The pros and cons of using social media to recruit

Thinking of using social media as part of your recruitment strategy, but want to know a bit more about what you’re getting yourself into first? Keep reading to explore the pros and cons with us.


I think that there’s definitely a place for social media in recruitment, and it is also my belief that that role will develop and grow in future…

As opposed to agencies, job boards, referrals and print advertising, recruiting with social media is totally free. Which is one of the reasons that it is so attractive to those tasked with the duty of recruitment.

How to use social media to advertise a job vacancy


• Targeted audience.

Pro: Your followers on Twitter, or those who like your page on Facebook, are likely to already be familiar with your products and services. And fingers crossed some of that following aren’t just familiar with you, but are total brand evangelists- can you think of anyone better to hire?

(This, in my opinion, is the best reason to use social media as part of your recruitment strategy.)

Con: Everyone and their mothers might apply, which would leave your HR department totally saturated in CVs. If your business is a large one, consider how you might deal with the flood gates being opened.

• Free I tell you. 

Pro: Again, it’s free. And it has the additional benefit of being branded so that you’re in total control over the message of your advertisement, and the frequency with which it is posted.

Con: You might not want everyone in your office to know that you’re recruiting. Also, you may not want to alert the trillion billion million agencies out there to the fact that you’re recruiting (if you do, expect an onslaught of cold calls and heightened blood pressure).

• Plenty of jobseekers.

Pro: Vast amounts of jobseekers are actively taking to social networking sites in order to find a job. However, even those who aren’t using social media to job seek are likely to have some form of social presence through which you can connect to them.

Con: The best (TOP) candidates are not actively jobseeking, and thus even if they did see your tweet, or post, they wouldn’t apply. So you still need agencies to tap into these talent pools for you.

• Using existing networks. 

Pro: You can use social networking sites, and LinkedIn, to delve into your employees connections for good looking candidates (I mean talent wise). This also helps to find a new hire who fits into your business’s culture.

Con: It’s still a matter of luck as to whether you stumble upon the right people or not.

• Transparency 

Pro: It breaks down the boundaries between the business and the community.

Con: It can be difficult to measure your reach. You need to put metrics in place in order to understand how effectively your social recruiting strategy is working for you.

• Candidate screening

Pro: You can more accurately identify candidates who have potential by checking out what they’re saying on social sites, as well as what their interests are to see if they’re a good cultural fit.

Con: Some of the best candidates have no social media presence. Eek.


Feelings towards using social media in the HR world can be mixed at times, with people questioning its value and effectiveness. However, it does have value. Even if you’re using it for screening more so than lead sourcing, it will give you a fuller picture of the candidates you’re considering.

But it’s still early days.

For more articles on the impact of social media in the world of HR please click the pink writing.

In the meantime, and as always,

Happy Hiring.