Social Media and Recruiting: 5 Things to Look For in a Candidate

by Lamees Abourahma

social media and recruitingThis year, companies are expected to use social media for over 80% of job openings, utilizing the most popular channels of LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. The concept of social media and recruiting is no longer foreign or nonsensical, but an incredibly successful way to find great candidates and to receive more resumes for your job openings. When using social media in your recruiting process, here are five things you should look for in the profiles of potential candidates and employees:

  1. A Professional Image. The most common strike against potential candidates is the posting of inappropriate or provocative pictures online. Over 30 percent of hiring managers have NOT hired someone because of something on their profile, so looking for a professional image throughout the profile (not just the profile picture) is important. However, consider context with pictures. If the person is at a wedding holding a glass of wine, it doesn't necessarily mean the person gets drunk every weekend.
  2. Strong Communication Skills. Yes, social media is meant to be social, so it's likely potential candidates will be using more casual language that's reserved for friends and family. But, tweets and status updates could be revealing of how well the candidate communicates. If grammar is poor, or the person constantly uses profane language, it could be an indicator of how well they'll communicate on the job.
  3. The Content of Their Words. Social media and recruiting is as much about finding great candidates as about disqualifying bad ones. Over 50% of those who weren't given the job because of social media, lost it because of negative remarks about a former employer or about race, gender or religion. On the flip side, looking at the content of what's posted can also highlight aspects of the person's personality or creativity, and bring out assets that may otherwise have been overlooked.
  4. Qualifications. This one may be tricky, since not everyone posts their job history or every possible skill they possess. Yet, recruiters have been able to find out candidates lied about their qualifications by looking on their social media profiles. For example, if a candidate's resume said three years experience, but their profile only says they've been employed at a certain company for one, then it's possible the candidate lied.
  5. Protected Group Status. Although one-third of companies rejected a candidate because of something or another on social media, be careful when you do this. If the person has a protected group status, the person could file a complaint if he/she believes that gender, race, sexuality etc. was a factor in the decision. This will be harder to disprove if you looked at the person's social media profiles, where that information is often posted.

Overall, social media and recruiting are a match and aren't going away anytime soon, but must be used with some caution. Take a look at what you see carefully, without putting too much trouble into what you don't see (like asking for passwords). If done correctly and professionally, social media and recruiting can put great people into your pipeline.

No Items Found!

Become an RPOA Member
rpoa annual conference 2024

RPO Academy

Search and access free RPO ebooks, webinars, research reports and more

Browse Content
Blog Template Academy Image

RPO Leadership Forum

Browse and access RPO webinars by top industry leaders on-demand

Browse Webinars

iCoCo Marketplace

Find and connect with technology and service providers that are part of the iCoCo partner community.

Find Providers