If you talk to just about anyone who works in talent acquisition, they’ll say that recruiting in today’s market is harder and more challenging than ever before. Between the shifting expectations of job seekers to the increased competition for top talent, companies have been forced to improve and modernize their recruiting strategies.
One of the biggest trends in recruiting over the past decade has been the rise of social media to attract and convert talent. This practice even got its own buzz term – 'social recruiting' - but this HR trend has managed to stick around and evolve as social media has done the same. And it’s the forward-thinking organizations who have taken advantage of these changes that have benefited the most.
This is why it is critical for companies (especially small businesses) to actively use social media to aid in recruiting efforts. But in order to get the best ROI, recruiting leaders need to stay on top of the latest trends taking place within the social media world.
For 2018 in particular, there are four major trends that recruiters and talent acquisition teams need to watch.
1) LinkedIn is Now More than Just a Professional Network
When social media recruiting first rose to prominence, LinkedIn was the platform of choice for recruiters and candidates alike. Considered the “professional social network,” LinkedIn use this distinction to differentiate from competitors like Facebook and Twitter.
However, as LinkedIn began to lag behind other social networks, and as new platforms rose in popularity, some within the industry began to wonder if LinkedIn was still worth the time and resources. It definitely is, and here's why:
In 2017, LinkedIn officially hit 530 million members, an astonishing and impressive feat. When you dig a little deeper into how this renewed growth took place, it has to do with a major shift in the use of the platform. Instead of being just a networking site, LinkedIn has shifted into a major content platform.
With 100,000 new articles being published every week, LinkedIn is producing new, organic content at a record pace. This presents creative recruiting teams an opportunity to change their LinkedIn identity, and attract candidates on the platform in new ways. Failing to take advantage of the “new” LinkedIn will almost certainly cause organizations to lose top talent to their more digitally-focused competition.
2) Instagram Stories are the Next Big Thing for Social Recruiting
The rise of Instagram over the last several years has been perhaps the biggest opportunity for social recruiting in a long time. The employer branding opportunities Instagram presents can be a vital component of a talent acquisition strategy, and when the platform released their Instagram Stories feature this past year, it once again changed the game for social recruiting.
According to dubdub, a mobile video platform, Instagram Stories receive 35% more views for brands compared to Snapchat Stories. In addition, a different study conducted by Iconosquare found that the rise of Instagram Stories has led to a decrease in regular post engagement.
This means that companies using Instagram for employer branding and recruiting purposes need to jump on this trend now, or risk missing out on followers, engagement and (more importantly) potential new hires.
It wouldn’t surprise me at all if by the end of 2018, Instagram Stories are major part of successful social recruiting strategies.
3) Generation Z has (Finally) Arrived
It seems like only yesterday that recruiting teams had to make major adjustments to their efforts because of Millennials, but just as most talent acquisition departments figured out how to attract and convert this group of job seekers, Gen Z has arrived to once again disrupt the recruiting industry.
We won’t spend time detailing all the differences between Millennials and Gen Z (you can find some here), but for recruiting teams, understanding what Gen Z expects when looking for jobs and internships is crucial, so that your process is optimized for when this group hits the market in full force.
Growing up in an almost-completely digital world, the expectations of Gen Z when it comes to all things digital exceed even those of Millennials. This means that they're active on social media, especially the latest, trending networks.
By not keeping up with the latest social media updates (or worse not being on social networks at all), employers of all sizes risk missing out completely on this key demographic. Doing so would deal a major blow to recruiting efforts as Gen Z takes encompasses a larger share of the job market.
4) Passive Candidates are More Prevalent than Ever
Another recruiting buzz term that's risen in popularity is the 'passive candidate'. These are people who are currently employed and aren’t actively looking for a new opportunity, but would be open to discussing a new role if it came along.
With upwards of 70-75% of the workforce now considered passive, social media enables businesses to provide useful, educational content aimed at this candidate pool to get them familiar with your brand. Social listening tools in particular are valuable resources when trying to find this type of candidate.
By getting passive candidates engaged on social media, companies can start to forge relationships which can help convince your ideal candidates to leave their current role for one at your organization in the future. Without a social recruiting strategy, this would prove to be an extremely difficult task.
Don’t underestimate how important social media is in attracting passive candidates.
Social Recruiting is Here to Stay
When social media and recruiting first mixed, it was met with a lot of resistance from the talent acquisition community, however as companies began to see the value in social recruiting - and actually saw results from this method - it became a common practice in the industry.
As social media continues to evolve, and new platforms come into the market, it appears that social recruiting will continue to be a key part of modern talent acquisition strategies. The companies and recruiting teams that think outside the box stand to benefit the most - and attract the best possible talent.