Monday, October 7, 2013

Small Businesses: Job Candidates Cannot Find You (Part II)

In last week's article, we discussed two reasons why job candidates can't find you: the job ad on Craigslist looks shady, and the company's website is incomplete or outdated. We discussed how recruiting is a two way street: a company needs to give information before it can get information from candidates. Finally, we discussed how small business owners need to act like job seekers; put themselves out there, make themselves visible, and allow candidates to find them.

This week, we're going to discuss the last three reasons why job candidates can't find you:
  • Your LinkedIn account looks inactive.
  • The Google Plus (and/or Facebook) page is empty.
  • Your Twitter account is dead.

 Your LinkedIn Account Looks Inactive

You know those LinkedIn groups that allow locals in the same area to network with each other? I'm in them, and I bet you are too.

While most of the group is bent on persuading me to start my own business, you are probably creating a shady-looking job ad on Craigslist for a position that would be a great match for me. Unfortunately I don't know about this awesome opening because you didn't say anything to the group about it. Why not? Because you've probably forgotten about the LinkedIn account that you created for your business when it was nothing more than a business plan, a crude drawing of your logo, and a gutted room/building.

You created a LinkedIn account for a reason; maybe you didn't find what you were looking for within the first couple of months, and maybe you just forgot about it. I can relate; I closed out the first LinkedIn account that I created after three months because I got tired of being pressured to open my own business when I made it clear that I wanted to connect with local HR professionals, and work on actualizing another person's vision.

I understand what it's like to put yourself out there and get b.s. in return, it's frustrating; however, if you keep at it, you will eventually get something other than b.s. in return...

You might be able to find some local businesses that are willing to give you a discount on products/services you need, or may even be willing to give you a product/service you need in exchange for a product/service that they need.

You might find some college students who are willing to work for minimum wage in exchange for receiving valuable experience in their fields of study. Some of those college students might embrace your vision and stick around after they've graduated if the business grows.

If you need help with your LinkedIn profile, you might want to read Jim Stroud's online e-book. Jim discusses LinkedIn specifically on pages 74 - 81. The book is intended for job seekers, but it can help you revive your company's LinkedIn profile to attract candidates because it tells you what candidates are looking for in your company's profile.

The Google Plus (and/or Facebook) Page is Empty

You set up a Google Plus and/or Facebook page, right? Awesome!

If you included the company's name in the job ad on Craigslist, I'm going to Google the company's name to find out more about what the company does. At this point, I'm super-excited to learn more about the company and see if we might be a good match. I find your Google Plus page, and I see...
Okay... I'm not panicking... Maybe Google Plus didn't work out well for you, and you decided to use Facebook instead. I have a personal account on Facebook; I'll just log into my personal account, find your company page, and see...

No, no, no! Your company is a Smurf!? What's worse is that neither one of these pages has your company's mission statement, what product/service your company offers, or any recent comments on it. Say it ain't so, Mr./Ms.!

On a more serious note, consider this:

The company's mission statement is a reflection of your vision, and you should share this vision with job seekers. Why? Because if we can't believe in or commit to your vision, then we probably won't apply; however, if we can believe in and commit to your vision, then we will apply for a job.

Many job seekers don't want just a job... We want to belong somewhere, we want to be a part of something bigger than ourselves, and we need more than just a blank page to tell us if we belong with your company.

What if your company doesn't have a logo yet? It may be a work in progress, or you haven't found someone who shares your vision to create one for you... Tell us this! Post pictures of the work in progress, have a friend draw up a sketch on a napkin and take a picture of it, or draw a rough draft using MS Paint and post it!

Your Twitter Account is Dead

Okay... I really didn't find out more about the company from Craigslist, the company's website, LinkedIn, Google Plus, or Facebook. I haven't given up all hope because I can still look your company up on Twitter.

I manage to find your company on Twitter... Great! However, there isn't any new contact information posted on the Twitter profile, and you haven't Tweeted recently (or at all). I see that you have a follower or two, so I click on their names to discover that your followers haven't Tweeted recently either.

At this point, I have given up because I figure one of several things:
  1. You are a predator, and the ad is a scam to draw me into a "get rich quick" scheme.
  2. You are hiring, but not for the position that you posted.
  3. You don't really want me, or anyone else for that matter.
I hate to be repetitive, but....

Act like a job seeker; put yourself (and your company) out there, give us some information about what your company offers, be honest about what you need, and remember: 
If you give us the ability to connect with you, we will!

Post Disclaimers

The Craigslist address,, is fictitious (to the best of my knowledge). If it is yours, please let me know in the comments, and I will replace it with a different one.

The use of the company names and logos for Craigslist, LinkedIn, Google, Facebook, and Twitter in this article are not intended to imply that the contents of this article are approved by, endorsed by, affiliated with, or sponsored by any of these companies.

The intent of this article is to illustrate my personal experiences and opinions about the misuse of social media in general. It is not meant to discourage existing and potential users of this social media from using social media for its intended purpose.

1 comment :

  1. Certainly. This clearly explains why you named your blog “HR is Only Human.” It has limits. A fact every business superior should accept and learn to deal with. Like any other occupations, HR would work best when given the right support.


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