Main image of article Crowdsourcing Social Recruitment Innovation
For the third year in a row, TalentNet Interactive hosted a social recruiting conference at Iron Cactus on Austin's famous 6th street, to kick off South by Southwest.

#TalentNet at Iron Cactus

But this year’s event was different. And rightly so. As an industry, we’ve gone beyond the mass hysteria of thinking that social media will save us, as the silver bullet to our big, hairy, fanged recruiting problems. We want results (metrics) but are we really prepared for what we’ll discover? Part of that journey of expectations, is learning from the wins as well as the mistakes of others. This is where TalentNet got interesting and it involves 24 Hour Fitness. The San Ramon, CA based fitness company wanted to get their recruiting game into shape and shared intimate details around their talent acquisition efforts for their 400+ clubs. Two main tracks covered what I’ll call different types of learning patterns.


For the Tactile (Interactive) Learners

Case study breakout sessions in groups included key pieces of social recruiting, all focused on 24 Hour Fitness‘ recruiting needs:
  • Social Media Channels
  • Sourcing Techniques
  • Content/Messaging
"I found the case study concept both interesting/informative but also a fantastic opportunity for 24 Hour Fitness to get the blue print for a modern sourcing and recruiting program.” ~Bryan White
In theory, using this crowd sourcing model will enable the talent acquisition team to leverage the event attendees’ collective creativity for cost and time sensitive social recruiting solutions.

For the Auditory (Classroom) Learners

The slightly more conventional format included sessions on everything from mobile recruiting to diversity hiring. Some of the highlights around social specifically? Employment Branding Teela Jackson of Talent Connections, spoke on the impact of each employee on a company’s recruiting, or employer brand. Understanding the roles that people are already playing, and leveraging those to elevate the message, is the difference. From the tweet stream:
  • "All employees have the power of brand ambassadors." Some just don't know it yet. #TalentNet
  • "Partner with the mayors of your brand, and team get-it-done. They are not the same people." #TalentNet #DiceUnlimited
Cool Tools in Social Recruiting It‘s more than a bit ironic that in a session on social recruiting tools, one of the best pieces of advice is to be less of a tool. This comes from Craig Fisher, founder of TalentNet.
  • "Use personal content to drive traffic to business content. People want to work with other people!" ~ @Fishdogs #talentnet #DiceUnlimited
“He explained that he mixes some personal content in his tweets, Facebook posts and other updates because it makes him more human, more real, more authentic... All of this translates well for business since people want to interact with other people, not just companies, logos or brands.” ~Stacy Zapar


The Story of a Hire At SAP’s SuccessFactors, Will Staney is both a practitioner and a product development advisor. He analyzes recruitment marketing metrics and determines where the company should be spending those budget dollars. One source that he shared, revealed over 1,000 applications to get a single hire from general job postings. It took almost half that many, with just 458 applies for a hire from social recruiting activity. But that’s just part of his story. Only .9% of all tracked hires, were attributed to social media across their clients. Less than one percent. Which means that while social recruiting is more efficient and effective at converting the right applicants to hires, recruiters are still prioritizing the old, familiar broadcast communication methods, over real conversation. My three takeaways from TalentNet Interactive
  • All employees are brand ambassadors with different responsibilities.
  • Be more personal, more human, more relate-able.
  • Follow the source-of-hire numbers to start influencing recruiters' social behavior.
The recruiting conference bar has just been raised. It’s time to deliver a more dynamic learning experience. If that takes an appearance by the King to shake things up, so be it.