5 Reasons Every Job Description Will Have A Social Network Built Around It

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In 2012, more than 90 percent of companies will use social media recruiting in some way. But only 73 percent have successfully hired someone via social media, with only 20 percent seeing an improvement in time to hire.

So what’s the deal? Why aren’t the numbers more consistent? And better yet, why do you still feel a little confused and uneasy about social recruiting?

Because everyone is using it differently! But don’t worry, I have some secret tricks that can help you.

The best way to streamline your social recruiting process is to build a social network around every job.

An “old school” network around every job

What do I mean by this? First off, an “old school” social network already exists around every job. This social network consists of three key parties:

  1. Hiring Team (typically 2 to 7 people for most businesses) — This could be the hiring manager, recruiter, human resources person, and the peers who would work with this new hire.
  2. Candidates (typically around 500 to 2,000 people) — This group includes active and the prized “passive” candidates.
  3. Connectors (typically 2 to 20 people) — This group is talked about less often but is key. The connectors are well-networked people related to your organization who want to see you succeed. This could be your employees (the ones outside your hiring team), your shareholders, your partners, or family and friends.

Currently, very few of these groups use social media to organize around each job. Instead, here’s how it currently works:

  • Hiring Team — An HR person or hiring manager creates a job “req” and posts it somewhere (on your website or Craigslist, Monster, etc.).
  • Candidates — They hear about your job and apply or try to ask questions through email or web forms.
  • Connectors — The well-connected people associated with you help spread the word, as do employees (who might even be offered a referral fee if a hire comes through them).

The current process? Inefficient and broken

While the job may be put up on Facebook, LinkedIn, and/or Twitter, these three groups are typically not organized using social media.

That’s all about to change. In the future, the hiring team, connectors, and candidates will all interact around each job description.

Why am I so certain? First off, the current process is inefficient and broken. Nearly all hiring professionals I speak with admit to the following:

  • The hiring team does a poor job of writing a job description.
  • Employers wish they could get more referrals from people they know and trust.
  • The prized passive job candidate is not going to apply to a job through a cumbersome application form or by responding to third-party recruiters who often irritate them.

Digging deeper, here are five reasons every job description will soon go social:

1. Crowdsourcing makes writing your job description easier

Crowdsourcing took over retail (Groupon), encyclopedias (Wikipedia), funding (Kickstarter), and many other industries — and jobs will be no different.

To create the best possible job ad/req, you are going to want to involve as many of the hiring team and “connectors” as possible.

“The more you tell, the more you sell,” as David Oglivy once said.

2. Video and pictures are coming to job descriptions

You wouldn’t buy a home without attending an open house, and quality job candidates are not going to consider your job opportunity unless they can visualize the job.

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Expect pictures and video to soon be ubiquitous for the innovative employers among you.

3. Employees are your best social recruiters

Employees provide the highest quality job candidate leads, and social media now allows them to easily share jobs with their massive networks.

Some early data suggests that — for each Facebook Like, tweet or LinkedIn share — an employee provides for a job, five to 10 people within their network will check it out!

4. Connectability in hiring is key

Candidates are drawn to companies at which they already know people. That person can be their “Obi-Wan Kenobi” and guide them through evaluating the job opportunity.

Social media services now allow candidates to easily see how they’re connected to you and your team.

5. Short real-time bursts of communication are upon us

Blog-style commenting is now finding its way into job descriptions. And why shouldn’t it!?

The next generation of job seekers have grown up on texting, tweeting, instant messaging, and Facebook status updates — they are going to expect to be able to jot down a quick question or comment to you and hear back!

All job descriptions will become social networks one day soon. Will yours?

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4 Comments on “5 Reasons Every Job Description Will Have A Social Network Built Around It

  1. I’m may be biased, but I strongly believe a social network can be build around every job description. Here’s a prime example: http://ongig.com/salesforce-case-study

  2. good points made. I got my current job at engagio (www.engag.io) by engaging in the comment sections of many blogs posts. This did two things; 1) it was a terrific educational tool and 2)built relationships based on conversations which is more powerful than simply retweeting or sharing. I would definitely recommend job seekers to build a strong digital profile based on blogging, comments, tweets, curation and other tools  

  3. Great tips, Rob! And actually, your connectors are KEY in generating those job leads. If you’re really wanting to using crowdsourcing as a way to involve your hiring team and connectors, you should try using gamification methods in tandem with that. You could use financial, charity, and prize incentives with your hiring team or employees to generate leads or generate a career following via social media. Using social rewards can also increase the desire to collaborate and help out, by giving your teams “goals” and “deadlines” that they can achieve.

  4. Great points made in this article! Connectors and connectability is so important. Word of mouth referrals are now easier than ever to receive due to the ability to locate connections on social media. This not only boosts hiring potential for the candidate who receives a referral, but the candidate has the ability to gain insider information regarding the culture and true job description. The portion of this article that I really enjoy is the use of video and pictures for job descriptions. This could really set employers apart and draw in more qualified candidates.

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