13 Ways HR Can Leverage Social Media (Part 1)

Last week, I had the privilege of speaking to a 400-level social media class back at my alma mater. It was so much fun interacting with this class that—in my next career—I’d love to be a college professor.

We spent an hour talking about 13 ways that HR can strategically and tactically leverage social media. In part one, we’ll focus on seven out of the 13 ways.

OK class … let’s get started!


1. Employment Branding: Social media has proven to be a low cost and effective way to share a company’s stories. YouTube is my preferred platform for elevating the employment brand, though I’m starting to see the value in Pinterest as well.

Homework: Check out the GEICO Careers channel on YouTube for a library of employee videos, and then head over to Pinterest to view boards and pins from Sodexo and AstraZeneca.

2. Job Visibility: For increasing awareness of current job openings, consider Twitter. My company has been using Twitter for a few years and we receive thousands (and thousands) of job views each month.

Homework: See what others are doing on Twitter. Here’s a link to 39 employers who are using Twitter.

3. Event Announcements: Recruiting teams host and attend a lot of events. Social is a great way to let people know where they can meet up with you.

Homework: Visit the VMware university relations page; they even link to this event page from their career site, which is a low-cost and creative way to add events to your site.


4. Brand Ambassadors: Leveraging employee networks to share information is a great way to create some buzz and WOM marketing.

Homework: Consider the ways that you can tap into these networks to support your HR goals and objectives.

5. Ratings & Reviews: What is being said about your organization on Glassdoor? Are there unanswered questions posted via the Indeed forums? People are having conversations about your company. Are you a part of them?

Homework: Claim your employer pages on Glassdoor and Indeed, and begin gathering content and images to share.

6. Candidate Experience: In my experience, I’ve seen first-hand how Facebook serves as a platform for getting answers to questions. When job seekers cannot reach someone via phone or email, they turn to Facebook. Is your team prepared help candidates via social? How quickly can you provide answers?

Homework: Read more on how social media can help improve the candidate experience.

7. Build Communities: Whether it’s fans, followers or subscribers, each social platform exists with the intent to connect people. When someone opt-ins to consume your content, it’s important to put forth the effort and resources to engage your established communities.

Homework: Join the GE Careers group to see an active example of a company building a large, niche community on LinkedIn.

Often times the most difficult aspects of utilizing social media are getting the initial approval and finding enough time in the day! Once you’re there—building your social footprint—the opportunities seem almost limitless.

Please check back next Monday for six more ways that HR can leverage social media.

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Shannon Smedstad

Shannon Smedstad has nearly 20 years of recruitment, employer branding, and communications experience. Currently, she serves as the Principal Employer Brand Strategist at exaqueo. Previously, she held employer branding and recruiting leadership roles at CEB and GEICO. She’s a work at home mom raising two awesome girls who also enjoys reading, running, leading a Girl Scout troop, and her morning coffee. You can connect with Shannon on LinkedIn and Twitter.

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