I work at an HR media company and we’re always looking for innovative ways to retain and engage talent. During the recent “Great Reshuffle” and talent shortages, organizations turned to new social media channels to advertise job listings and authentically convey their employer value proposition. This process innovation is crucial in a tight labor market.
Inherently, job listings aren’t particularly creative or eye-catching. Plopping typical job posts on social media is a surefire way for users and job seekers to scroll past this content without even realizing. Or worse, an obvious or ugly job listing will disrupt the user’s experience and possibly turn them off to the brand overall. To remedy this, major companies began using creative ways to promote job openings while staying genuine to their employer value proposition.
A distinct example is Bud Light’s listing for a social media position, or “Chief Meme Officer”. The post listed a few fun requirements for the position, like knowing how to use the “lasso thingy” in Photoshop, but the post mainly raised awareness for Bud Light’s brand persona and open positions. Additionally, the post emphasized the quality and filtration of Bud Light’s new seltzer, raising additional awareness for the product, and included a call to action for those unsure if they should apply as all applicants were entered in a sweepstakes for a 3 month supply of Bud Light Seltzer. Even for social media users uninterested in the job listing, the post acted as its own marketing campaign by raising awareness and activating users to try the Bud Light Seltzer (McClaren, 2020). Overall, Bud Light’s efforts were successful from a marketing standpoint. From a talent acquisition standpoint, their efforts were lacking. The listing, only promoted on one social media channel, excluded the majority and didn’t effectively communicate all necessary requirements.
While Bud Light’s Chief Meme Officer was a fun talent acquisition strategy coupled with product awareness, not all companies have the resources to pull this off. Additionally, more serious or involved job listings must include more information centered around the job itself. How can these tactics translate if a company doesn’t already have a social media following?
As employees looked for work throughout the pandemic, TikTok became a centralized information hub. Users would post video resumes detailing their experience and post it with a slew of hashtags like #TikTokResumes. This trend started as a unique way to convey skills and experience while reaching a variety of companies all at once. As the trend continued, TikTok started a program for companies to advertise open roles, invite users to submit video resumes, and hire talent. While acting as a new-age and interactive form of LinkedIn, resume videos came with a new concern: user privacy. Integrating TikTok into a job search effectively gives the social media giant access to data and analytics they didn’t have before. Additionally, it creates a space where accounts can imitate employers to gain access to sensitive information. It’s safe to say TikTok likely does not share the same privacy standards as LinkedIn or Indeed. Even with several pages dedicated to protecting sensitive information on Indeed, the platform still has a history of posting scams in the form of job listings. Going forward, employers and platforms must take additional action to protect user privacy and information and users must stay vigilant on what they share to several social media channels.
Overall, I think utilizing new channels of social media is a great way to find talent and hire. But, with these new channels comes a new set of responsibilities for job seekers and employers. Personally, I’ve seen my fair share of scams on Indeed and LinkedIn. As employers look to find new avenues of reaching job seekers, these channels must take action to further protect users through verified accounts or authentication requirements. There are several other major companies using social media in a new way to engage talent, like Disney’s “A Day as a Cast Member” series or Chick-fil-a’s employee spotlight, that doesn’t put the employer or user at risk. Additionally, employers will need to emphasize mobility in their efforts to effectively attract passive talent, or those not necessarily looking for a new position. Going forward, the talent market and its tools will continue to evolve, unearth new issues, and solve them. I’m excited to watch.