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Cabot Jaffee

Dr. Jaffee (M.A., Ph.D.) is a recognized expert in the field of assessments, and has created effective HR Solutions used by millions of people. Read more

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How Recruiters View Candidate’s Social Media Presence

how recruiter view social media

How Recruiters View Candidate’s Social Media Presence 


The use of social media in hiring practices is increasing exponentially. Most companies encourage (or even require) candidates who register online to share their social media profiles. And when asked, many companies respond with, “Of course we use social media in our hiring practices.” Yet when pushed further – they quickly realize they are only touching the surface of what can be done with social media recruiting.

However, many candidates aren’t fully embracing using or combining their social media presence with searching and applying for new jobs.  

Software Advice, an online resource for HR & recruiting software buyers, interviewed recruiters to see what red flags they look for when reviewing a candidate’s social media profiles. An online survey was created to find out whether the red flags recruiters use to size up candidates matched with common social media practices among job seekers. A total of 1,542 responses were randomly collected within the United States. Some key findings included: 

  • Just 66% of respondents said that they have a social media presence. (Note: recruiters cite this as a red flag—they prefer all candidates to have a social media presence.)
  • A majority of social media users do not always make sure that their social media profiles match their resume.
  • Most social media users do not speak poorly of their current or previous employers.

Social media has given recruiters and small business owners a new way to vet potential new hires. However, some of the red flags used to rule out candidates—a lack of social media profile and mismatched profiles and resumes—might be eliminating quality candidates.

Researcher Commentary

“In a 2013 Recruiting Channels Survey, Software Advice found that social media recruiting is on the rise, and growing quickly. Not only did we find that social media is the number three source for candidates, but it was delivering the highest quality candidates–particularly Twitter.”

“However, while recruiters may find social media a great option for finding and vetting talent, we also surveyed job seekers in the U.S. and found that not all job seekers use social media. In fact, over a third of respondents reported they had no social media presence whatsoever.”

“In the future, we predict this will change. A recent survey revealed that 91 percent of employers use social networks to screen prospective employees. As such, it seems that having an active social media presence will become more important for job seekers in the coming years.” -- Software Advice HR Researcher, Erin Osterhaus

Look for subsequent blogs on how companies can take a more streamlined and standardized approach to incorporating social media into their hiring practices and processes. Also view our recruitment tools that leverage social media to use as referrals for job candidates.

How to Hire Quality Employees in Less Time


online recruitingHiring the right person for a job can save thousands of dollars in opportunity costs. When hiring new employees, there is a correct way to approach the process. Errors in hiring decisions consume lots of time and money and have a much bigger impact on a company’s bottom line than anyone ever considers.  Often times I hear that these poor decisions are “simply a cost of doing business.”  However, the better way to hire quality individuals requires a well-thought out plan, yet quick and easy to execute.  This in turn contributes to companies finding and hiring high quality candidates as well as saving time and shortening the hiring cycle.

Four-step approach to Shorten Hiring Cycle without Losing Quality Talent:

Step One: Streamline Your Hiring Process

An effective process wouldonline recruiting be to have the entire hiring cycle managed by a single point of contact (usually within your recruitment team). This person should be responsible for reviewing and qualifying the high potential candidates, looking for additional internal talent, and also managing the external search process. In most cases, this approach would cut the hiring cycle time at least in half. Simplifying the process by having a specific hiring manager will lower the risk of miscommunication and restrict missing out on quality candidates.

Step Two: Build Pipeline of Passive Candidates

Passive job seekers are an online recruitinginventory of possible candidates which can sometimes fill a sudden demand of open positions. As they are not active job seekers they will not be present on any conventional job boards.  A recruiter can build and maintain their talent pool by networking with passive candidates with diversified backgrounds and experiences.  Networking makes it easier to make your job postings viral which increases both reach and visibility.  An employee referral program can also be a method of recruiting passive candidates, because they reach out to their friends first. It is also a great tool for getting active candidates who often ask their friends for referrals, as well as for passive candidates who may be swayed by their friends. Make your employee referral program social so it’s easier for your employees to find and refer great candidates to you.

