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Do your target candidates know who you are?

Not every hiring manager or HR leader can work for a high profile company but some high potential candidates are looking for that element of name recognition when job seeking. How can you make sure your potential employees know your company – and want to work for you?

Social media can be a great leveler, and used effectively it is a recruitment tool that companies of any size and profile can use. However, few employers are using it to its fullest potential.

Nearly 100 per cent of Canadian professionals are on at least one social media network and more than half use them as tools to hunt for employment. As the hiring market gets tougher, employers need to stand out from the crowd, but less than a quarter are using social media to find talent.

Who are you connected with?

According to the Hays Canada Where People Are report, employers tend to favour generic online job boards, post-secondary career sites and traditional online ads, while candidates gravitate to social media such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. And when businesses do use social media to recruit, they’re often talking to the wrong people.

That’s because they’re missing a crucial step in building those networks. Most are talking to their clients and consumers, not potential candidates, and of the candidates that are in their network few are high quality with sought-after skills and experience. According to our research, only about 10 per cent of the average company network is made up of good quality candidates.

This is partly due to the fact that most companies are selling their products and services on social media, rather than positioning themselves as a top employer. That means that when you then try to post jobs on the channel that message is lost in the noise because most of your network are consumers not candidates.

How can you raise your profile?

Create a content plan that engages with your top candidates with information that is interesting and relevant to them. This can include sharing external content such as news stories, or internally-produced content like blogs or reports. Sharing non-job-related content now, and building interest and engagement with potential employees means that when you do have a job to post, they already know who you are, and know that it will be relevant to you.

Sell your company culture and build awareness of your employer value proposition as well with posts about internal incentives or programs, team events or celebrations, and other activities that contribute to making your company a great place to work.

The goal of this is to build and nurture a group of engaged professionals who will come to know and trust your brand so when you share job postings they are more likely to apply and accept an offer. Putting the groundwork in early is key to getting the results you’re looking for.

Hays Canada division manager Rachel Finan has more than 14 years of experience working in HR recruitment, She excels in making the right match and brings expert insight into market trends, employer needs, and candidate requirements.


Target on My Back

Blogger Note:  This particular blog is not very HRish, but is appropriate to its posting on Canada Day.  Enjoy.  We’ll be back with more serious topics next week.

Last weekend, John and I went to Niagara Falls.  As Americans in Canada, every once in a while we have to take care of business south of the border. In this case, tax filings were due and there was a postal strike going on in Canada so we decided to take a drive to ensure that the filings made it to their destination on time.

It has been some time since our last jaunt down to New York.  We used to do that trip a lot.  Every few months I’d get that hanker for something you can only buy in an American store, and off we would go.  This year, I had the urge to go because we aren’t planning to make our annual trip to Wisconsin, so I needed a substitute shopping date to stock up.

It is crazy the stupid things we travel 60 miles and cross a customs border to go to buy.  Despite the fact that I’m telling the world what I did buy on this trip, I’m not proud of it.  You see, Canadians eat fresh food, and Americans eat, well, I’m not even sure if the Canada Food Inspection Agency would characterize these things as actual food products.  We bought:

  • Tombstone Pepperoni Pizza
  • Tostinos Pizza Rolls
  • Birds Eye Green Beans and Spaetzle
  • Birds Eye New England vegetables
  • Western salad dressing
  • Nutter Butter Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies
  • Jif Extra Crunchy Peanut Butter
  • La Choy Chow Mein Noodles (in the can)
  • Boxes of Jiffy Corn Bread
  • Gold Medal Flour
  • Merkt’s Swiss Almond cheese
  • Slim Jims
  • Land-o-Lakes Butter
  • 100 Grand candy bars
  • Nestle Toll House Chocolate Chips
  • Chocolate Cheerios
  • Stewart’s Cream Soda

It was recently announced that Canada was finally going to get Target stores.  I should feel like I have died and gone to heaven, but strangely, I feel a little sad about this.  For me, it will be an end of another era. Canada has come out of the dark ages.

I remember quite vividly the first few years after we moved to Canada.  I discovered that Canada had something quite novel, and that is that it has public holidays where nearly everything shuts down. While all the public holidays combined aren’t on the same scale as American Thanksgiving, there were still a lot of them.  At that time too, there were Sunday Shopping laws here in Ontario, so you had to do all your errands on Saturday, or starve, or go shopping off to Buffalo.

And that’s what we did; we went shopping off to Buffalo.  In other weeks, we went to Chinatown and Queens Quay and Fort York and Kensington and other tourist areas where shopping was possible.  Most of the time, I enjoyed our excursions.  We bought fresh fruits from exotic places, and bought a wild assortment of sundry items from Chinese grocery stores. It was so unique, so culturally different from my American home, and it helped me to appreciate Canada.

The culture of commerce came later and by the late 1990s I was back to Sunday grocery shopping locally, taking Walmart excursions now and then, and a realizing that Canada was becoming very much like its southern neighbour-except for the fact that it didn’t have a Target.

Now that Target is coming, I really have to wonder whether living here will feel any different from living in the U.S.

Tombstone Pizza anyone?