To complement my article on using Twitter for talent acquisition I decided to talk about Facebook as well. This is another site which is becoming more popular among recruiters, however, there are still ways to improve. There are 3 ways to use Facebook that are the most effective.
Facebook is one of the largest sites for recent college graduates. It is certainly the most popular site for the demographic. The average age of a Facebook user is 25. More importantly though, there is more traffic to Facebook that any job board you can think of (yes that includes Monster and Careerbuilder). So if you don’t have some sort of presence on Facebook you are missing out on millions of potential candidates.
Here are what I consider the 3 most effective ways to use Facebook for recruiters.But keep in mind, creating a presence on Facebook is a commitment. It is a long-term relationship building strategy, not a quick hit to fill a position. When using Facebook to acquire talent think of yourself as a resource not a recruiter.
1. Create a company page
This is step one. Create a page for your company on Facebook. You can do this by setting it up with an email address. Preferably a company email address where more than one person knows the password (for example if you have a mailbox for resumes that everyone in HR uses, use that email address). The reason I suggest this is because if you happen to let go the person who is updating the Facebook page, well, you don’t want them to have access through their personal email, then you have no control over it. Hey, I’m in HR, I have to worry about these things!
Your company page should have an active presence. You should update your status regularly. Updating your status is great for many reasons, but for these purposes keep these two in mind. 1) You can update your status when you are recruiting for a specific position and 2) you can update your status when you or your company is doing something interesting, it gives people the ability to socialize and engage with you. Engagement is the goal of this. Another way to create an active presence on Facebook is to link any company blogs to the page. This way every time your company posts a blog it will appear on the page. This gives people something to see regularly, a reason to keep coming back and more content to engage with.
Be sure to talk about things on your page, or in any blogs, that are positive and negative. What are the successes your company has, what are some tough things you are facing, maybe its hard to expand marketing resources on a limited budget, just be sure not to always put happy positive fluff. Job seekers are wary of companies that only spout out positive news. Be transparent and show who you really are.
Be sure to designate someone to manage the Facebook page. It won’t take all your time, especially if you have things linked to it like the blog or other applications, but you do want someone to monitor, to change the status and to engage with people. The worst thing you can do it to put up a site and never post anything or engage, it makes your company look very bad, not just to candidates but to potential clients or investors. Using social media is a form of branding, be sure that your efforts are in alignment with your company’s branding efforts. Talk to marketing or PR to get ideas or guidelines for this.
Facebook is a massive database of people! Everyone a potential candidate! There are more users on Facebook then on CareerBuilder and Monster combined! You can use the search function to find them. You can search on anything! You can even look for people at your competitors (assuming there are no non-solicitation agreements in the way!). You can search for people in specific geographic areas with certain job titles, you can look for people who went to specific schools you want to target. The options are pretty endless, and you can be as general or specific as you would Like! That’s a no brainer!
Think Craigslist only free! You can post classifieds in the market place, including job listings for free. Many recruiters I know have had a lot of success with this. If the average age of a Facebook user is 25 and you are looking regularly for position with 1-3 years experience then you should be posting your jobs on the Marketplace. It’s free! It’s Free! I can’t say it enough! In an economy that is still struggling we all need to keep our costs down, you can’t argue with free!
Give these strategies a whirl. It’s fairly simple it just requires a little time. And if you don’t even have time to spare you can always pay someone to do it for you! CareerBuilder has teamed up with Facebook to help employers create spectacular company pages and even do all the social ads for them! It’s not cheap, but it sure takes a lot of the guess-work out of it if using social media for talent management is new to you. So get out there, start networking! Find the next rock star for you company!