Monthly Archives: July 2011

Building Effective Recruiting Talent Communities

Lots of followers is not an effective way to build a talent community on social media.

The goal of any recruiting strategy should be to build a reliable, repeatable source of hires. Lots of people, simply means lots of people. The key is the quality of people the talent community attracts and whether they are qualified for the jobs available.

Job boards have a very, very, low ratio of hires to people reading their ads. Most social sites for employment have even lower ratios.

How you engage your talent community determines whether it will be effective or not.

The most effective recruiting talent communities are small, communities built around the culture of your company and the skills needed for the jobs you typically need to fill. A talent community should not be designed to fill every position, only those positions that need to be filled frequently.

There are more effective recruiting techniques to use for the ‘once in a while job vacancies.’

Building effective recruiting talent communities requires you, or someone in your company, to consistently spend time cultivating the desired talent community. That means keeping your talent community apprised of happenings in your company. What coming needs are likely to be. Opportunities and challenges. Etc.

Talent Community Rule of Thumb

Spend as much time communicating with your talent community as you spend communicating with your best friend. That takes time. Concentrate that time on the jobs most frequently vacant. Develop information to attract highly skilled people to those jobs.

Lots of jobs available in lots of different positions.
What do you do when you are faced with major hiring challenges over an extended period of time? Build smaller talent communities within your overall community. This may be by Department, brand, or geographical areas. The smaller the talent community, the easier it is to communicate and engage people. It’s much easier to talk about specifics than broad generalities. Create opportunities for people within your community to interact with each other.

Key to Engagement
Offer something to keep people coming back. It can be prizes, games, recognition. People participate in social communities to get something they want or need. Simply offering a job now and then doesn’t keep people coming back.

It isn’t complicated!
Building a recruiting talent community is not difficult.

1. Identify the jobs you need to recruit for. Can they be addressed with one talent community, or do you need sub-communities?

2 Identify the skills and management style that ideally mesh with your company.

3. Identify where on the Internet the people you want to attract hang out. Is it Ladders? LinkedIn? If on Twitter or Facebook, where on those sites? Other sources? Talk to your employees in the jobs you need and ask them where they spend their professional time on social networks.

4. Communicate at least weekly to your talent community and to each sub-community. Distribute press releases. Announce promotions. Tell people about business marketing successes. Send a link to an article to benefit their career (and expand their skills to make them more desirable to your company. Etc.

The communication step shouldn’t take more than 15 minutes per sub-community per week. Engage your best employees to help.

Looking for a New Career Opportunity?

Seek out social talent communities that match your skills and interests. Actively participate in them. The better prospective employers understand your talents, the more interested they become. Communicate your successes. Offer suggestions.

Branding-Nationally & Internationally

Demand for Talent has Gone Global.

Talent scarcity is worldwide. The world faces declining fertility rates. Education standards vary greatly. Last, worldwide there is an aging population.

Employers need strategies to retain employees as well as faster strategies to attract talent.

The solution to recruiting challenges includes collaborating with other companies, educational institutions, and even cutting across industries.

Business leaders and their employees need to encourage broader understanding and cooperation between cultures. It’s simply a fact of life to the success of any business, no matter how small.

Employees need to at least welcome change.

This recession has taught employers around the world how to do more with fewer employees. Remaining employees at least are open to change. The best actually embrace change. Unfortunately that has meant the disparity between the best talent and the rest has become much more pronounced—in their jobs and in their standards of living.

It’s important for all businesses to do a better job training, motivating, and coaching employees. Likewise, employees need to take more responsibility for their own careers, motivation, and the types of coaching they need and best respond to.

Your Company’s Growth

Smart companies and entrepreneurs spend time thinking how to attract and retain the employees that will contribute to their growth and profits. Growth is much more than increasing sales. It involves identifying additional products or services existing customers want. Identifying additional market niches. Finding pockets of business where your company can carve out a competitive advantage.

Tools You Can Use

More and more companies are using contract labor. Businesses have more short-term market opportunities and opportunities to provide a highly targeted set of skills or services. That also means business needs to look at more out-sourcing instead of doing everything ‘in-house.’

Self-education, through all the tools available on the Internet is a rapidly growing trend. What is your company doing to identify additional skills your employees need? Then helping them find Internet sources they can use to acquire the skills.

Employers need to work with local schools to acquaint the schools with the skills schools need to be teaching. That also means schools need to become much more flexible in what they teach. In the US that will be a tough transition given how entrenched the public education system is. Many feel this is a primary reason so much is being done with training through the Internet. That enables individuals to take responsibility for their own educations to assure they get the skills to enable them to thrive, instead of survive.

Improving Communication

While there will be increasing reliance on the Internet for educational opportunities there is also increased need for better communication skills when face-to-face. The Internet is still relatively new, and ‘texting’ is very new. All of us are still identifying when that’s the best way to communicate and when face-to-face, or actual voice communications are more effective. As we become more comfortable video texting communications will improve.

The reason for face-to-face communications is to enable the use of more senses, hearing, voice inflection, facial/body language, etc. Video communications can enhance communications. As the need for skills expands worldwide so does the need for all of us to acquire some foreign language skills, especially those of us responsible for recruiting employees for our organizations.

We don’t need to speak several foreign languages, but we need to know how to use the Internet to enable us to communicate easily with people who communicate in different languages.


Increasingly we live in a global world. That is unlikely to change. Step back and identify how your company can effectively benefit from globalization. What skills do you, and your employees need? Where are the business opportunities? What can you do differently?