In this article we look at how recruitment professionals can use Guild to identify and engage with prospective candidates whilst delivering value that encourages brand advocacy and long-term relationships.

The changing nature of recruitment

Recruitment often happens in a vacuum. A business will decide that it needs to fill a role, creates a job description and distributes it to a large pool of people. Who applies is largely a function of a short term ‘marketing’ effort and timing.

However, the rise in portfolio careers and increasing focus on purpose-led, meaningful work is changing what job seekers look for in an employer. The best candidates respond to recruitment strategies that mirror their objectives – highly engaged, value-led and personal. Where once it was the employer who did the choosing, people are often assessing which companies they want to be associated with even outside of the recruitment process.

A recent survey by Glassdoor put the average cost to hire in the UK at £3,000, with the process taking 27.5 days. 88% of respondents characterised informed candidates as the best quality candidates, and yet finding quality candidates is by far the biggest challenge they face.

Increasingly organisations are understanding that to be effective, they need to create ways to engage with prospective candidates outside of the hiring process. The onus is on them to demonstrate why they would be a great place to work and create the kind of employee advocacy that brings in top talent through recommendation and referral.

What is social recruitment?

Hiring managers have adapted to this shift over the last decade, with social media becoming central to the hiring process. Professional platforms like LinkedIn provide specialist recruitment tools that tap into existing networks and groups. More informal social networks like Facebook and even Instagram gather together brand fans and create a pervasive presence, growing awareness and engagement which can be harnessed to find talent.

This approach certainly helps target a more engaged, and aspirational audience, but it’s still largely reliant on broadcasting to a large pool of people and having them amplify the message.

Developing a community strategy fosters connection, interaction and alignment behind a purpose. More personal and interactive, communities are an altogether more transparent way to convey the culture and values of your business, whilst attracting highly engaged, passionate participants.

Done well, not only can they help hiring managers proactively identify individuals who might be a good fit when the time is right, they may even help to identify skills gaps that need to be filled.

What about recruiters?

Social recruitment isn’t just an in-house phenomenon. Recruitment consultants are uniquely placed to create value-add communities that support their candidates through the job hunt process and build peer to peer networks that can be a source of encouragement and motivation.

Recruiters in a particular niche might also find that there is an appetite for specialist knowledge of hiring practices in the sector and a bird’s eye view of the market place, encompassing changing demand for skills, salary insight, training opportunities or resources that makes for a valuable community even when individuals aren’t actively looking.

How can Guild fit into your recruitment strategy?

A key challenge in social recruitment is cutting through the noise of the main social media platforms. Even when users do engage with your company, it is often through a single brand profile leading to large, unmanageable groups that are a useful way to enhance broadcast messaging, but only offer limited personal connection.

Social recruiting can also throw up concerns around privacy and intrusiveness. People don’t necessarily want to mix work with their social profiles, and some may not be comfortable with activity online that suggests they’re interested in a new role.

Guild provides a GDPR-compliant, ad-free space where you can host your communities without the distractions of large social media platforms. It’s ideally suited to creating intimate purpose-led groups that attract high calibre participants who are intentionally engaging with your hosted discussions. And because it helps to drive valuable connections, groups have a longevity that supports ongoing recruitment needs.

Advantages of social recruitment:

  • Informed candidates – engaged community participants are intentionally interacting with your business. They already have a strong sense of your goals and how you work.
  • Trust – building long lasting, purpose driven connections with individuals gives business and candidate an additional level of confidence in hiring decisions.
  • Advocacy – even more than referrals and recommendations, continued community involvement by current and past employees is a testament to you’re the way your business treats its people.
  • Accountability – there’s a certain amount of organisational vulnerability required to host an effective community which means the best communities are run by businesses that consistently live their values trust their participants.
  • Customer satisfaction – employees and candidates are customers too. Effective community marketing engages and retains customers, even has it has the ability to find new recruits.
  • Unforeseen opportunities – sometimes you find the person before you realise there’s a role to be filled. Community interactions can identify people with ideas and approaches that would have a significant impact on your business.
  • Reduction in time and cost to hire Ultimately, social recruitment has the ability to speed up the hiring process and make it more likely that you will find the right candidates.

Social recruitment isn’t right for every organisation or for every role, and community recruitment requires investment and commitment. But it does have the capacity to accelerate and greatly enhance the recruitment process for both prospective employees and the business.

If you’d like to find out more about building effective communities with Guild, get in touch.

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