Photo Credit: recuiting, social media
Increasingly, universities are using social media as a recruiting tool, both for undergraduate and graduate students. Using social media platforms such as Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube, they are trying to give potential applicants an inside look at daily life on campus, as well as highlight some of the features and benefits that help them stand out from the pack.
There’s a lot that any organization – not just educational institutions – can learn from these efforts. For example, if your small business is looking to recruit new talent, why not borrow a page from the playbook of universities and graduate schools? If your new non-profit organization is looking to attract more volunteers or donors, why not follow some of the tried-and-true best practices of universities across the nation?
#1: Engage across a variety of platforms
In order to reach as many people as possible, plan to engage applicants across a variety of platforms. Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter all make for very powerful ways to showcase – both visually and via text – what your organization is all about. With YouTube, for example, you can upload “day in the life” videos that show what life at your company or organization is like. With Twitter, you can provide relevant, timely information and establish your organization as a thought leader. And with Facebook, you have a way of humanizing and personalizing everyday life. Simply showing how you celebrated the birthday of a colleague in the office might be enough to convince someone that, “Yes, this is the type of workplace where I want to spend the next few years.”
#2: Highlight special interest groups within your organization
Recognizing that people like to hang out with people who have similar interests and backgrounds, be sure to highlight any special interest groups that you have within your company or organization. For example, if your company has a history of hiring armed services veterans, and has a special interest in attracting candidates from the military, take time to showcase any new initiatives you might have. And, given the emphasis toward diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) in the workplace, make it a priority to showcase your support for candidates from non-traditional backgrounds.
#3: Don’t be afraid to share your values
This might sound like a no-brainer, but too many organizations are afraid to share what they stand for. As a result, they tend to deal in platitudes (“we want to make the world a better place”) or in corporate jargon (“this is the perfect hybrid workplace for high-achieving individuals”). But, as universities and business schools around the nation are finding out, it’s really all about “fit.” You want to find people who will fit in and who will enjoy their time with you. Via social media, showcase the values and beliefs that make your organization special. Even better, let your employees speak directly to the camera and share these beliefs in their own words. That’s what makes social media platforms like YouTube and Instagram so powerful.
It almost goes without saying, but social media should be all about authenticity. So, when you are highlighting special interest groups within your organization, or when you are sharing your values, make sure that you are being authentic. Don’t talk about some topic because that’s what you think people want to hear these days. Using these best practices above, you’ll soon be recruiting the very best talent from a wide variety of sources. Even better, there will be a natural fit with your organization, enabling them to hit the ground running.