Canadian Treasurer

November 19, 2014

Canadian companies not using social media to find talent

Toronto, ON-- Only 23 per cent of employers say they use social media to find talent, says Hays Canada. The report, based on a national poll of more than 1,000 hiring managers, human resources professionals and candidates, also revealed that half of employers lack recruitment strategies and jobs are often marketed to the wrong audience.

The  poll evaluated the strategies and types of digital tools Canadian companies use to attract talent and where people search for work online. While employers tend to favour generic online job boards, post-secondary career sites and traditional online ads, candidates gravitate to social media such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. The same poll also uncovered that the small number of employers who do use social media often miss their target by posting jobs on consumer-oriented channels.    

Not surprisingly, employers say their efforts to fill positions via consumer sites often translate to negative results. Two-thirds of candidates sourced through social media are not an ideal fit and are considered 'mediocre to poor' at best. A further 22 per cent are deemed 'very poor'.

"Despite the popularity of social media among professionals, Canadian employers fall well-short in their effort to connect with and attract qualified talent," says   Rowan O'Grady, president Hays Canada. "In an economy that suffers from a skills shortage, it's crucial that employers carefully evaluate how they're engaging online. Failing to do so results in wasted resources, lost time and zero results."

The   Hays  ‘ Where People Are Guide’  shows that many companies lack a recruitment strategy and overlook social media as a way to interact with talent and nurture a candidate pool. When asked how social media fits into their company's networking efforts, more than half (58 per cent) believe growing a following is important but cannot pinpoint why. A further 34 per cent are unsure about the size of their current social media following.

"Posting a job on a consumer social channel is like showing up late to a cocktail party and trying to force a conversation about economics when everyone is talking about cars. It just doesn't work," added O'Grady. "A company's strategy should be about starting a two-way conversation and building credibility and a following by regularly sharing useful content. Proactively engaging and network-building in this way is crucial to identifying the best talent when professionals take steps to seek out a new employer."

It's not all doom and gloom

Canadian employers clearly need help when it comes to social media as a networking and recruitment tool however, their use of technology to extend reach to professionals appears to be heading in the right direction. Nearly 40 per cent of employers' websites today are mobile-friendly and an additional 12 per cent are taking steps toward a mobile-enabled platform, which is a key aspect of connecting with candidates wherever they happen to be.

"I'm encouraged to hear employers are on the right technology path and I think that's because it's a no-brainer," said O'Grady. "Digital and social tools constantly evolve. What's big today is gone tomorrow and that's a daunting prospect but we can make it less so. Our experience lies in helping companies connect with the talent they need while allowing them to focus on their core business."

Key statistics from Hays Canada's ' Where People Are  Guide':

  • Almost 100 per cent of candidate respondents are on at least one social media channel and more than 50 per cent use social media to job hunt yet, only 23 per cent of employers use social media to recruit

  • 63 per cent of employer networks are comprised of consumers

  • Candidates drawn from consumer channels are considered by employers to be mediocre (66%) while 20 percent are considered very poor

  • 50 per cent of employers either do not or are unaware if their organization has a recruitment strategy

  • 58 per cent of employers believe growing their social media following is a core business objective however, 32 per cent are concerned about the threat social media can have on their brand






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