Use LinkedIn for Recruiting Employees

Social Networking Sites Can Yield Top Qualified Talent

Use LinkedIn for recruiting your new employees through networking.
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LinkedIn and other social networking sites are advantageous for employers for both networking and recruiting purposes. The potential for LinkedIn and other social networking sites to play a major role in your employee recruiting strategy increases as potential employees increasingly post their profiles on these sites each year.

It's not enough anymore just to post a job opening on,,, or other online job boards. That's because employers are inundated with hundreds of resumes from unqualified applicants who mindlessly post on the big boards.

You shouldn't forego the job boards altogether, but you should recognize that as the online social networking world continues to expand, there are better ways to recruit superior employees.

How Employers Are Using LinkedIn for Recruiting

The world of recruiting is constantly changing. More and more, the focus is on social networking sites and smaller, specialized job boards. Here's how employers are using the robust networking site LinkedIn to recruit talent.

LinkedIn users:

Develop and expand a personal network of professionals to whom the employer or recruiter can send a request for a referral of a recommended candidate for a particular job opening. LinkedIn boasts members from all 500 of the Fortune 500 companies. LinkedIn's 467 million members comprise 148 different industries, and include well over 100,000 recruiters.

Social media strategist, Scott Allen, co-author of "The Virtual Handshake," says that in addition to building a referral chain, "by building authentic relationships, virtually as well as face-to-face, people will actually make referrals—taking the time to think of possible candidates/prospects in response to your query, or even proactively refer people to you when they hear of a need.

But they only do that if they have a strong enough relationship with you. Otherwise, you’re undifferentiated from the dozens or hundreds of other recruiters they’re connected to. Strong relationships, not large contact databases, build this kind of business."

Stay in touch with former, valued, trusted colleagues for potential future employment possibilities. You don't want to lose touch with people who you've successfully worked with in the past. These people could be your next best employees.

Actively search for candidates among LinkedIn members by using keywords for people with the required qualifications listed in their LinkedIn profile. This is why keyword rich, well-developed, complete profiles are recommended for professionals on LinkedIn. It's always important to share your contact information so others can easily contact you whether you are actively or passively job hunting or looking for employees.

Develop a complete, keyword-rich profile for your company on LinkedIn. Prospective employees, who are looking for employers, also use keywords to search LinkedIn. They also look at company profiles to compile lists of places where they'd like to work. Potential employees may even contact you through LinkedIn's mailing system, Inmail. 

Search for potential employees by past or current employer who may have employed people with the skills and experience you seek for your company.

Search for employees based on references from recommenders you trust, the process used on LinkedIn whereby members of your network write notes recommending you.

Can use Inmail, your internal inbox at LinkedIn, to request assistance from your network or selected professionals to find a qualified candidate.

Respond to questions in the Answers section of LinkedIn. Responding can raise your profile in the LinkedIn community.

Can join groups on LinkedIn. Participants in groups may share the interests, memberships, specializations, backgrounds, and experience that you seek in a potential employee. Group members may also know of a potential employee with the profile you seek.

For a fee, can post jobs on LinkedIn and recruit and hire candidates. LinkedIn combines job listings, candidate search, trusted referrals, and the power of networks to give you results.

Seeking employment can search LinkedIn free of charge using keywords related to their desired positions. Certain premium features are available to job searchers for a fee.How Employers Use LinkedIn for Recruiting

Can upgrade the memberships of your key managers and supervisors to premium so they can search for, and contact, candidates privately on LinkedIn.

How Employers Use LinkedIn for Recruiting

Susan Graye, a Hewlett Packard, Global Staffing Strategic Initiative Manager says she has been part of the LinkedIn network for years and has used the site in a number of ways to find employees including searching by the employer (current/past), using InMail, purchasing advertising, and networking.

Graye has filled jobs from sales positions to executive-level jobs using LinkedIn and thinks LinkedIn allows Hewlett Packard to proactively network and learn on a continual basis.

Devin Blanks, of DB Search Group, a Minneapolis, MN-based staffing and recruiting firm, says,

"I have personally been a part of the LinkedIn community since my early career. Currently I have been using it frequently to connect with many hard-to-find professionals whom we may not have had the opportunity to connect with using more conventional means.
"Most recently, we wanted to fill a Senior Director of HR position. As this position was more complex than usual and called for a very specific skill set, I used two different approaches to using LinkedIn."First, we posted the position, and second, we viewed potential candidates through second and third party connections via my immediate contacts and requesting an introduction. I got great response, met with a few candidates, and filled the position with a LinkedIn member.
"Most of our candidates come from either our own internal database, referrals, cold-calling, and non-online networking associations. However, when I can't find a very specific candidate through those means, I will definitely keep LinkedIn as a serious recruit networking source."

Greg Buechler, the founder, and CEO of Off the Hook Jobs says that he uses LinkedIn for every search.

"I do advanced searches to identify potential candidates and typically will send InMails rather than trying to get to a person via the introduction route. If an individual has an email address posted in their profile, I may also send an email directly to the person.
"I have filled several jobs over the years and typically they are at the executive level. I don't see much below a Senior Manager or Director level as being very effective on LinkedIn. But at Senior Manager, Director, Vice President, CEO levels, it is great."