Social Media and HR

This article accompanies It's Personal

Thursday, September 16, 2010
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More than one-third (35 percent) of employers use social media to promote their organizations and one-fifth (21 percent) use it to recruit and research potential employees, according to a recently released survey.

In addition, about three in 20 (13 percent) employers use social media to strengthen their employment brands, according to a recently released CareerBuilder survey of 2,534 U.S. hiring managers and 4,498 U.S. workers.

Such sites are popular with workers as well, who report they use social media to research companies and jobs.

Employees report they would most like to see the following when they come across company pages on social-media sites:

* Job listings: 35 percent

* Q&As or fast facts about the organization: 26 percent

* Information about career paths within the organization: 23 percent

* Evidence that working at the company is fun: 16 percent

* Employee testimonials: 16 percent

* Pictures of company events: 12 percent

* Videos of new products/services: 10 percent

* Company awards: 9 percent

* Research or studies conducted by the company: 9 percent

* Videos of a day on the job: 8 percent

On the flip side, workers also shared the biggest turnoffs when encountering a company via social media, including:

* The company's communication reading like an ad: 38 percent

* Failure to reply to questions: 30 percent

* Failure to regularly post information: 22 percent

* Removing or filtering public comments: 22 percent

The human resource function manages the organization's social-media strategy in 19 percent of the organizations. Marketing was mostly responsible, at 43 percent, followed by public relations, at 26 percent.

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"As communication via social media becomes increasingly pervasive, organizations are harnessing these sites to help achieve a variety of business goals," says Jason Ferrara, vice president of corporate marketing for CareerBuilder, based in Chicago. "Social media allows organizations to communicate in ways that didn't exist 10 years ago, promoting their services and brands while also supplementing their recruitment strategy."

Businesses of all sizes and industries report using social media to promote their companies.

Four in 10 (44 percent) organizations with more than 1,000 workers said they do so, followed by companies with 501 to 1,000 employees (38 percent) and organizations with 500 or fewer workers (29 percent).

Comparing industries, leisure and hospitality topped those surveyed with 57 percent saying the use social media to promote their business, followed by IT, (48 percent), retail (43 percent) and sales (41 percent).

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