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Untapped Talent Pool: HR’s Social Media Blind Spot

Canadian companies are well attuned to changing technology and are social media savvy when it comes to talking to their consumers and clients, but there is a significant gap between how companies are using social media, and how they can reach potential candidates.

More than 90% of Canadian candidates are on social media, but just half of employers are using these networks to promote jobs – and often they’re not reaching the right audience.

If you want to build a sustainable, strategic approach to hiring you need to understand how to reach top candidates where they’re already spending their time. Employers need to ask themselves are they effectively using digital tools to engage with the right target audience?

The Hays Canada Where People Are report found that 91% of candidates are on LinkedIn, but just 50% of companies are promoting jobs on the professional network.

And it’s not just younger workers – the survey found that Gen X and Baby Boomers use social media at almost the same rates as Gen Y, although Gen Y were 21% less likely to use job boards in their hunt.

The Where People Are analysis found that just one-third of most employers’ social networks are possible candidates, and of those, 66% rated the quality of candidates as poor.

This means that less than 15% of the people your company is talking to on social media are potential quality candidates.

How can you use digital tools to find, engage, and attract the right candidates?

Separate your candidate message from your consumer message

Companies are trying to build their employer brand but are targeting their consumer audience. There is a temptation to be everything to all people, using all available tools in a blanket outreach approach that can lead to diminishing returns. A one-size-fits-all approach means that career opportunities are not reaching the right people.

Start by defining your Employer Value Proposition – why should people want to work for you? Why do your current employees choose to work for you? This should speak to people across seniority levels, and will help you determine who your candidate target audiences are, for today and future hiring needs.

Build your candidate network

Recruitment today requires many different digital tools to recruit a candidate, but with the pace of technology advancement many employers struggle to identify which digital tools will be most effective.

The first step is to determine what digital channels your target audiences are on. Create your own career-specific groups or feeds so you can focus on building a high quality network.

Create a content plan

Once you have your channels, the only way to tap into those passive candidates is to engage regularly with quality information, insight, and analysis. Your candidate pool wants to know that you are a top employer, who understands their occupation and can explain why your organization is right for them.

Developing a content plan that can be used to engage with your target audience on a daily basis, will nurture your audience and build trust, so when they are looking for a new opportunity or see a job ad, they are more likely to seek your company out.

For more insights from the Hays Where People Want guide or to request a copy, visit

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.



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