• We just made a $60K+ placement from a Facebook candidate!

      Written by Ben Batten, Country General Manager VOLT
      29 May 2014

      A few years ago, I could not have imagined that building a Facebook community, and advertising our jobs there would lead to a senior placement. In fact if you had suggested it to me, I might have laughed. But just last month, we did, we made a senior director level placement from a candidate that applied from our Facebook page. I think our efforts as a company still have a considerable way to go in terms of how we utilize Facebook as a sourcing tool, and what content we share there, but it goes to show the (significant) shift that is occurring and that candidates are using multiple avenues to source for jobs, and that it’s not always the young(er) demographic doing so.

      There are two distinct elements to social media recruiting, that being community building, engagement and job adverts via Linkedin, Twitter, Facebook and blogs, and then there is proactive sourcing via Linkedin. Most of the success that people write about and talk about is the latter, Linkedin used in this way therefore, is not really any different to any other job resume search databases like Monster. What Linkedin does offer however, over relatively static job search portals, is a more dynamic real time candidate pool, plus an ability to engage with that audience, and thereby gaining credibility, which increases the chance of a reply to an Inmail or invite, when the time comes.

      According to Linkedin, Singapore has one of the highest percentage users of the population and professional workforce, than most, if not all other countries or cities. That does not mean that it is the answer to the recruitment puzzle. Indeed Linkedin is but a tool, albeit a very useful tool. In analyzing the source of our candidates as a firm last month, less than 5% came from physical applications via a social media tool. About 50% came from job portal adverts and our own website, and the remainder, about 45% came from direct headhunting using names generated from market mapping using researchers, Linkedin and direct calling to obtain names.

      Fast forward another few years, I am sure this number of physical applications will increase from social media tools substantially, but only if the audience engaged with those tools is the right demographic. An investment that we made in increasing our likes to our Facebook page with sponsored ads, lead to a substantial increase in ‘likes’ although breaking it down, none of the new likes fell into the mid to senior target candidate pool that we have as a specialist recruiter in this space.

      I think what is interesting though, and what is harder to measure at the present time, is what percentage of those followers or individuals that see our corporate social media feeds, then go at another time to our website, or another job board and search for our company, and then apply. It’s somewhat like subliminal advertising, in the same way fast food companies advertise around meal times. Being present, with the right material, will create a lasting impression, that will be remembered when a candidate thinks about applying for a new job. Presence is paramount, in the right place and consistently.

      In 2014, what I think is more pressing for our industry, is how easy it is for candidates to apply for jobs. Singapore has more mobile phones than it does population, by some 50%. What this means, is that the workforce are on their phones, a lot, and to that end, filling out lots of forms, lots of questions, requesting lots of data, is not practical when such a significant number of candidates will be applying from their phones. Away from their desks, in the toilet, on their lunch breaks, away from the spying eyes of colleagues and bosses. Having a website, and means for candidates to apply quickly and easily, with as few clicks as possible, will therefore be the differentiator in the candidate experience and number of (quality) candidate applications received.

      Recruitment Consultants will always offer a number of distinct advantages over clients managing their own recruitment process. It’s not just in-depth expertise (and time) in assessing and shortlisting large volumes of candidates in a specific niche. It’s market knowledge and the ability to reach out to candidates without being dismissed for preconceived brand perceptions, whilst maintaining confidentiality for both parties. That is significant, and something that neither technology nor an in-house recruiter can replicate.