UK need to get up to speed with social recruiting strategy

You own a business. You need good people who will make your business successful. But hiring people is a costly process.

Not anymore. Social media networking might be lots of things, but it’s also an essential tool to find and connect to the people you need to take your company to the next level. Employees referral and search, while being time and money efficient is your goal.

Social recruiting is your tool to reach that goal. Since social recruiting is still at the beginning, we’re publishing the research findings conducted by a social recruiting software provider. As shown below, businesses are on the right track but there is still a lot to be done to improve businesses’ recruitment strategy.

Recruitment software provider Zartis conducted a research that shows that the UK are falling behind compared to the US when it comes to using the web and social media for what is now known as social recruiting.

LinkedIn is still the most popular social network among recruiters and companies looking to hire new staff.

One quarter of US companies directly advertise job vacancies on the popular site (25%) while only 14% of UK companies place job ads on LinkedIn.

Twitter usage for recruiting purposes is lower compared to leading social media network, LinkedIn. Only 9% of UK companies use the microblogging site to promote vacancies, whereas 23% of US companies are actively tweeting about job openings.

According to Zartis, these findings could be associated to the fact that more US companies use applicant tracking systems (ATS) which often offer an automatic posting feature to Twitter. Most employee referral programs also result in an increase in the use of Twitter for recruitment purposes.

Despite its 750m users, Facebook is the least-used network. Only one UK company out of those surveyed lists jobs on Facebook. The US number is also low, with four companies posting job openings on Facebook.

An encouraging finding 61% of UK companies are advertising jobs on their own website. However, only 11% are using an applicant tracking system, or anything other than email, to receive and manage job applications.

Looking at the US, a slightly higher amount of companies (68%) advertise new roles on their websites. Notably, their use of applicant tracking systems is more than double than UK usage at 23%.

Social recruiting is a sector with massive potential for growth, and the survey results suggests it’s only the beginning.

How was the research conducted?

Zartis used the Sunday Times FastTrack 100 list for UK companies, and the Red Herring top companies list for US companies. Zartis selected every second company on the list to get to 100, then visited every site and analysed the companies’ use of web and social media for recruitment.

I’d like to see social recruiting software like Zartis to be used more and more as they empower SMEs worldwide with much needed tools to save on recruitment fees while helping with finding great quality candidates. Zartis has also put together other resources such as an interesting ebook about “Five great online recruitment strategies” and a free Social media policy download on their site.

Find out more:

Social recruiting software (

Download the Social recruiting report for more information

WordPress jobs listing plugin to supercharge your recruitment (

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So, you think you’re winning the recruiting game?

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So, I’m here eating chicken wings and I’m thinking, what does a company need to do to compete in an extremely competitive job market? Anybody is talking about how there are no jobs, and sure enough companies are talking about how they cannot fill their technical/programming jobs fast enough or with the kind of people they’d like to get.

We’re one of those whinging companies. It took us about 3 months and some interviews, a lot of weird CV and cover letters and the same amount of rejections, before we found somebody who would be remotely normale and would fit in with the company culture and tick at least some of the boxes. So, we’re happy enough. Well, we were. But we wanted more.

So, we’re now hunting again, this time for a sales person and we decided to change something in our recruitment strategy.

We’ve made an efficient addition to it, being a WordPress user, we’ve come across this jobs listing plugin, which does most of the work for you. As any WP plugin, you simply go to the WP page, download and install it, and you’re basically good to go.

If you have a job to advertise then go for it and just wait that the applications start rolling in. You have a complete application tracking system there for you, completely free, courtesy of the guys at Zartis, who being WordPress user themselves, thought could be useful. Even if you’re a bigger companies with lots of openings, their PRO option, is 24€ a month making very affordable for any company. I’d recommend it as they offer support and the app itself is very slick and well designed and user friendly.

You should get this job listing plugin for WordPress because it is:

  • - FREE
  • - integrated with social media
  • - integrated with web and major job boards
  • - slick and fast applicant tracking system enabling you to timely respond to and manage applicants information
Ah, before I forget, they offer another little cool gadget, which I haven’t seen anywhere else, and it consists of a widget that sits on your website and it shows that “we’re hiring” and catches the attention of your site’s visitor right away.
From there, candidates can either apply traditionally with a CV or through their LinkedIn account.
I think that’s pretty impressive, especially as you don’t have to be a techie at all to install it!!
Well, find out more at the social recruiting software site or download the jobs manager plugin directly!
Don’t forget to let me know how you get on…and if you have any suggestions, they’re always much appreciated.
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Online reruitment: how is the CV changing with the rise of social media?

