These Social Media Moves Can Teach Us Lessons In Public Sector Recruitment

James Fell is Online Business Editor at Aceville Publications, overseeing digital projects for What Franchise and Global Franchise. He’s passionate about writing about business and the future of franchising.

No company, whether in the public or private sector, can afford to neglect social media. There are almost three billion of us registered across social media platforms, according to data giants Statista, which means a lot of potential targets.

Megabrands like Apple have followers that run in the tens of millions, and they are able to use these tools to take their product launches to the next level. But social media doesn’t just have to be about promoting products. What if it was also a great way to find new talent?

We know that 94% of recruiters use social media during the hiring process, but the crucial question is, do they all know what they’re doing?

As unlikely as it may seem, fast-food brands like McDonald’s have a lot to teach us. Curious to know how recruiters could learn from such social media campaigns? Keep on reading to learn how to use this powerful tool to boost your recruitment drives.

Make sure you tailor your post to who you’re trying to target.


  1. Don’t Be Afraid of a Joke or Two

Ask yourself, are you more likely to share a post that contains humor or one that’s bland, boring and (to continue the food theme) tasteless? We love to laugh and the big brands know that. Burger King is one of the biggest fast food chains on the planet, and it knows when to crack the perfectly-timed joke. A bit of humor in your hiring process could bring your role to the attention of more people. Why not choose a funny alternative title alongside the job listing? Adding some tongue-in-cheek humor to your job description could also work — if you’re looking for inspiration, check out this list of the funniest job ads. The funnier your job post, the more shareable it is, which means you can increase your engagement and reach more potential hires.

  1. Be Quick to Respond

You may be posting job advert links on Twitter or Facebook, but do you have conversations on there? If someone has a question about a position, it’s best to get back to them via social media, which is instant, than to wait for an email. By responding online, other candidates will also see that you’re responsive and having conversations, so if they have any queries, they’ll be more likely to get in touch. McDonald’s has thousands of franchises and stores around the world, but it still manages to respond to its customers right away, even when they have a complaint. Engagement is very important, as not only can applicants get the information they need, but you can also get useful feedback about your recruitment process.

  1. Use Images and Video to Catch People’s Attention

As humans, we naturally respond well to visual stimuli. Social media is very image-driven, and we’re not just talking about Instagram. Facebook and Twitter thrive on images, and there’s a reason why. If we look at Twitter, tweets with an image or video get a staggering 150% more retweets than those without. That’s a huge boost, and evidence enough for implementing this strategy in your recruitment campaign. If you post an image, video or even a relevant GIF with your job listing, you could benefit from increased exposure for your role, giving you a better chance of finding the perfect person for the position.

  1. Everyone Is Different — Don’t Forget to Target

You won’t be recruiting for the same role constantly, so why should your strategy for promoting vacancies remain the same? Different roles require different qualities and skills in a candidate, and your social media hiring approach should reflect that.

Brands like Domino’s have franchises all over the world, and it knows how to tailor its social media promotions to target different markets. In the US, the pizza-making giant took note of typical college schedules and joked that pizza deserved a spot on its study checklist (in all likelihood, this probably wasn’t really a joke). This tweet was directly targeted to its US audience because the brand knew it just wouldn’t have the same effect if it was posted across all of its regional accounts.

You should adopt this same approach when hiring. When recruiting for a high-level government position, you will be after different skills and qualifications than when you’re looking for someone at entry level, for example. Make sure you tailor your post to who you’re trying to target.

It can take a long time to find the people you are looking for. If you are able to expertly use social media with a good mix of humor and detail, while staying responsive at all times, finding the right candidate may take less time than you think.

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