what isn't working and updating goals that are truly SMART - yes, I like that silly acronym that stands for smart, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely goals.  My online life exploded last year with the LinkedIn Group I manage about social media & campus recruiting, my use of twitter, following of blogs and trying to come up with material for my own blog in addition to building presentations about social media for conferences.  

As I move into 2011, my goal is to not only participate in social media but really showcase my own voice by posting a minimum of 1 blog post a week. I will be kicking it off with the upcoming series I spoke about in how to use the different social media sites for recruiting young adults. As referenced above, I have some great new research and presentation material from the conferences I spoke at throughout December from both a Canadian & US perspective that I just can’t wait to share with you!

I hope you stick around, read my latest updates, and comment on some of my new posts. I’m committing to this goal as I was recently reminded that goals are more likely to be fulfilled when written down & shared with others as you have actually committed to them. I would love to hear about some of YOUR 2011 social media goals!

All the best as you build your goals for 2011,