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In an increasingly global job market, making your CV standing out from the pile and catch the attention of a recruiter has become a strenuous task.

Fear nothing though, social media can help you.

After the classic paper CV, plenty of details about your life story and perhaps even a photo, the CV in “European format” came along. Long, too detailed, too standard. Boring. This was an attempt at a standardisation of the CV that didn’t really work. Thank God.
In today’s job hunt, the one thing that nobody wants is to be put in the same box as some body else. Or at least not as everybody else (it wouldn’t be good to be on your own either).

Thankfully, the web offers lots of opportunity to make your professional profile unique and “unforgettable” through a dashing presentation.

The Facebook CV

In June, Mashable published a nice article on “ingenious CV” and the story of Claudio Nader, 28 years old Italian, was told. He lived in the UK for a bit and wanted to go back to Italy to find a job. Seen the difficulties he had to face, he came up with a singular way to get noted in the communication world.
According to Mr Nader, the best venue to do this, is Facebook, the most clicked social network in the world. He set up an eye catching CV and made it accessible through his privacy settings. His Facebook CV has made to the 12 most beautiful CV in the world, after having created a lot of buzz around his initiative which demonstrated he has pretty good media planning skills. His adventure was reported on many papers and on his blog, and it led him to his current role as Social Media Assistant based in his hometown, Bologna (Italy).

This example, is only one of many cases where success is achieved through social connections on the web. This is the basic essence of social recruiting, a new emerging recruitment “tactic”, which leverages social media connections for finding talent and recruiting it.
Hiring managers are keen on using social recruiting as a survey indicated that online recruiting has grown by 15% compared to 2010.
It is why, a candidate should be careful about what’s said about him on the web. Web reputation is becoming pivotal for a successful job hunt campaign.
A survey conducted by Adecco, 123People and Digital Reputation found that in July 2010, 36% of recruiters used to perform candidates background check through social networks and the web in general.
Everyone can “Google you” at any time. So whatever is on the web, is accessible to the public, thus recruiters as well.
Careerbuilder, recommends that job seekers:

  • Remove pictures, content and links that can send the wrong message to potential employers.
  • Update social networking profiles regularly to highlight latest accomplishments.
  • Consider blocking comments to avoid questionable posts; avoid joining groups whose names could turn off potential employers.
  • Consider setting profile to private so only designated friends can view it.

It is therefore essential that you choose your online friends carefully and you exercise some “content curation” as well, as they will translate into your online image, which is projected out in the world.

The infographic CV
Apart from social media and social recruiting, there are other rising and notable trends in the job seeking scene.
Everyone is looking for a new way to show creativity and entrepreneurship and other skills in a cool and to the point way. I guess that’s how and why infographics CV are becoming more and more popular, especially among the design community.
The idea of an infographic CV was first born in the US, thanks to Chris Spurlock, a journalism student who ended being hired by the Huff Post, after his infographic CV was published on the newspaper and went viral.  The best thing about an infographic CV is that it’s clear and concise and colourful! For more examples of infographic CV check this site.
Using an infographic CV will surely make you stand out from the crowd, but it’s not as easy as writing a normal CV. If you’re not a graphic designer you could have some hard time learning dital imaging programs (eg Photoshop) and skills you need in order to make one. You could try to sign up for services that offer to make an infographic for you like Vizualize me  or CVgram which are by closed invitation only.
If you can’t get an invite for the beta, you could use more accessible and free apps like Wordle or Tagxedo, which create a text cloud. If you want to explore further, for graphics or diagrams you could try Gliffy, which offers free access as well.

Video CV
This is not all. Video is increasingly used by companies that want to go the extra mile to attract the best talent around. Companies in the technolgy sector are competing for the best people and having a video that can show your company values and culture can make the difference. Check out this career and jobs site for the game industry. It’s a good example of what business can do to win the best people.
For the job seeker, building a video cv shows that you’re proactive, creative, that you can think outside the box. All qualities that any company would gladly pay for. YouTube is the primary host of video CVs and I would suggest to have a look at this, if you haven’t already. This is an extreme example as it’s a website, including a video CV and more. This guy, Matthew Epstein, wants to work for Google and it seems he will go any lenght to get a job with the company

LinkedIn CV
Let’s not forget the basics here. Nothing fancy, but something essential. Make sure to build up your professional profile on LinkedIn and you might not know, the profile can even be exported into a CV with the choice of some pretty nifty layouts.

