Recruiting Tops List of Corporate Social Media Initiatives: SelectMinds Survey Finds 72% of US Firms Actively Engaged in Social Recruiting

69% Plan to Increase Social Media Budgets in 2012; ROI Measurement Remains a Challenge

NEW YORK–SelectMinds, a developer of social recruiting and community management solutions, today announced the findings of its annual ROI of Social Media in the Enterprise survey. The data shows that 86% of firms are currently using social media in their organizations, and 72% are actively engaged in social recruiting initiatives.

Developed to establish benchmarks for corporate use of in-house and external social networks, the SelectMinds survey asked 216 executives at US firms with 3,000 or more employees to share the details of their corporate social media initiatives. Topics covered include social media usage, management responsibilities and results measurement. Following are the key findings:

Recruiting Rules the Social Roost
Corporations are using social networks for many purposes, but the most frequently cited social media initiative among survey respondents was recruiting:

  • 72% of respondents reported that their companies were using social media for recruitment/talent acquisition, followed by branding-engagement & awareness (69%), recruitment branding (68%) marketing (63%), corporate communications/PR (57%) and communications with customers (52%).
  • Among HR professionals, 81% of those surveyed are using social networks to help them recruit candidates. LinkedIn and Facebook are the most frequently used sites: 79% mine LinkedIn for candidates, 65% have a company page on LinkedIn and 63% have a dedicated Facebook page for jobs/careers.
  • Though HR has emerged as a leader in social media adoption, management of corporate social media initiatives is fragmented. 33% of respondents said they had a dedicated social media team or person, while 44% of respondents said social media management was part of several peoples’ responsibilities.

Corporate Social Networks Gain Momentum with Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter
While the majority of corporate users surveyed are maintaining Facebook pages (86%), LinkedIn groups (82%) and Twitter accounts (71%) on behalf of their companies, in-house corporate social networks have also gained traction in most firms:

  • 63% of respondents reported their companies are using corporate social networks for current employees, 40% have developed them exclusively for recruiting and 33% have created alumni networks.
  • Corporate social networks are being used primarily for job listing/recruiting (62%), training and learning (53%), HR benefits/incentives (52%), event information (52%) and accessing news (52%).
  • 69% of organizations plan to increase their social media budgets and 85% say they are seeking actively or planning to invest in social media technology.

Measuring the Effectiveness of Social Media
When asked to rate the effectiveness of social media programs and weigh in on best approaches for measuring success, results were mixed:

  • 60% of respondents said corporate social media programs are most effective when used for communications, followed by brand awareness (57%), increasing the effectiveness of marketing (55%), brand monitoring (52%) and positive press (50%).
  • Among the most common metrics for evaluating the success of social media programs, 66% count hires from social networks, 65% count website visitors and 63% count Facebook fans. Very few measure in terms of reduced expenses or increased revenue (27% and 10% respectively).
  • Just 5% of respondents rated themselves as “very confident” that they are accurately measuring the ROI of their social media activities.

“Corporations are beyond the leap-of-faith stage with their social media programs: they have them up and running and they know they are producing results. They just can’t agree on how best to quantify them,” said Anne Berkowitch, CEO, SelectMinds. “The key now is to build the infrastructure necessary for firms to systematize their social media programs to produce real, measurable ROI. We look forward to being a big part of that evolution.”

Download the full report ROI of Social Media in the Enterprise.

Surveying was conducted in June 2011 and administered by Illuminas, a global research and consultancy practice that delivers strategic marketing intelligence across B2B and consumer markets worldwide.

About SelectMinds

SelectMinds develops social recruiting and community management solutions that help corporations source talent and new business through the online connections of their current and former employees. Delivered as SaaS, SelectMinds solutions include TalentVine™, an online referral recruiting tool integrated with social networks to increase referral candidates, and CommunityConnect, a corporate social networking solution that is tailored to employee and alumni populations. TalentVine and CommunityConnect can be deployed individually or together for the most powerful sourcing results. With SelectMinds’ technology, companies such as eBay, J.P Morgan, ADP, Credit Suisse, Lockheed Martin, IBM and Swiss Re, are able to source talent and new business while extending their world-class brands. SelectMinds is privately held with funding from Bessemer Venture Partners. www.selectminds.com

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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