With over 590 million users on its platform, LinkedIn is a great tool to help you find and connect with high quality talent. When used effectively, it can often be more useful than Seek or other job websites. Here are our tips how to use LinkedIn to find good talent.
1. Make yourself look good first
Lots of candidates are turning to LinkedIn to find high quality employment opportunities and connections. How you (personally) and your business look to them can make a difference, so it’s worth building LinkedIn maintenance into your recruitment and marketing strategy.
To come across as professional and attractive to candidates, start with some of these tips.
Polish up your company page
If you don’t have a company page – you should probably have one. They’re free and easy to create, and give you another platform on which to talk about what you do and why it matters. Ensure all the details on this page are up to date, and post regular updates (at least once a week) on the team, projects in progress and general business updates.
Polish your page with this in mind: Why would a candidate want to work for you? What’s going to get their attention?
Polish up your personal profile (and your team’s)
If you’re the business owner or HR Manager, it’s important that you polish up your own personal profile, and encourage your whole team to do the same. Candidates are likely to look at the profiles of other people who work at the company, and they’ll be looking for specific signs on these profiles, like role clarity, aligned values and vision, evidence of career progression opportunities and more. They’ll probably pay particular attention to management in the company, so business owners should ensure their details are up to date.
Again, edit your profile with this thought in mind: Why should a candidate want to talk to you? What will make them respond to your message? What can you put into your profile to grab their attention?
Encourage your team to proactively use Linkedin
This can be done by posting updates of their own and engaging with other content. Even spending 10 minutes a week on LinkedIn can show that they’re active, engaged users, which demonstrates that they’re interested in their work and driven to participate in conversation.
2. Search for candidates effectively
So you’re on the hunt for your next hire. Don’t wait for applications to roll in on their own – do some searching yourself on LinkedIn’s extensive database. Even if you’re not actively recruiting right now, it’s good to be proactive and build your own talent pool. You’re likely to need to dip into it soon enough.
LinkedIn’s search function is very good, and can be used to get great results. Our main advice here is: use search terms, and use a variety of them.
For example, if you’re searching for your next Loan Processor, use a range of search terms like:
- Loan Processor
- Loan Packager
- Client Services Officer
- Client Services Manager
- Broker Assistant
And include the terms ‘mortgage’ and ‘home loan’. You can search these terms at the same time by separating terms with a comma. This search should pull up a list of potential candidates, and you can even filter by location. Keep in mind that some people may be open to moving for the right position, however.
3. Qualify at a glance
Finding a list of people is one thing, but you don’t want to waste your time in conversations with dozens of candidates that won’t really be the right fit for your business.
A LinkedIn profile can reveal a lot about a person, so it’s worth doing a quick scan of the person’s profile before you reach out to them. Things to look out for include:
How well their profile is put together
If it’s well written and all the fields are filled in, you’ll know you’ve found someone who puts effort in and is a great communicator. If, however, there are lots of spelling errors or the profile is incomplete, they may not be the sort of candidate you’re looking for. This is completely up to your judgement, keeping in mind that there may still be great candidates who don’t use LinkedIn much.
This section of their profile can reveal a lot, such as how long they’ve worked in the industry, and if they’ve moved around a lot.
Someone who’s received lots of sparkling recommendations from past employers or colleagues may be a star performer. This is a great way to see what others say about them.
4. Reach out
First impressions count, and connecting with a potential candidate on LinkedIn is an opportunity. Don’t overthink it, don’t overload them with information, and don’t even push your offer on them just yet. In fact, a good template for connecting with someone for the first time is as simple as:
Hope you’re well.
I noticed we operate in the same space so thought I’d reach out to connect on LinkedIn.
I hope you don’t mind.
When you do reach out a second time to gauge their interest in a job opportunity, provide enough information to get them hooked, but don’t give away too much. Your messaging from here will be about enticing them to meet in person.
LinkedIn has some great tips on recruiting in their publication Inside the Mind of Today’s Candidate. Check it out to improve your candidate messaging.
5. Consider upgrading to Premium
If finding and employing the right candidates is a pain point for your business, upgrading to a paid LinkedIn Premium account might be worth your while. This will allow you to access features such as:
- The ability to send messages to people you aren’t connected with via InMail
- Access to more people via search
- Access to expanded profiles and more candidate data
- Premium search filters.
It’s not for everyone, but this could be something to consider if you’re doing a lot of hiring.
Alternatively, if you’re looking for someone to manage the process of finding great candidates for you, using the services of a specialist recruiter could save you more money in the long run. Whether you’re a business looking to refine your recruitment strategy, or a candidate looking for your next exciting opportunity, get in touch with our expert team for a free consultation.