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How Social Media is Changing the Face of Hiring


Social media has made a huge impact on recruitment and the recruitment process. Companies, head hunters, and recruitment agencies are turning to social media sites to promote available positions, research potential applicants, and make a decision on whether the applicant they have chosen is the best match for their business. On average, recruitment statistics show that around 89% will use social media at some point during the recruitment process to make a decision, with 80% of recruitment agencies using LinkedIn in particular to find potential applicants for positions they are working on.

Why Social Media?

Social media will simply tell you a lot about a person that might not be apparent on a CV or resume. A basic Facebook page can tell companies how the person conducts themselves and how they interact with other people online. It also tells recruiters about the person’s communication skills, whether they were truthful on their application, and whether there is any reason they shouldn’t be accepted for the position.

In fact, a large number of companies will now turn to social media before they even contact the applicant for the first time. This saves them time and energy and ensures that anyone they interview is the right fit for the company. Many times when I have been approached for a job myself, it is because I have been headhunted by a recruiter who has found me through Twitter, Facebook, or even Google+.

One Step Further in Recruitment

Interestingly, recruiters are taking social media one step further when hiring. For example, the Omnicom Group used Twitter to find five interns for summer work without every seeing their CV or resume.

The company took note how each applicant responded to five tweets which were posted over five days, and from this information they were able to make a decision on the best five interns for the job.

Other companies have also turned to new media instead of relying traditional hiring processes. Skype, for example, is used for interviewing potential candidates, allowing recruiters to cast a broader net instead of just looking at the local pool of candidates.

What Recruiters Look For

The majority of companies using social media for their recruitment process use this valuable social media tool to ensure that the applicant has been honest about who they say they are. Companies can match this against the CV they received. Photographs on Instagram, for example, can show talent, but poor language on tweets and bad communication skills on Facebook can reflect badly on how a future employee conducts themselves on the social media sites.

Social media pages are brimming with information on schools attended, places worked, communication skills, photographs, and so much more. Often, it’s not just about a person’s skills, but also about whether or not they will fit with the team. Social media can help companies determine this. It’s easier for recruiters to make a decision between two very qualified applicants once they have read through their social media profiles.

Digital, design, and web have also combined to bring innovation to recruiters and simple innovation like these when applying for a job speaks more to businesses these days. Infographic CVs and resumes, for example, demonstrates skills without much explanation needed.

Exactly what a company looks for when it comes to social media will vary, but one this is for sure: the social media world is forever expanding and will not be stopping in the new face of hiring.

Do you use social media to hire new employees? Or have you been hired based on your social skills, even for a non-social job?

Image Credits: mkhmarketing, spencereholtaway, qubodup

The New Media Trust Manifesto


Is this what your employee acts like online? How does that look for your brand?

In the new media world, everything is constantly changing. Sometimes, I feel that in the few hours it takes to write a post, my idea is already out of date. I have strong opinions, but I am never surprised when my opinions change. It’s not a matter of being unable to stand for something; it’s a matter of working in a wonderful, surprising, exciting industry that moves at a crazy pace and makes me all giddy to learn new things.

I say all of this because I want to talk to you about what I’m calling The New Media Trust Manifesto. Manifestos are usually long, grand statements of personal beliefs, often taking years to write and edit, but today this is not the case. I’m calling it a manifesto not because of it’s length, but because it is something that I so strongly believe that I think it will hold true not just tomorrow or next month or even next year. I think that if I live to be 500 years old, this will still be true. This isn’t a claim I make lightly, given my feelings that the new media world is constantly evolving and you have to evolve with it to survive.

The New Media Trust Manifesto is actually pretty simple and can be summarized in a single sentence: Hire the new media professionals you trust, not the ones who are the best for the job on paper.

I’ve written for several blogs over the years (not including the blogs I’ve run or am running myself). Some, like here at the BlogWorld blog, come attached with tons of freedom to choose my own topics and state my own opinions. Other clients give me a step by step list of what they want covered, when they want it covered, and how they want it covered. In every single case, without exception, the results are directly proportionate to the freedom I’ve given.

You might be thinking about hiring a new media professional to run your company’s Twitter account or become one of your bloggers or create ebooks for you. While the thought of giving complete control to someone else might make you shudder a little, having that trust is super important. It’s 100% better to hire someone you trust than someone who looks good on paper.

On paper, I’m not always the best candidate for every job. I’m relatively young and already have a lot on my plate. While I do think I’m a good writer, I’m also a horrible self-editor; proofreading is definitely not my forte and I don’t always catch even typo. I’m not an SEO expert. I’m not a social media expert.

