Recruiting Firm vs Social Media Recruiting

Not so long ago, companies reached out to agency recruiters and executive search firms when they needed top talent to fill key positions. They relied on these companies to source the candidate, manage the job and the offer, and handle post-placement tasks. With the rise of social media, the way in which companies began to recruit their talent changed. Some of this change has produced positive results in attracting employees, making it more open to all job seekers. However, social media recruiting doesn’t always produce the most efficient result.

First off, what exactly is “social media recruiting?” Social media recruitment is recruiting candidates by using social platforms as talent databases or for advertising jobs. According to a 2016 SHRM Survey, Using Social Media for Talent Acquisition, recruiting via social media is growing with 84% of organizations using it currently. LinkedIn is listed as the number one most effective site for social media recruiting. Since this study, other sites, such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube have continued to gain popularity too.

Many companies, including most Fortune 500’s, have transitioned their recruitment initiatives in-house, believing it’s more cost efficient to hire an army of recruiters whose main function is to use every tool at their fingertips to find the best candidates. Most scour LinkedIn, which doesn’t come cheap!

Then there’s the new potential “recruiting gold mine” of Facebook Jobs; It is simple to use, and you can connect your company’s Facebook page for candidates to learn more. Facebook makes it easy for companies to post their jobs too!

Let’s not forget about Twitter. With 328 million users per month, Twitter is a solid source for prospective candidates. Hashtags can increase the visibility of your posts while advanced searches can give you a peek at candidates’ profiles using job relevant criteria. Twitter can cost little to nothing while Facebook Jobs is fee based. Neither of these sites come close to the high cost of a recruiter “seat” on LinkedIn.

I think we would all agree that social media recruiting can be effective, and it is definitely here to stay. However, is there still a need for recruiting and executive search firms? Absolutely!

We are in one of the tightest labor markets since the years following World War II. This is a candidate-driven market; companies need to be able to find qualified employees quickly, efficiently and cost effectively.

Posting a job on social media may open up a vast database of resumes, but the vast majority of the candidates won’t be qualified. It is a time consuming & challenging process for the corporate talent acquisition team to filter through the large number of resumes that social media recruiting generates – only to find that these “potential candidates” won’t respond, are not qualified, or are simply uninterested. It takes a savvy recruiter to turn a “potential” into a “prospect” resulting in a “solid applicant”

The majority of candidates will be PASSIVE, and that’s where the challenge arises. Agency recruiters usually know when and how to approach a passive candidate while a corporate recruiter may lack this insight. Do not assume that everyone who posts their resume on a social media website or responds to a job listing is actively looking for a new job.

Agency recruiters network and seek out specialized talent; they know how to spark an interest in passive candidates that are already employed yet open to a change. These types of recruiters have the ability to sell your company.  

Make no mistake, this ability to sell the opportunity to a prospective candidate is critical, particularly in a tight labor market. An agency recruiter acts as a balance between the company and the candidate. They help the company secure the best candidate and ensure the position is accepted. This is hard to replicate when a talent acquisition team is sourcing their own candidates through a social media platform.

A recruiting and executive search firm can help you find your next best candidate. After all, a good employee is worth their weight in gold!