Using Big Data in Social Media Recruiting

By Cheryl Morgan

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Social media recruiting

The amount of user-generated data on social media networks is astounding, as is its rate of growth. Most of this data is unstructured, and without the proper tools (many of which have only been developed in the past few years), making sense of it all is nearly impossible. The information contained on social media platforms is full of valuable insights, and harnessing those insights effectively requires the use of big data technology.

Big data offers tools that can be used across industries to gather, structure, and analyse the type of data generated on social media (as well as countless other types of data). Social media recruiting is increasingly making use of big data to help companies find talent and identify the best job candidates for open positions. Big data is the technology of the future of recruiting, but it isn't the Hadoop framework running on Amazon Web Services that will get you your ideal job candidate. You also need people who know what to do with the insights big data produces.
 

Why Combine Big Data and Social Media Recruiting?

The combination of big data and social media for recruiting, put simply, works. Xerox, for example, used big data tools in recruiting and slashed attrition at its call centres (which are notorious for high turnover) by 20%. Social media recruiting is also extremely popular amongst professionals in Western Europe, with 64.4% of Western European job seekers distributing CVs online, 60.9% being contacted by a recruiter as a result, and 17.1% landing a job. In Eastern Europe, 13.4% of job seekers reported getting a job through social media, and the figure was 9.7% for those in the Asia-Pacific region.

 

How Does It Work?

There is no one specific formula for combining big data and social media recruiting to magically produce highly qualified job candidates, but there are some commonalities. Data mining often starts with accessing information through social media sites, combing sites like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter for details that indicate possible job candidates. Big data processes information gained this way along with data gathered from applications, resumes, and even scanned business cards. Promising candidates may be asked to complete tests and games designed to assess relevant skills, and this information is also fed into algorithms that sort information, recognise patterns, and narrow the candidate pool.

 

The Human Touch Is Still Necessary


 

The algorithms can't do it alone, however. No matter how effectively masses of data are processed and analysed, you still need actual people with experience in social media recruiting who know how to interpret the information algorithms produce. Human expertise is the third necessary factor in addition to big data and social media platforms in successful social media recruiting.

Big data tools are phenomenally powerful, but they can only achieve their full potential when the information they disgorge is put to use by people with specific expertise, regardless of industry. The promise of big data can be wasted when people rely solely on the algorithms to lead them to job candidates, without putting in the human effort required to make the most of it.
 

Conclusion

Big data gives recruiters the ability to put powerful technology to work analysing an exponentially larger pool of data than has ever been available before. Combined with social media recruiting expertise, big data allows social recruiting specialists to make more accurate, evidence-based selections more quickly, and this can confer a very real competitive advantage for hiring companies, particularly as competition for top talent heats up.

As a leader in social media recruiting, Social-Hire helps recruiting and HR professionals develop the right social media recruiting strategy for their needs. Despite the ubiquity of social media in people's professional lives today, many recruiting teams aren't sure how to best use social media in their recruiting strategy, and approaching it the wrong way can result in setbacks. Social-Hire, however, has the experience and expertise to help recruiters build social presence and put social media to work as an integral part of their recruiting strategies. If you would like to learn more about making social recruiting work, we invite you to attend our regular webinars on how to get results on social media.

 

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