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Facebook and Twitter: The Untapped Hiring Resources?

Jobseekers are hopping on the social media bandwagon fairly quickly; now it’s time for hiring managers to do the same. According to Bullhorn’s 2013 North American Social Recruiting Activity Report, which polled more than 160,000 recruiters and hiring managers on their usage of Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter for hiring, not enough recruiters and hiring managers are utilizing Facebook and Twitter for the potential they can provide. And with many candidates looking to connect with employers through those very networks, hiring managers may want to rethink their strategies.

Of those surveyed, only 22% and 27%, respectively, used Facebook and Twitter for their hiring needs this past year—and those who used them exclusively amongst the three social networks only formed a meager minority at 2% (Facebook) and 1% (Twitter). Instead, LinkedIn takes the lead with 64% of recruiters using LinkedIn exclusively and 98% including it in some combination with Twitter and/or Facebook.

Though LinkedIn is a great resource that we highly advocate, especially since it’s geared specifically toward the professional side of social networking, we urge that hiring managers don’t underestimate the recruiting power Facebook and Twitter can harbor. According to Bullhorn’s study, the  greatest opportunity for the staffing industry in 2013 was its “access to passive candidates via social media,” not excluding these two social networking giants. A hiring manager’s best bet would be to leverage all three platforms to gain the widest exposure, something that only 12% of the surveyed recruiters reported doing.

We’ve written about how employers in the healthcare industry can benefit from using these tactics, but this applies to all employers and hiring managers regardless of industry. Creating a comprehensive and frequently-updated Facebook page and Twitter profile can help your company not only find a certain quantity of candidates, but a certain quality as well: namely, those candidates who research and take time to acquaint themselves with a company in order to determine their missions, values, and culture. Creating such pages allows a company to build a brand and rapport for itself to passively advertise to those looking for work and actively source for candidates.

More recruiters reported using Twitter in some way or another than Facebook in the survey, but according to the study’s findings, Facebook has a higher success rate of providing qualified candidates. Data suggests that Facebook “provides recruiters with candidates of the same and potentially higher quality than Twitter” – probably because it allows for a more complete picture of a company than a simple Twitter feed and now allows candidates to showcase professional skills. However, Twitter can also be an exceptional tool for employers and jobseekers alike, especially since the app, TwitterJobSearch, has gained popularity by allowing employers to post jobs and enabling candidates to apply to them through the network.

Still, it remains that in 2013 50% of North American recruiters using Twitter had fewer than 50 followers and 41% smaller Facebook network sizes than the average U.S. user, despite the finding that the bigger the network size, the more applications were received per job posted. With that knowledge, why wouldn’t hiring managers want to amp up their Facebook and Twitter presences? Who knows—there could be an entire pool of candidates for the job you’re looking to fill waiting on the other side of that “login” button.

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