Let’s start with a question; Are you on LinkedIn? If yes, then you are one of the millions of professionals and job seekers that use the platform. If no, well; you should be. This type of social media platform is unique in the fact it caters directly to the B2B market. It is the professional social network, and with no distinct rivals in this niche, it has proven a highly valuable tool to one particular industry; recruitment.
In the olden days, recruiters would head hunt people based on their skills and their submitted CVs. They would have a huge rolodex filled with candidates that matched the roles their clients desired. They would then go through CVs and provide interview tips. They had huge lists filled with candidates that had been vetted and could then custom tailor both job opportunities to candidates and vice-versa. These were the days before LinkedIn. Now, LinkedIn provides an open platform that allows anyone to essentially upload their CV and skills, explain their job roles and history as well as a place for employers and clients to endorse your skills and provide references. LinkedIn is huge, with over 467million members on the site as of October 2016 with 20m members in the UK that represent 58% of the entire UK workforce, including students. That’s a lot of CVs. So how does the modern day recruiter use LinkedIn? Or, has LinkedIn killed recruiting?
In February 2015 an article was posted online entitled: ‘How LinkedIn fundamentally ruined recruitment’. The writer, Maury Hanigan, argues that LinkedIn has removed the personal aspect of recruiting and head-hunting and, as a result, has ruined the way recruitment used to run. With in-house recruiters taking over outsourcing, the lack of the personalised vetting system that good quality recruiters had, now seems lost. Our take on this notion is that the author is wrong. LinkedIn didn’t ruin recruiting, it has changed the industry and recruiters should change with it.
- LinkedIn has become one of the most successful tools for recruitment;
– Over 75% of people who recently changed jobs used LinkedIn to inform their decision
– People found through LinkedIn are 40% less likely to leave their job in the first 6 months.
– 79% of all job seekers use social media in their job search.
As a result, you have the largest network of professionals, with more people signing up every day. Even Maury Hanigan stated; ‘It is hard to deny the impact that LinkedIn, which rightfully bills itself as “the world’s largest professional network,” has had on the recruiting function.’ James Caan, the Dragon’s Den star, has himself declared that “Recruitment is an industry I love and I think LinkedIn has absolutely transformed the industry.” Whilst acknowledging that some recruiters are wary of the platform and the impact of social media upon their work, he added: “I would urge that rather than fighting change, embrace it.”
So, the question remains on how to maintain the best of the old recruitment (the personal touch), as well as embrace the huge shift that has come with LinkedIn. Well there have been several arguments and techniques tested. The one predominant theme that runs through all of this, is that of making and maintaining a good relationship through the platform. This helps ‘warm up’ a candidate so that they are not cold called by a random head hunter during the middle of the day. Now, with the aid of LinkedIn, the calls can become less cold; recruiters are able to liaise with prospective candidates online first. As Roberto Sordillo, an employee of a financial services recruitment firm based in London, told The New Economy: “You can now ‘warm-up’ the call to a certain extent as you are able to do more background research online”.
You can also build relationships with your connections on a friendlier basis without the need for pressurising them. Furthermore there are content marketing techniques that can be used to help your candidates prepare for their interviews, tips for their CVs, job hunting advice and more. This is achieved through sharing relevant content on LinkedIn and creating engagement between you and the candidate. You can also use LinkedIn’s Inmail to talk to candidates without them feeling that you are pestering them on their personal email accounts.
LinkedIn isn’t just any platform though. They quickly realised its potential as a recruiting tool and so created a set of tools to aid recruiters in their efforts. The use of Recruiter and Recruiter Lite options can help those looking for candidates both in-house and agencies. Although these options come at a premium they are invaluable tools to us for they are a way to truly get to know our candidates as well as a way to source new ones that fit each individual role.