Step Three: Relationship Recruiting

Relationship recruiting is aboutonline recruiting building lasting relationships with prospects. And if you want to break through to the next level of candidate pipelining to create a true talent community, you must find a way to engage your members so they develop a sense of trust and willingness to connect with you. Build a community, drive conversation through meaningful content & provide a better candidate experience.

The use of video and interactivity also provides something candidates are looking for – an engaging experience where they have access to “good, relevant information” quickly and easily.  Structured video-based online simulations and interviews are quickly becoming a quality way to begin the relationship with a candidate earlier in the recruiting process.  Click here to see an example.


Step Four: Automate Your Sourcing Process

Present web-based applications online recruitingoffer enterprise-level social recruiting platforms with small business-sized price tags. Many platforms use filters to help scale down hundreds of online applications to a manageable short list on the basis of skills, experience level, organization & much more. Along with keyword-based filters, systems should also test applicants on technical, interpersonal skills and industry expertise. By using the tool, one can perform an in network search and dig into a candidate’s network to find similar candidates in his network. This ability to dig into a network of candidates not only increases reach but also increases probability to source quality talent and thereby saving a lot of time spent in the hiring cycle.

Hiring for quality is different than hiring for quantity and provides much more value than the latter. A well thought of plan executed properly can guarantee maximum quality in much lesser hiring time. To learn more about sourcing qualified candidates, visit our recruiting & hiring site.

Summer Hiring Season Is Here – Are You Ready?


JobEvery company with a seasonal hiring push has added strain on those involved with talent acquisition within the company.  As we approach summer, companies have the opportunity to drive a significant amount of money to their bottom line by being “better” with their seasonal hiring process. 

So what does being “better” mean?  This can mean a number of different things:

  • Meet staffing needs in a shorter period of time.
  • Delay a start date by one week (or
    more) and save significant money by timing new hires closer to when you
    need them.
  • Hire higher quality candidates.
  • Fill all positions in a more efficient manner than the traditional job fair, application, and interview process.
  • Free up recruiting personnel time to allow them to meet summer hiring needs.

Companies need to change their typical summer hiring paradigm of job fairs and interviews only.  They need to treat summer hires and the process of bringing them onboard no different than their regular hires, with one exception.  Most individuals looking for temporary (i.e., summer) employment will take the first job they can get.  So asking these candidates to jump through too many hoops (i.e., register for the ATS, fill out a lengthy application and assessment, take too long to make a decision, etc.) will cause them to go elsewhere.

Companies need a process that will allow them to become the “summer employer of choice” in a brief period of time, as well as a process that will increase the quantity and quality of candidates to choose from.  This can be accomplished through an online system that identifies qualified candidates and allows them to use their social media networks to drive additional candidates/friends that are “like minded.”  This in turn increases the number of qualified candidates in a shorter period of time.

Posting the job early can get companies on the fast track for seeking candidates, but most companies have to start making offers at the time they start the recruiting and interviewing process, even when they are not needed for the business just yet. They need to start people on payroll so they don’t lose the candidates to other companies that can offer immediate start dates which have a direct cost to the bottom line.  So in many cases payroll increases before it should.  Imagine a situation where “just in time hiring” could occur.  If you could assure yourself that you had a solid and consistent pipeline of qualified candidates that are a good fit for the job, then a significant amount of money could be saved by delaying the hiring date alone.

So if your company hires for the summer, consider what systems you have in place.  Click here to see an example of a system which accomplishes the above objectives and improves upon what most companies are doing today.

Top Five Things Companies Do that Turn Away Qualified Candidates

describe the image1. Ask them to register for your applicant tracking system (ATS) before they have learned enough to decide if they want to apply.

Before a candidate can apply for a job within most companies he/she must “create a profile.”  This means that they are expected to link their account to Facebook, LinkedIn, Google +, etc. and provide up to four screens of information before they can find out what the application process will even entail much less whether they may be qualified for the job.  The application process is very unfriendly to candidates that aren’t willing to spend too much time finding out about the possibilities (i.e., passive job seekers).  Not mentioning the invasive feeling that the candidate might experience, exposing their social networking at this early stage.   

2. Overload them with information, 90% of which is irrelevant to them.

Today companies put up a lot of video on their career pages which is commendable.  The problem is that 90% of the videos information is irrelevant to any particular candidate.  Companies should find out what motivates the candidate, what they are looking for in an organization, and then only present the information (and video) that is relevant to them.

