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Jobvite Q&A: How You Can Leverage Twitter’s Strategies for Recruiting on Twitter

We recently spoke with Erin Osterhaus, who researches and reviews HR solutions at Software Advice, to learn more about her findings from a discussion she had with Twitter’s recruiting programs officer, Anitra Collins. In that conversation, Collins described some of Twitter’s methods for finding top talent on Twitter, which include re-Tweeting job posts from employees’ personal handles, showing visuals of company culture and using hashtags to find the perfect audience. While these tactics have helped Twitter connect with solid candidates, we wanted to find out from Erin how other organizations can adopt Twitter’s strategies and how they might need to adapt their approaches.

Jobvite:

In your opinion, what is the single most effective strategy Twitter is leveraging through their own platform to get the best candidates to their job listings?

Erin:

They’re active, and for lack of a better word, they’re just cool. Twitter’s recruiting handle, @JoinTheFlock, does a great job of posting interesting Tweets that anyone would like to see come up in their Twitter feeds. By continuously engaging followers with easily consumable content, the company has been able to grow its following – just in the time since I spoke to Twitter at the beginning of September, @JoinTheFlock followers have grown by almost 5,000 users. I believe this has been one of the company’s most effective strategies to attract great candidates. The more people know about your job postings, the greater your chances are of finding the perfect new hire.

Jobvite:

Is this a strategy that all industries can incorporate in their recruiting efforts? How might other less socially or technically savvy industries need to tailor their approaches?

Erin:

Yes. Growing your following is definitely a strategy that all industries can incorporate, but the content you use to do so will differ. Twitter publishes Tweets from employees, as well as Tweets dealing with company events and industry conferences – things that potential hires would be interested in. Likewise, all companies have employees, and all industries have their own events. So use what you’ve got.

Jobvite:

What are some ways companies that don’t host or participate in many events can promote to showcase their culture to potential candidates via Twitter?

Erin:

I think Twitter’s most effective strategy is not necessarily that they Tweet about company events, but that they use employee Tweets to communicate what is happening in their offices. Encourage your employees to Tweet about great projects they’re working on, or why they love working for you. Then re-Tweet. Employees can communicate a company’s culture in a way that seems more honest and open than the corporate handle.

Jobvite:

What are some of Twitter’s strategies for finding passive candidates via Twitter? How can other organizations appeal most to these candidates in 140 characters or less?

Erin:

Twitter didn’t discuss this with me specifically, but in my experience, I’ve seen that Tweeting content that is industry specific and showcases the company as an innovative and fun place to work within that industry – whether they’re hiring for marketing, sales or software development positions – is a great way to intrigue candidates who may not be actively looking for a new position.

Jobvite:

Explain why you think having employees Tweet out open positions is such an important social recruiting strategy for Twitter.

Erin:

The key word in “social recruiting,” is of course, “social.” Referrals have always been one of the best sources for great new hires. Current employees most likely have friends and acquaintances that share their work ethic and interests, so having employees Tweet open positions to their own followers greatly increases the chances of finding quality candidates. Not to mention that because Twitter uses Jobvite to track candidate applications, there’s also the added possibility that current employees might receive a referral bonus for helping the company find the next great Twitter employee.

Jobvite:

What value are hiring managers seeing from recruiting socially versus more traditional methods such as job boards?

Erin:

Anitra Collins, one of the minds in charge of the @JoinTheFlock handle, noted that Twitter uses Twitter “to vet candidates for their style, their communicative prowess and their approach to the world.” Social media therefore allows hiring managers to look past a simple resume, to get a better feel for the candidate’s cultural fit with their company.

Additionally, social media allows hiring managers to communicate directly with candidates in a more informal manner. @JoinTheFlock will Tweet directly at candidates who appear qualified, pointing them to current listings and giving a personal touch to the recruiting process.


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