Be yourself

No matter what communication channel you chose for your CV, don’t forget to be honest and more than everything, be yourself. That’s always the best bet.

Any thoughts, drop them here!

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Gen Y and other generations explained

I was reading  up a bit on how social media background checks seem set to become the standard in the future.

The article talked about how Gen Y is more open than previous generations and that “honesty”, if exposed on social media, can hinder their chances of getting a job. Or even retaining their current one. This could prove to be true and also I was thinking, I don’t really know what Generation Y means exactly (or the other generations denomination for that matter). So, I did a bit of research on it and I’d like to share few bits with you, for your own reference.

Below a graph that explains the generations and each respective years brackets:

Generations explained

Also, there seem to be a lingering question about Y Gen Y is called Gen Y?

Well… why not answer the question with another few questions?

This is what I found out:

Y leave home when I can stay here with my mammy?
Y cook my own dinner when my mom can do it for me? 
Y buy any food when my parents still provide for me?

Y look for a job?  (well there aren’t much jobs? Are there?)

I think the above “description” applies well to the later years of Gen Y (maybe the later 1o years? ;-) ) but we can’t paint everyone with the same brush. The only thing I know (now I do!) is I am part of the earlier Generation Y and I don’t relate myself to the above description whereas I know a lot of people born in the later years of the generation who fit this description perfectly. However, it should be noted that this behaviour could partly be a result of a combination of factors such as omnipresent and overprotecting family and economic conditions. Gen Y is in a worse place than the Baby Boomers generation was, for lack of opportunities, earnings and all that comes attached to those things – independence, family, freedom.

Anyhow, the list above was just something funny, but not entirely applicable nor true – at least not for the whole generation!

Lastly, reproduced below the picture that was on the post I was reading about social media background check.

Well done to the artist who made it, the real reason it’s called Generation Y!

Courtesy of Flickr


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Social recruiting can help your job search

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Nowadays, it seems like pretty much everyone is using Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter to network – both for personal and professional reasons. Even if you’re only using these sites for personal networking, there’s a chance your employer -or prospective one- is checking out your social profiles.

With this in mind, are you ready for companies and recruiters to see your online presence?

As confirmed by the Social Recruiting Survey 2011 results, companies are increasingly using social recruiting to source candidates for employment (89% of American companies will recruit in social networks this year).

Social Recruiting Plans

However, companies use social recruiting also as a means to investigate applicants they are considering hiring. If you are aware of how companies are using social media to recruit, you can turn it to your advantage and position yourself  in the right place at the right time.

Most importantly, and this should go without saying, you should be conscious that inappropriate postings on networking sites could affect your chances of getting a job, or even cost you the job you already have. There have been cases recently where people actually lost their jobs for inappropriate remarks about co-workers or the workplace posted on social media (check out this article on Resume Bear for reference).

Therefore, just remember that every single tweet and Facebook post can be found on search engines and they can come back to haunt you. Always take responsibility for your own actions and remember to common sense at good use.

The don’ts of social media

  1. Do not say anything online that you wouldn’t say to someone in person (especially if the person is your boss).
  2. Be conscious that anybody can read what you write. It’s there, for everyone to see.
  3. Think before commenting as it might be a chance to embarrass yourself and fail your career.

The do’s of social media - to help with your job hunt

Social recruiting is a relatively new field and most companies are still experimenting with what works from a recruiting perspective, and what doesn’t. This means that there are no rules on how be found, but making the right connections with people in your industry and career field is always the right start.

However, don’t just connect with people randomly. Do some research, and identify people who you have something in common with – college, industry, experience, passions etc.

Build your network ahead of tough times

You never know when you need a hand. Proactively join Groups on LinkedIn and Facebook, engage and contribute to the discussion. Being good at networking, will certainly play at your advantage in the event you unexpectedly lose your job or decide it’s time to move on.

Bear in mind that the contacts you make online can only help with making a start and then communications should be transferred to person-to-person where possible.

Online connections might help you with getting a “foot in the door” at a company you’re interested in.

You won’t get your dream job overnight, but be aware that building your career network could be a key element in getting your next job.

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