3. Create a lengthy, text-based application and assessment process before they get to speak to someone.

Today applicants have certain expectations regarding how they want to use the Internet.  Individuals go to the Internet as a first step for almost everything they do or research.  When they get there they don’t want old, “boring” text-based information.  They want interaction and video.  They want to find out enough information about the company before they invest an hour (or longer) in the application process.  And then after 15 minutes answering text-based questions (non-interactive) those that are already working or not motivated to change jobs will drop out of the process. 

4. Create a process that only asks them for information without giving relevant information to them in return (and first).

The application form and assessment often take candidates between 30 and 90 minutes to complete.  All of this is done without giving candidates any information as to whether he/she will be a good fit along the way.  In other words, the application process should give information to the candidate based on his/her interests and qualifications during the application and assessment process versus waiting until the end.  This will allow candidates who will never get hired to disengage with the process before they have invested too much time, resulting in a much happier candidate (and often times a customer).

5. No follow-up information on the hiring process, plus no expectations set about next steps. In other words, just giving them a generic thank you message when they complete the application process, and then never getting back in touch with them again, may leave an ideal candidate feeling empty, confused, or avoid future application to the company.

Company’s applicant tracking systems send out a thank you note to all candidates.  However, do they automatically deal with candidates differently based on the qualifications and interests of the candidate?  A candidate that is a very good match for the position and company should not only get a different thank you email, but in addition should get additional emails, contact, real time messaging, etc.  A company needs a system to keep the highly qualified applicant engaged the entire time that the recruiting and hiring phase is occurring, not just in the beginning.

Each of these 5 points can be simply avoided without any additional resources spent by recruiters or the staffing team.  Systems exist which allow companies to provide an interactive, engaging, video-based experience for candidates which gather information on the candidate as well as give the candidate information along the way to better enable them to make the decision to complete the application process.  Click here to get more information on such a system.



How to Use Your Existing Applicant Pool to Drive More Candidates

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Companies are constantly looking for lead sources or exploring many marketing strategies to find good, quality applicants.  Today, everyone is placing ads on job boards, billboards, using email campaigns, the company career page, and much more.  Each of these strategies cost time and resources.  However, there is a better recruiting source using today’s social networking outlets, that makes looking for a job much easier for these qualified candidates.  It’s less work for you, and much less expensive than you think.

Your existing “pre-qualified” applicant pool is your best source of additional candidates, and you don’t have to do any additional work to gain access to them.  Just let your existing candidate pool do the work for you.

So here’s an example of how something described above might work.  In a typical application process all applicants go through an assessment.  At the end of the assessment those applicants that “pass” or master a certain aspect of the assessment can move on to the next step and earn a mastery “badge.”  This badge is an endorsement by the company that they have the skills necessary to do the job.  In turn each applicant can choose to automatically post their badge on their social media pages (i.e., Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.).   The badge asks for an endorsement from their friends and offers their network of friends the opportunity to also apply to your company.  Essentially, you gain information about your candidate’s mastery of skills, and at the same time get leads from that candidate through their social network of friends and colleagues.

Companies using this strategy have found:

  1. 45% of individuals that “earn” a badge through the assessment are choosing to post their badge publically on their social media sites and;
  2. 25% of those that post their badge, additional leads for the company have been generated 

And this happens without any additional resources or time spent by the company marketing to find candidates.

To see an example of the badges used within the real estate industry and/or to learn more about the process visit our product website.  And there are also numerous other examples used in other industries as well.  

Actively Recruit Candidates from the First Contact


actively recruiting

We’ve all heard it constantly, “The war for talent still exists.”  The reason we keep hearing it is because it’s true. 

So what are companies doing to win the war?  Not too much differently than what they’ve always done; put lots of video on their career page and hope individuals watch.  So, how do candidates determine which videos pertain to them, so they don’t spend too much time watching all of them?.  If they realize the company may be a good fit, then they will be willing to look for more information.

Candidates already spend too much time navigating the company’s Applicant Tracking System (ATS), career information, registering, searching, and filling out lengthy applications, before they know whether they even want the job.  The trick is figuring out early in the recruiting process how to keep them interested so they will continue with the more lengthy application process, to decrease your odds of losing them, and increase the number of quality candidates to choose from.

