Target Your Recruiting Efforts with Facebook’s New Features

Disadvantages to Hiring and Recruiting on Facebook

While Facebook is the number one social network in the world, it has two distinct disadvantages when it comes to using it as a tool for recruiting and hiring from.

  • It’s Not Easy to Search.  Unless you are a master sourcer or use Boolean search, Facebook is not easy to search, scan, or find job seekers.  This is very different than LinkedIn, which makes it bread and butter offering recruiter’s paid access to easily search and find qualified candidates as well as a passive or active job seekers.
  • Messages or Posts Can’t Be Targeted.  As a job seeker, I’m typically experienced in a certain industry, trade, or skill.  While I may be actively searching for work, Facebook does not offer a way to target messages to that particular user or group of job seekers.  I’d love for active job seekers to “opt-in” via Facebook to receive job postings either by an individual company or Facebook Fan Page or by radius for an entire metropolitan area when a posting fits specific criteria.  Many corporate fan pages that provide a Facebook job listings tab offer candidates the option to receive message either by email or text.

Personally, I think Facebook is missing out on a potentially financial lucrative job seeker notification system, but then again not every social network strives to be LinkedIn. Thankfully, they have recently presented an interesting solution to help Facebook Fan Page’s target specific groups and possibly job seekers.

New Facebook Fan Page Features for Recruitment

Facebook Fan Pages with more than 5,000 likes and above are now able to target specific fans by options including age, gender, relationship status, location, and education.  While page post targeting applies only to news feed distribution, this is a step in the right direction as employers are looking for way to reach a specific user audience and rise above the noise increasing candidate engagement and further strengthening the employer brand and job seeker relationship.  Did I mention this new feature is offered at no cost to you?  It is a separate feature from Facebook’s paid option, promote post.

There are a number of ways I see recruiters and hiring managers taking advantage of this new feature:

  • Promoting Specific Job Postings & Career Fairs by Location.  This is a biggie.  I can target my posts to a certain geographic location keeping unnecessary updates out of other fan’s feed.
  • Education Specific Targeting.  Maybe I’m struggling filling roles in healthcare or for a position that requires a unique and very specific degree program or background.  If this job seeker is currently a fan, I can point my message directly to their news feed.
  • Targeting Diverse Employment Groups.  If you are an affirmative action employer, you can focus some of your Facebook recruiting efforts directly to these job seekers by age and gender.  While this presents an opportunity to focus your messaging, I also see the potential liability as employers can target their recruiting efforts and potentially discriminating against a protected employment class.

Social Media and Hiring Practices Refined

This new feature began being tested in early August and is still only limited to a number of fan pages. I think it is a fantastic tool to add to your company’s social media and recruitment strategies and practices.  Because this option is only available to pages with 5,000 fans and above, look for companies to even more aggressively promote their pages in order to receive this added benefit.

This article was originally posted on Glassdoor where I’m a regular contributor.  Check it out.  

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Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell (@jmillermerrell) is a workplace change agent, author and consultant focused on human resources and talent acquisition living in Austin, TX. Recognized by Forbes as a top 50 social media influencer and is a global speaker. She’s the founder of Workology, a workplace HR resource and host of the Workology Podcast.

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  1. AvatarRob Kelly says

    Good piece. I believe Facebook has massive potential in the recruiting world. A few reasons why:

    1) Social Recruiting Is Partially Built In — Candidates can be able to see their hiring manager and team (assuming the hiring team is engaged about a job opp) — this is vital for A-Player job candidates.

    2) Recruiting Through Targeting — Being able to target your fans about jobs is huge! Your fans are likely already passionate about your brand and thus if you can reach the right ones (by location, education and ideally skill set), you could attract higher-quality applications (whether it’s your brand’s fans or their friends on Facebook). And if FB allows you to send the equivalent of an email campaign to targeted candidates for free, that’s going to be very compelling for social recruiters.

    3) Video & Pictures Are More Seamless — As those of us who believe in “visual recruiting” can attest to, Facebook’s ability to incorporate pics and vids will bring huge transparency to job opportunities. Who knows, pics and videos may become ubiquitous on Facebook’s job postings.

    Of course, I’m biased — I’m the co-founder of Ongig.com.

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