Written by Greg Moran, CEO, Chequed.com
If you’re in recruitment or HR, social media is probably one of the biggest topics in your office today. The truth is, when used correctly, social media can be a valuable candidate screening tool.
Here are four tips to consider when using social media to screen.
1.) Don’t break the law. Many are hesitant about using social media to find information about a candidate. However, candidates knowingly and publicly place personal information on the web. This information can often tell you a lot about a candidate’s overall job fit. Unfortunately, online profiles can also provide you with information that is not legal to obtain or consider for the purposes of your hiring process. Information such as religion, sexual orientation, and health can be found unintentionally. Your treatment of that information is critical. Ignore it. Use only the job relevant information and don’t share the rest with anybody. Remember: the candidate shared it but you don’t have to.
2.) Explore new mediums. LinkedIn is arguably the largest recruitment and sourcing tool on Earth. While it should be an integral part of your hiring process, you should also be using other social media technologies as well. Consider Klout, Pinterest, Foursquare, GooglePlus, Facebook, and other networks when you are researching a candidate’s background. Consider how these tools may fit your strategy and give them a try.
3.) Don’t ignore the obvious. Social media is new, cool, and fun for many HR departments to explore. It is very easy to want to explore the latest, trendiest sites, but don’t ignore the oldest tool of them all: Google. Recently, at an area company, a new hire was harassing another employee. This information was discovered by simply Googling the candidate’s name, as well as the fact that he had served time for a previous rape conviction.
4.) Link selection to sourcing. Most recruiters know that references can become future job candidates. Use social media to find out more about a candidate’s references, validate reference authenticity, and network to build relationships. (Tip: Automated reference checking tools can make this process easier.)
Social media is a great selection tool when used ethically. Just remember that it may not always be predictive. However, it may give you some valuable information about a candidate’s fit to your company.
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