Think about it, if you knew a candidate was motivated by a high salary, corporate social responsibility, and career development - wouldn’t you tell them how your company could meet their needs?  If they were young and single and weren’t interested in benefits - would you spend much time telling them how great your benefits package was?

You will not achieve your goal of hiring quality candidates if your online process is the same for every candidate.  Candidates will drift away if they all receive the same videos; the same questions; and the same responses—nothing is unique to the unique candidate.

By using a new streamlined system of interviewing, that uses video and the internet to create a custom first interview and customized recruiting message for each candidate, you’ll find what motivates the candidate and also present your employee value proposition to them immediately.  You create an experience that causes those applicants that are a good fit to continue through the entire hiring process quickly, and you collect the information real time.  Ultimately, you make them want to work for you and thereby convert more prospects to hires.

For more information on this new interviewing technique check out our other blogs or click here for to see an example.


Video Interviewing Via the Internet – What Are the Possibilities?

video interview

There are numerous ways to conduct an Internet-based interview.  Many companies claim to be doing Internet interviewing and at some level they probably are.  There are three basic kinds of offerings in this arena, each with their own pros and cons.

  1. Remote Interviewing. This is simply using existing technology (i.e., Skype) to conduct an interview where the interviewer and interviewee are in different locations.  This obviously saves travel costs and time but is not much more efficient than the typical interview.  It still needs to be scheduled and both participants need to be available and present at the same time.  The amount of time the interview takes is just as long as if they were face-to-face.  The only major savings is travel time and costs.
  2. Pre-recorded Applicant’s Responses to Pre-defined Questions.  This can work by having an applicant sit at a computer and either read, listen to, or see a question read to them.  In turn, the computer’s webcam records the verbal, open-ended response to the question.  In this case the company recruiter simply watches and rates each interview question.  In this way time is only saved by those who are “failing” the interview early in the questions.  In other words, if an interviewee does poorly on the first 2-3 questions then the recruiter can end the interview by simply not watching any more questions, and therefore save themselves some time.  If the interview was live it would be harder to cut the interview short.  In this case all applicants get the same questions and hear the same information regardless of their interests.  In other words, there is no active recruiting other than the same canned information that is presented to all candidates.  There are other potential problems with candidates being able to gain access to web cams or deal with troubleshooting issues when the candidate doesn’t know how to operate the equipment properly.  In these cases alternative interviews still have to be arranged.
  3. Blend of Remote Interview and Recorded Responses. This involves a blend of #1 and #2 and provides the benefits of each without some of the pitfalls.  In this case companies create a script of pre-recorded interview questions and responses to the questions that are video-delivered to the candidate via the Internet.  Candidates are then able to answer using their keyboard, audio, or video, and based on their answers the “System” automatically branches to the most relevant information for that particular candidate, as well as the most appropriate next question.  In this way candidates hear the employee value proposition that’s most relevant to them from the beginning of the recruiting process.  All of this is done using a video interview format so the candidate is engaged in an interactive experience.  The questions also allow the company to do automatic pre-screening based on certain questions.  So the company does not spend time with candidates that do not meet minimum requirements, are not interested in the job, and/or do not have the right experience and background. 

For more information on this new interviewing technique, check out our other blogs or click here to watch an example.

New Thoughts on Interviewing Techniques - Differential Interviewing

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Companies often have a very structured and consistent process when it comes to hiring; typically using the exact same interview questions for everyone.  There are better options.

In fact, from our research, we have found most companies do not differentiate between their high and low potential candidates when it comes to the process they use to make decisions.  Many companies spend too much time with low probability candidates and not enough time actively recruiting their higher probability candidates.

Obviously all candidates can’t be processed through a lengthy interview, or if they are that company is spending way too much time and resources on their process. Adding in pre-screeners initially will determine who has the highest probability of success and thereby your efforts can be more heavily focused on those individuals. And we have also found in our research it is essential to properly communicate your employee value proposition early in the process, so each prospect understands what your organization offers him/her.

