Social recruiting? There are many questions that immediately come to mind upon reading the title of this post, and although it is not a clearly defined approach or set of tactics, it is a conceptual approach defined as:
“…the process of sourcing or recruiting candidates through the use of social platforms as promotional and/or advertising channels.”
But how does this relate to my restaurant catering program, you ask?
Well, although you probably search for your next team member through more traditional channels, social recruiting could be an added opportunity to share your request with a much larger audience and cast your net a little wider when attracting potential candidates. Millenials searching for their next career step using channels such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, and using these free sites to post job opportunities means that you create a connection almost immediately. Some tips to get the best out of your venture into the social media job world:
- It doesn’t matter if you don’t have a huge presence on social media because social media is searchable. Twitter, Facebook and Google + use hash-tags to identify a topic, so if you’re including #job, #catering, or #foodservice in your postings online, then those looking for opportunities using those search terms are going to come across your information (and they don’t even have to be a follower of yours!)
- Use images in your postings to grab attention, or videos to share information quickly and easily with your target audience
- Share company information such as articles, images, or documents that support your opening and give prospective candidates some additional information to help them decide if they want to apply to be a part of your team
- Engage with your networks – if you see someone sharing your Tweets or Facebook posts, say something to them; encourage conversations and questions; direct applicants those interacting with you to other areas (such as the Careers page on your website) for more information
- If you are part of a group or online network, help out other brands if they are searching for a new hire – it may seem like you are helping the competition, but when it comes time for you to share an opportunity (especially one that they don’t have), they are more likely to help you out in return
- Join groups online – LinkedIn is great for this. Here you can post job information in groups specific to your industry (in this case, catering) and capture the attention of a very specific group of people. For example, if you want to hire for a Catering Sales Manager, you can find any number of Catering groups (we have one too for the The Catering Institute) where you can post a discussion topic and include attachments with the new updates to the platform. This gets included in update emails from LinkedIn itself, and can also be included in the group’s weekly email message
- Use social media to encourage referrals. Ask your existing team members to share career opportunities on their own networks and reward them for anyone that makes it through as a successful candidate (even if they don’t make it through to employment, success within the interview period could be grounds for a small incentive to the referrer). Those who advocate for the business are likely to be more selective in who they refer when there is a rewards program in place, and also because they have a vested interest in the team they are part of. Don’t forget that like socializes with like – those on your team who’s qualities you admire, are likely to have connections to those in their network that are similar
- Be sure to share your story as you recruit socially. These platforms are all designed to share more than a simple piece of text – rich media, links and document uploads all help to create a fuller picture so that the candidates reaching out to you are just as informed about you as you are about them
Don’t think of social media as somewhere to only create promotions, share information and talk about your industry and brand (of course, you should still be doing that!); think of it as a tool to help boost your existing recruitment services, one that is much more affordable (it’s free!) and that may even generate awareness for your brand that wasn’t there before. It’s a win-win situation for both you and your next hire.