Simplicant: Social Recruiting Strategy, Social Media RecruitmentFacebook — the largest social networking platform – went public a few weeks ago, and not everyone may have been able to “like” how the market reacted. Regardless of where the stock price is, there’s no question that Facebook has been a pioneer in bringing change (good and bad) in regards to how people communicate with each other, from its initial beginnings in a Harvard dorm room to the major makeover known as Timeline.

The recent uproar regarding Facebook’s IPO may be shifting attention to a debate around the value of the stock.

The reality is that Facebook is a growing and important social networking platform and is still poised to be an important player in any social recruiting strategy. Let us assess some of these important characteristics.

Facebook Continues to Have a Massive Reach
Let’s look at what Facebook has achieved over the past eight years. As of March 2012, the social network has 901 million active users. Through all the interface changes, privacy concerns, and personnel drama, Facebook has continued to grow, with its reach spreading worldwide.

For many, Facebook is a constant presence in their lives, serving as the most popular method for communicating with their friends and family. The average user now spends roughly eight hours per month on Facebook (a few years ago, it was five). In addition, Facebook also captures 14.6 percent of an Internet user’s time when compared to a combined two percent for all other social networking sites. What’s the takeaway? Facebook will continue to grow and evolve despite bad press or hiccups along the way. It is an important part of any social recruiting strategy.

The Popular Hangout for Talent
According to a recent infographic, 93 percent of organizations are actively using social networks to recruit new employees and it’s pretty obvious why. With half of the world’s Internet users on the platform, Facebook is a key element in a company’s recruiting strategy and bound to be an ideal place for recruiters to promote jobs, source candidates, and get some background information.

Recent data indicates that Facebook is one of the top social networks for job searching, with 44 percent of users using the platform to find a career. Highly social users (called “super socials”) are even savvier: 28 percent found their last job through social networking platforms, and 85 percent of those did so through Facebook.

For recruiters, Facebook can easily contribute in their recruiting strategy by building a “full picture” for a candidate. Since there are many job seekers on the social network, it’s easier to gauge how a candidate can fit in with company culture and with certain teams based on how they present themselves on the platform. It’s a good supplement to have for both parties, in addition to a cover letter and a resume.

Effective Social Recruiting Takes Some Work
Although we can firmly assess that job seekers are using Facebook to find a desirable career, the way recruiters should seek these candidates may be the real challenge for their recruiting strategy. As we’ve recently seen, asking for a candidate’s Facebook password isn’t the right way to go when utilizing social recruitment. As with any campaign, building a solid social recruiting strategy takes work, persistence, and perhaps some trials and errors.

First, figure out what you’re looking for in a candidate. For instance, perhaps you’d like them to be local, hold a Masters degree, and currently employed in your industry. Once you’ve got a target candidate description, you can, of course, freely search through Facebook. However, a better recruiting strategy is to use a social recruitment platform that specializes in attracting, managing and recruiting the right talent. Next-gen platforms would allow organizations to involve their employees in the recruiting process by providing them with an easy way to share open jobs with their contacts on various social networks. This helps you gain the right candidates on Facebook without going through the hassle of blind searching and cold-calling.

When all referral information is tracked and you have the ability to collect comments and feedback from various referring sources, the amount of information received on a candidate through this mechanism provides great insights into how suitable the candidate would be for working from a cultural fit perspective.

Facebook continues to be a viable platform to find candidates a has an important place in any social recruiting strategy. Users aren’t going away just yet and the platform is still growing. At the moment, Facebook has one of the most engaged user bases in the world, and it has continued to improve the level of engagement for that user base over the past eight years, whether we’ve realized it or not.

What do you think? How does Facebook contribute to your social recruiting strategy? What are some things you see for the future?

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