New technology systems are out there to allow for this to happen quite easily.  Imagine a pre-defined structured interview that is delivered using video via the internet.  Candidates answer pre-defined questions and based on their answers are presented only information most relevant to them.  Don’t waste the candidates time selling them on health benefits if that’s not of interest to them.  Likewise for the individual interested in career development in an organization - make sure they get the information on your company’s career development differentiators.  Again, all this can be done in an automated fashion.  Not only does this system allow you to pre-screen and prioritize who you should speak to in much greater detail, it does an excellent job of “recruiting” the candidates that you are most interested in by showing them your value proposition very early in the recruiting process.

Click to see a brief demonstration of what I’m describing.

Are You Losing Quality Applicants?

online recruiting

Companies want to choose who to hire.  The same holds true for job candidates. They too are making a choice – the choice of which company they want to work for.  If companies take that for granted they will continue to lose quality applicants during their hiring process.

Companies are spending billions of dollars advertising jobs and trying to attract job candidates to apply to their job openings.  Too many qualified candidates never make it through most companies’ application process because they are too long and boring.  Career sites today are largely text-based, difficult to navigate, and ask too many questions.  And this happens all before the candidate has enough information to find out if they even want to work for the organization. It has become difficult for candidates to find relevant information about the company and positions during their decision making process.

Long online application processes create barriers for candidates that result in a lot of practical problems for recruiters, such as spending way too much time with low probability candidates, and not enough time with the best qualified.  Plus, the lack of interactivity and engagement within the company’s career pages turn away the passive job seeker – potentially blocking them from any more visits to your site.

Ultimately these factors reduce the quality of hires, which is costing companies millions each year by hiring the wrong people. 

Companies need a recruiting system to both attract and pre-screen talent.  They need a system that sources more candidates and recruits more efficiently. Each applicant should have their own unique experience that is engaging and most relevant to them.  Companies need to improve how they connect with passive job candidates and provide a way to identify high potential candidates early in the process, so they are expedited through their recruiting process.  Moreover, GenWeb candidates expect an interesting and unique exchange while learning about the organization.  And each candidate should be provided a specific message where they stand in the application process.

By improving your recruiting process with functionality described in this blog you make sure the candidates you want are getting through your process.  This means you can reduce wasted time and resources on job prospects that will never be right for your company and focus your attention on the right candidates. In fact, you can increase your applicant pool by greater than 30%, cut your recruiting time by 40%, reduce turnover by 30%, and generate a significant ROI.

To learn more about how to engage the passive job seeker and provide each candidate a unique experience, click below to view our video on AccuRecruiter.

View Video

Your Candidates are Your Customers


candidateHopefully you’ve realized that your job candidates are also your customers (existing and potential).  If your customers have a bad experience - what do you think happens?  And how do you think they’ll feel about your company?  Do you think you have a high probability of keeping them as a customer?  Probably Not!  And that ultimately will hurt your talent acquisition process.

 5 Bad Things You Shouldn’t Do To Your Job Applicants:

  1. Ask them to spend more than 10 minutes before they understand what your company and the job has to offer them.
  2. Spend too much time registering for and filling out a long, text-based application.
  3. Leave them in limbo at the end of each part of the hiring process.  In other words give them very specific information at the end of each step as to what they can expect and what their chances are of getting the job.
  4. Don’t treat all job candidates the same.  Each candidate has a different perspective on what they want to know about the company and the job before committing too much time to the hiring process. 
  5. Don’t ask job candidates to complete a boring process and application that you wouldn’t be happy to complete yourself.

7 Good Things To Do For Your Job Applicants:

  1. Create an interactive experience where they get information based on their answers to questions on the application.
  2. Use video so they feel engaged with the entire process.
  3. Create a process that lets you spend more time with your high potential applicants and less time with your low potential applicants.
  4. For those applicants that are not qualified let them experience a very short, interactive, and friendly process so they are not upset at spending too much time and the ultimate result.
  5. Make sure your application experience treats them in their best interest versus the company’s best interest.
  6. Make the online experience more similar to what people are used to now (i.e., informative and engaging).
  7. Make the process mobile/tablet friendly.

Today’s job candidate expectations have risen.  Candidates are smarter, more technology savvy, informed and share their experiences with everyone.  More web sites have been created to allow employees and job prospects to share their feelings, experiences, and thoughts on each company’s application process.  Make sure what’s being shared out there on the web about your talent acquisition process is positive.  For more information on this topic feel free to download our whitepaper Which is More Important – Candidate or Recruiter.

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