Why Startups should resort to Social Recruiting

6th Feb 2012
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Every successful entrepreneur will tell you that hiring the right people during the initial stages of a startup’s lifecycle can be the difference between success and failure. “Ideas and business models will inevitably change and evolve in a company’s early lifecycle. But the right people will always create (and recreate) the right business idea,” says Valerie R. Wagoner, Founder & CEO, ZipDial.


Most startups are on a tight budget, so a HR consultancy firm is out of the question!

Posting an opening on a job search site is the most common practice, but the process of selecting the right person uses up a lot of time and resources.

So how can a startup ensure that they have the right person without burning a hole in their pocket?

Social recruiting is the answer!

A Ma Foi Randstad Workmonitor survey revealed some interesting facts about the Indian workforce’s social networking habits:

  • 84% Indian employees use social networks to learn about an organizations culture.
  • 78% use social networks to keep a track of developments in a company before an interview.
  • 75% are deterred from joining a company based on negative reviews on social networks.


The number of people on social networks is currently large enough to constitute a credible pool of possible recruitments. Right now only 2% of all hiring are done through social networking sites. It is expected to grow to 20% of all hiring in the near future.

A social network like LinkedIn or Facebook allows a startup to understand if the person can adapt to the work culture and ethos of the company. Also, it is possible to check out the various assignments that the person has worked on. This basically turns into a digital resume and the start of the pre-screening or filtering process. For the person being hired, he/she can keep track of current projects the startup is working on and understand if they fit in.

Jobvite Social Recruiting Survey 2011 revealed:

  • LinkedIn is the most preferred social recruitment medium with 87% companies depending on it.
  • Facebook second at 55% and Twitter third at 47%.


If we look at the Indian social recruitment space, Monster.com’s social recruitment app BeKnown, which has been designed for Facebook, is targeting to capture this space. Another initiative by Monster.com, called Monster College, works as an integrated placement platform. So colleges, students and companies can connect with each other. This can be the perfect tool for a startup to hire interns or even full-time employees.

Tips for startups to become preferred employers

Make use of your Facebook page or Twitter account to connect with your audience. Post interesting developments happening at your startup, on these platforms. Be part of LinkedIn groups and engage with possible candidates. It lets a possible employee/team member to be familiar with what the startup stands for. It could also get someone interested to apply.

It is quite clear that ‘the team’ is any startup’s biggest asset. The fact that we spend a significant part of our time online on social networks (for both work and leisure) is also established. Social hiring takes both these realities into consideration and functions as the perfect recruitment process.

As Valerie says, “Given the impact that every team member has on the organization, it is important to discuss ways to ensure that the people really are a strong asset rather than a risky investment.”

We could not agree more.

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