Yet I can promise you this: I will always do the best job I can and I will go out of your way to represent your company well.

This isn’t about hiring me. I’m just using myself as an example. When you’re hiring a new media worker, that’s what you want – someone you can trust to represent your brand, even if they aren’t perfect. Joe Blogger who is an SEO expert and has a million Twitter followers might seem like the perfect candidate for the job, but ask yourself this: do you have to worry about him embarrassing your company? Does his personality fit your brand?

Story time: recently, one of my friends voiced an opinion about a company on Twitter. He didn’t say the company was bad or anything; he simply stated that he wasn’t personally a fan of their products, even though he thinks that others should check them out. In my opinion, that’s actually a good tweet – no product will be right for everyone, but you should be proud if someone who doesn’t like what you produce still thinks it’s high-quality enough to recommend to others who might have different tastes.

Unfortunately, their brand representative didn’t see it that way. He unfollowed my friend, but not only that – he publically announced on Twitter through his personal account AND the company account that he was unfollowing him. I was stunned when I saw that tweet. How utterly embarrassing for the company to have an employee that would overreact like that on Twitter.

Similarly, every year at conferences, there are a lot of people who misrepresent their employers by going out and partying hard. We talked about this on #BWEchat a few weeks ago, actually. If you want to have a few drinks, that’s fine. If you work for yourself and want to get wasted, go for it – you’re representing your own brand and you have the right to do that. But if someone is sponsoring you to be there and you’re dancing on the bar? How embarrassing for that company. Unless you’re representing a liquor company maybe!

And the fact of the matter is this: often times, I think “shame on *company name* for hiring that person” not “shame on that person.”

As a business who is hiring a new media professional, you have lots of tools available to help you determine whether or not you can trust a new employee as a brand representative. Check out their Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ profile. Look at the pictures they’ve posted online. Read their personal blog.

If you do some research on me, for example, you’ll find that I’m not by any means timid about voicing my opinions. You’ll also notice that I curse on personal sites/accounts but not when I’m writing for clients, that my hair has pink streaks, and I don’t own a business suit. If you were considering hiring me, these are all factors to take into consideration. For some companies, these things will be positive and for others they will be negative. That’s okay. All I’m saying is that it’s about more than asking for a sample of my writing to see if I’m a competent blogger.

I’d even take this a step farther and say that new media trust needs to extend to every single person you hire, whether they’re managing your Facebook page or doing tasks unrelated to social media. Everyone has the ability to have personal social media accounts, and most do; don’t act surprised if they mention your company. People talk about their jobs online all the time, and while I don’t think it is fair for you to require employees to only say positive things about you when they’re using their personal accounts, there’s a difference between voicing a negative opinion and embarrassing the company.

A good rule of thumb is this: pretend that you had a major company secret that you were announcing next week. Do you trust every single employee you’ve hired to know that secret today?

Another question to ask yourself: Do you trust your employees enough to send them to dinner with a potential investor?

The New Media Trust Manifesto is about hiring people who are an extension of you. Companies that don’t run the risk of hiring people who have the potential of being PR nightmares. Skills can be taught. Tact and maturity are things you either have or you do not.

Social Media Explosion Not Translating into Jobs, Yet.


We all know the hype behind social media, heck, we all LOVE the hype behind it.  We all know how much easier it is to get in touch, stay in touch and find New people to want to be in touch with, when you’re using social networking, and any or all of the tools of social media at your disposal.  It’s easier to find people, meet people, and, if the original claims were true, find employment.  Or is it?

So far, not so good according to new reports.  While social media and social networking has been lauded as the newest, best and brightest way to network and find new forms of employment, it doesn’t look like the results are living up to the hype…yet.  Instead of the onslaught of new social media and the technology behind it leading to the creation of a whole new set of job skills, job descriptions and yes, job openings, it seems like so far people are turning to internal, existing employees and just asking them to adopt new responsibilities.

Here’s what JetBlue had to say, that says a whole lot about the current hiring status of some of the biggest, and most active companies when it comes to new media:

“Rather than hiring external social-media savvy people…we looked internally for people who happened to be active on social media in their personal lives.”

Will this change?  Right now, we can’t say, but given the current recession state of our economy, it seems a lot more likely that internal hunting is going to continue to take place, and a lot of these responsibilities that might have otherwise required a new employee, are going to be passed around to the existing ones.

This isn’t to say it’ll always be this way, anything could happen, and all of you job hunters would be extremely wise to add as many new social media and social networking skills to your arsenal.  Just a thought.

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