Another Social Recruiting Reality Check

Do your organization’s recruitment marketing and social recruiting strategies deliver the best candidate experience? The latest Talent Board North American candidate experience research report can help you determine the answer.

sea-1377712_1920 smallIt was as if the very social recruiting waters parted for employers, HR professionals and recruiters last June when LinkedIn published this astonishing statistic: “A massive 90% of global professionals are interested in hearing about new job opportunities.”

People burst into Snoopy dances in their offices. Tears of joy were shed. And it’s no wonder. This revelation meant that companies have the potential to reach a historically large and receptive talent pool. But this joy was short-lived. A cold tsunami of reality came crashing down on them. Most organizations simply don’t know how to effectively leverage and target this tremendous opportunity. They struggle to identify and understand the best practices, platforms and processes for attracting the right talent and delivering an amazing candidate experience.

Well, I’ve got great news. Those challenges just got a whole lot easier to solve thanks to the Talent Board’s 2016 North American Candidate Experience Research Report. It offers a ton of fresh insights and valuable data gathered directly from more than 240 employers who put their recruiting practices under the microscope and 183,000 job seekers who shared their real-life candidate experiences, job search preferences and more. We’re talking about the largest, most reliable data set of its kind!

This report is a must-read for everyone interested in raising the bar on their talent strategy, employer brand and candidate experience in North America and even beyond. And you can get your copy just by clicking the link above.

A Taste of That Sweet, Sweet CandE Data

This year’s report explores every aspect of the candidate journey including social recruiting, which has been one of the top talent trends for the past several years. The report uncovers some eye-opening data on this subject. For example:

  • 73% of the employers surveyed are investing in social media technologies in 2016, although their investment has fallen by 13% from last year.
  • On the other hand, there has been a 10% rise in their investments in mobile-enabled technologies to a total of 79% for 2016.

What’s worth noting is this: despite employers’ ongoing investments in social recruiting, candidates are leveraging social channels like Twitter and Facebook with much less frequency—just 5% utilize Facebook career pages and a paltry 2% check out Twitter feeds and notifications. The Facebook part of the equation may change since they’ll be opening it up for company job postings, but our CandE data still gives us all another social recruiting reality check (you can revisit the first “sink or swim” reality check here).

Bottom line, investments in social media and mobile technologies are all well and good—but they’re only part of a winning talent equation. If you truly want to compete for great talent, you also need to continue to improve your candidate experience.

The Business Impact of Your Candidate Experience

At one time, a lousy candidate experience was considered a silent killer. It might have kept you from winning great talent but, for the most part, poorly treated job seekers kept their unhappy experiences to themselves. All of that has changed.

Today, people shout about their positive and negative candidate experiences from the virtual rooftops via sites like Glassdoor (and Great Place to Work and similar employer review sites). They also share their experiences with their inner circles and online social channels—sometimes almost instantly. Make no mistake, your overall candidate experience has a definitive impact on your business. Six years of global CandE Awards research has conclusively demonstrated that:

  • 41% of candidates who’ve had a negative job seeking experience say they’ll take their alliances, product purchases and relationships to other companies. That spells a loss of revenue for consumer-based businesses and critical referral network losses for all companies.
  • In contrast, 64% who rate their candidate experiences positively say they’ll increase their relationships with these employers—applying for mother jobs in the future, purchasing from them, and referring others to these companies.

So, the business impacts of your candidate experience are crystal clear. The question is this: is your recruitment marketing and social recruiting strategy hurting or helping your business and your ability to engage top talent?

Many candidates simply won’t put up with lousy, generalized, non-specific recruitment marketing or a “shotgun” approach to social channel outreach. Indeed, candidates are taking greater control of their job searches and professional destinies than ever before. Seventy-five percent now conduct their own research during a job search, and they’re diving deeper into career sites, social media and sites like Glassdoor to get a clearer picture of employers before making connections with them.

Candidate Experience Award-winning companies are stretching their targeted social prowess when it comes to marketing, sourcing and improving the overall candidate experience. For example:

  • Capital One will go as far as asking candidates (even anonymous candidates), if they’d like to talk with someone from the recruiting team about their experience via social channels (Glassdoor, LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter).
  • Lockheed Martin uses a dedicated military relations team to provide original content as subject matter experts via social channels and its own talent community.
  • T-Mobile has #WorkforusWednesday social media take-overs to share unique and engaging content using Facebook live video streaming. One example: the company shares what a real day is like in the life of a call center rep.
  • Questrade has monthly Twitter chats with real recruiters and is also quick to respond all the time through all its social channels.

The incremental investments mentioned above are paying big dividends to these companies, and they know they must keep tweaking and experimenting with the model to keep their return higher than most.

We’ve only just begun to dip our toes into the latest 2016 Talent Board CandE research data around recruitment marketing, social recruiting and the entire recruitment cycle. Do yourself and your talent acquisition strategy a favor—get a copy of the research report and do a deep dive yourself. Come on in—the data feels fine, even if the candidate experience always doesn’t.