5 Ways To Effectively Recruit Candidates On Social Media

As new generations move into the workforce and make an impact in their organizations, they are also making an impact in the recruiting world. One of the biggest areas where recruiting is changing is with social media. Millennials and Gen Z use social media constantly, as it seems like they are always connecting, posting, and sharing their life experiences online.

But it’s not just millennials and Gen Z using social media. These days, everyone has a social media profile, even your grandparents! And although your grandparents aren’t using social media to find a new job, this shows that social media is now a part of everyone’s life on a daily basis.

This has made recruiting evolve, as 84 percent of organizations now use social media to recruit employees, according to SHRM, and is increasing by 54 percent over the past five years.

The feeling is mutual with job seekers. In an Aberdeen Group survey of job seekers between the ages of 18 and 34, 73 percent said they landed their last job through a social media platform.

To reach this segment of social media job seekers, you need to be actively recruiting on social media by filling your pages with ads, videos, and more. In addition to recruiting ads, you also should be using social media to build your brand and promote your workplace culture. All of this together leads to an effective recruitment strategy that reaches the modern workforce.

Post Ads

The main way to reach candidates on social media is to post job advertisements. However, you have to do it the right way, so that you can reach and engage more people with your ads. Go beyond plain text posts by using an image. Research shows that social media posts that have a visual element to them are shared 40 times more than text posts.

Another factor to consider is the regularity of your posts. How often are you posting about your open positions? While not every social media post should be a job ad, you should be consistently broadcasting what positions you’re hiring for. Promoting certain job ads is another way to reach a broader audience on social media, and can boost brand awareness, as well.

Try Videos

Organizations are relying on video recruiting more and more. Whether it's video interviewing, posting videos about company culture, or utilizing video job descriptions, this demonstrates that you're on top of technology trends, and appeals to millennials and Gen Z.

study by Ongig shows that job-seekers spend more than triple the time watching video job ads (three minutes) than they do reading a text job ad (55 seconds). More research reveals that video job ads attract 40 percent more interest. This captures the candidate’s attention for a longer period, so they get a deeper understanding of your organization.

Do Research

Recruiting on social media not only allows you to reach more potential candidates, but it also lets you look at candidates’ social media profiles. You can gain more information about the candidate by looking at their LinkedIn page, seeing their endorsements and connections, and reading additional details about their work history. This gives you a better picture of how they interact and present themselves online, and can separate out the top candidates.  

However, doing research on candidates on social media can also be dangerous. One of the biggest potential risks with social media is the practice of employers and managers looking at potential candidates or current employees’ social media profiles. The risk lies in the fact that, by checking out their profile page, employers can learn information (religion, race, or disability) about the employee that could impact their perception or treatment of the person. Employees also often use social media as a forum to complain about pay, working conditions, and treatment by management, all of which are protected under federal law when two or more employees are involved (or give the post a thumbs up – likes and emojis count!). Additionally, several states have implemented laws which prohibit employers from making employment decisions based on certain off-duty conduct such as tobacco use, legally using alcohol or legal drugs, political activity, and being arrested.

So, while doing research and getting more information about your candidate is beneficial, be careful that you aren’t violating any laws by doing this.

Build Your Brand

Your brand is another way to engage candidates and attract top talent to your organization through social media. Having clean, active, and engaging social media pages portray your values and show your organization’s culture.

According to iCIMSa leading applicant tracking system, 94 percent of job seekers said they would be more likely to apply for a job if the organization is on top of their brand online.

Post employee-centered photos from company events or volunteer activities. Show them smiling, having fun, and making a difference.

These kinds of posts build your brand and establish an identity that your organization can continue to use and grow.

Your recruitment ad messaging should also reflect what your organization cares about. Make sure that you’re presenting a consistent brand message through all mediums and in person when the candidate comes in for an interview.

Promote Your Culture

To help structure your brand, social media presence, and employee engagement, create a culture that promotes and proves a sense of community, belonging, and acceptance. This will have a big impact on your employees, your overall brand, and your potential candidates.

Do you host employee parties or social hours? Don’t be afraid to show pictures of them on Facebook. Have an employee-run culture committee? Share photos of their activities on Instagram.

A strong culture centered around employees and making a difference shown on social media engages your current employees and encourages potential candidates, since they see that your organization is lively, active, and exciting.

A Social Strategy

With more millennials and Gen Zs entering the workforce every day, having a social media strategy to effectively recruit them to your organization shows that you understand them, you’re up on the latest trends, and you have the culture to make them successful for the long run.

Are you currently recruiting candidates on social media?


Katie Roth

Katie Roth has been in a leadership role in the employment industry for the majority of her career. Currently, she is Manager, Talent Acquisition for Oasis, a Paychex® Company. Katie is a graduate of the University of Iowa and is certified by both the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), as a Senior Professional in Human Resources, and the National Association of Personnel Services, as a Certified Personnel Consultant (CPC).


July 5, 2017

Posted by

Katie Roth