5 tips to help you recruit the right people online

Using the internet to recruit new employees for business has become the norm in a very short space of time. For people working in creative industries the internet is an indispensable tool and subsequently online recruitment appears a natural step in order to reach out to target markets.

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The internet has quickly become essential at recruiting the right people for your business.

Recruiting on the internet gives companies and candidates alike a great opportunity to secure the ideal employees and find themselves an exciting new job. Here are five tips to help small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) access and recruit top talent for their organisations.

Use social networking sites such as LinkedIn

Career-focused networking sites such as LinkedIn are a goldmine of information for growing small businesses. It is a great way of viewing profiles of successful employees and entrepreneurs and engaging in discussion regarding their availability and/or interest in your vacant roles.

Many candidates choose to make their LinkedIn profile public, meaning they are indexed by search engines and can therefore be found in Google when searching for a particular type of candidate.

Extend your recruitment reach via job boards and online agencies

Don’t be afraid to submit your vacant positions across a number of online recruitment agencies and job boards. Instead of simply placing an advertisement in a magazine or newspaper, extend your reach online with the potential of millions of views rather than thousands a month offline.

A vast percentage of employers use the internet daily, almost exclusively and the ability to have your vacant positions online within literally minutes improves the efficiency of your recruitment campaign.

Reduce cost-per-hire and retain flexibility

One of the biggest challenges facing HR managers is to reduce the cost-per-hire within their company whilst at the same time maintaining the quality of new talent. It is said that companies who use online recruitment technologies save up to 90% more than those who use traditional recruitment agencies and methods. Online recruitment enables recruiters to streamline recruitment campaigns, whilst promoting the company’s brand and values to a wider, more diverse talent pool.

Recruit using your own company website

Depending on how your company website is built you may be able to advertise careers and vacancies through your own content management system (CMS). Your company website should explicitly portray the vision and values of your company and is one of the most underrated ways to advertise for new talent. Remember, your own website is your time to shine to new recruits as well as new clients.

Use Facebook to develop your professional identity

Facebook is increasingly used as an online recruitment tool, with platforms and solutions for small businesses recruiting via Facebook. Workplace groups, advertisements and profiles can be created to generate discussion about your company as well as encourage applications for vacant roles.

Now is the time to embrace online recruitment and social networking both as a research tool and as a cost-effective way of connecting users and potential employees to add value to your business.

The internet and your job

In today’s social-media-centric culture, there is more to your identity than how your conduct yourself in public or what a piece of paper reports about your financial and criminal records. Social media pages in some cases are actually viewed as more honest representations of a person because many people don’t use censorship or discretion when updating them, often posting content that would embarrass or discredit them if seen by the wrong eyes.

Responsible employers now will probably look into a potential employee’s online presence, and use social media sites like Facebook or personal blogs to make final decisions. The good news is that you can use this fact to your advantage.

Be Responsible

While it’s understandable to want to post everything that is important, funny, or remarkable to you on a Facebook page, know that what you upload to Facebook might be seen by someone you wouldn’t necessarily want to see it, so conduct your Facebook activity with the same caution and restraint that you would in person.

Your Facebook page can also be blocked to people outside your friends list, so if you just can’t help yourself from posting unprofessional things, make sure to restrict access to your page.

Facebook's LogoBecome an Authority

Facebook is one way that a potential employer can try to learn more about you, but Facebook is only one way. Blogging can be a very powerful tool in looking for a job and can speak great volumes about you and your personal life, for better or for worse.

If you maintain a blog, again, be professional. Don’t post anything you wouldn’t want your potential boss to see – but don’t stop there. Try to establish yourself as an expert and an authority in your field. Connect with people on LinkedIn to build a following, and then write about your passion in an insightful, professional manner that would catch your employer’s attention.

Make sure to blog consistently, and more importantly, to interact with your peers and other enthusiasts. If you don’t have a blog, now would be a great time to start one. Just make sure you follow these guidelines, as well.

All of this will inform your potential employer that you have a great passion for your field, are knowledgeable enough within it to be helpful to others, and that you are a part of a network of professionals with similar interests, which will great increase your chance of getting hired. Remember, who you are online is almost as important as who you are in person, so create an online presence that will dazzle and impress.

See Anyone You Know? Face Recognition Comes Of Age

The National Academy of Sciences are about to publish an article in their proceedings entitled ‘Privacy In The Age Of Augmented Reality’, co-authored by Alessandro Acquisiti, Ralph Gross and Fred Stuzman. It is about developments in face recognition software.
How 2D facial scanners record identitiesTo use the authors’ words the document

“investigate(s) the feasibility of combining publicly available Web 2.0 data with off-the-shelf face recognition software for the purpose of large-scale, automated individual re-identification.”

They are also working on an app that can do it all from your phone! See the FAQ section here for more information. The article reports a series of experiments conducted over the last year or so during which the researchers try to identify a person from their photo using an over the counter face recognition software using information that is freely available over the internet.

The results are interesting. The experiments are as follows:
Students walking through the university campus were asked if their photo could be taken and to complete a questionnaire. As they were answering the questions the computation task was carried out, looking for a picture match on Facebook and requiring only seconds. In this case more than 30% of the students were immediately traced.

Because the faces were the same but the photos taken from different angles, humans had to decide which of the possible matches were the most appropriate, but that is not always the case. Some photos are replicated and therefore the computer can give a 100% guarantee that the match is correct.

For example in another experiment the researchers used an online dating agency that provided anonymous photos. In this case they could match names to the photos in about 10% of cases. In several cases the same photo had been used on different sites.

In a third experiment the knowledge gained was used to search for further private information, all freely available on the web, such as details of sexual preference, date and place of birth and this information even allowed them to generate the first five figures of the individual’s US social security number.

So it seems that we can draw a simple conclusion here, either now or in the very near future, as these technologies are improved and made freely available, anybody will be able to recognize anybody they see on the street, identify them through an app in their telephone, and find out about their interests and other personal information, if they have ever posted (or had posted for them) a photo of themselves on the internet.

For more information, please read my face recognition article on the Bassetti Foundation website.