Human Resources Blog - Spark Hire

Link In to Great Candidates Like LinkedIn

Have you noticed all your connections buzzing? If you’re wondering why everyone you know is sharing something about social media this week, the answer is obvious. That’s because the last week in September is also Social Media Week. With the movers and shakers of the social media universe getting together to talk about the future of connecting and sharing, it seemed like a good time to look at how social media giants find the best employees to keep innovating their services.

On Wednesday we took a look at how Facebook uses its position as the premiere social network to find great employees. Today we’ll be looking at social media’s professional older sibling: LinkedIn.

While you might use Facebook to “like” your favorite movie or Twitter to tweet to your favorite comedian, LinkedIn is a more serious, or professional, social network. That’s because LinkedIn is focused entirely on the world of professional networking. Over 175 million members use LinkedIn to connect with coworkers and employers, and to list their professional experience for the world to see.

Here’s how to hire like LinkedIn to find great employees to keep moving your company forward:

Put Current Employees on Display
Perhaps the best advertisement for your company is your current employees. As a company that is all about the “links” to coworkers, friends and employers, LinkedIn knows the value of putting a human face on the company. That’s why when you click over to theircareer page you’re immediately greeted with a list of current employees and how many links they are away from the person looking at the page. This allows candidates to see how they’re connected to people already working for LinkedIn.

Using your current employees as brand ambassadors is a smart move. It shows your workers you care enough about your company to endorse it to other talented candidates. Plus, it puts a human face on your company. Your company isn’t a sum total of the products you sell, the services you provide, or even your awesome benefits. Your company is really the great people you have working and innovating. Let talented candidates see this side of your organization as well.

Don’t Forget To Show Off Your Jobs
LinkedIn’s career page has plenty of information about what life is like at the company. But it also has the open positions within the company positioned front and center so interested job seekers can easily find a great opportunity.

While it’s great to show off what your company is all about, you want candidates to actually take the next step in the process. You need to give candidates a call to action by letting them see the top quality jobs available. The Tom Cruise film Jerry Maguire coined the phrase “show me the money.” If you want candidates to apply, show them the jobs.

Create An Innovative Culture
LinkedIn has created a culture where employees and business leaders can thrive and try out new ideas. That’s why they advertise their corporate culture heavily to prospective applicants. Among their culture, benefits and perks is a program they call inDays. One Friday a month, the company takes a day to put busy work aside and think creatively instead. This brands them as a company which recognizes the value of forward thinking. Instead of having worker bees droning at their work in the present, LinkedIn has set aside inDays to push employees to look for future innovations and the next great idea.

If your company wants big ideas, you’ll need to create an innovative culture. The best employees don’t want to just tread water, they want to leave a lasting impression on their workplace. Let your talent know the company is looking forward right from the application process.

Get On Film
The LinkedIn career page features a few online videos touting the benefits of working at the company. These videos paint a clear picture to interested applicants about what life is like at the company. Whether the videos are explaining the concept of inDays or just making a fun music video, getting your company culture on film makes it more attractive.

After all, a picture is worth a thousand words. A great recruitment video can tell job seekers where your company is, where it’s going and the kind of talent you need to get there. Use online video to tell your company story, whether it’s using a video interview to hire or getting coworkers together to explain your company’s core values. This way candidates can quickly “see” what a day in the life of your company is truly like.

LinkedIn might be the most “mature” of the social networks, but this doesn’t mean the company doesn’t know how to have fun. By using employees as brand ambassadors, creating a fun culture and sharing it with the power of online video, LinkedIn is attracting the best kind of talent. Your company can too if you connect with these valuable pieces of advice.

What are some hiring lessons you can learn from LinkedIn? Share in the comments!

IMAGE: Courtesy of Flickr by Shekhar_Sahu.

Heather Huhman

Heather R. Huhman is the Career & Recruiting Advisor for Spark Hire. She writes career and recruiting advice for numerous outlets, and is the author of Lies, Damned Lies & Internships: The Truth About Getting from Classroom to Cubicle (2011), and #ENTRYLEVELtweet: Taking Your Career from Classroom to Cubicle (2010).

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