10 Easy Ways To Build Social Media Into Your HR Practice

Each time I travel and meet new people at various speaking engagements, people ask for ideas on how they can incorporate social into their HR practice or their business in general.  There are more ways than I can possibly list, but I came up with ten that are relatively simple to implement.

My plan is to give a brief description today, then provide more detailed posts about the steps to actually accomplish each one.

10 Easy Ways to Build Social Media into Your HR Practice:

  • Tweet your jobs-  It’s becoming common for companies today to have a company Twitter account.  Make sure that at a minimum, your recruiters are sharing their job openings on Twitter.  They should also tweet reasons candidates would want to work at your company, share awards or recognition the company has received and in general, any positive messages about the organization.
  • Engage with candidates on Twitter and Linkedin-  The key to closing a candidate on a specific position is the ability of the recruiter and interviewers in connecting and engaging with the candidate.  Connect proactively with the candidate on sites like Twitter and LinkedIn.
  • Find HR resources on Twitter, then connect-  Twitter has a “Lists” feature where you can search for specific types of people who use the medium.  Search for other HR professionals or recruiters then start following.  Even if they are not following you yet, “tweet” at them and introduce yourself. It’s a great way to build your network and add valuable HR resources to your practice.
  • Strengthen your employer brand with FourSquare- Make sure that your organization, or each of the locations, is listed on FourSquare.  Encourage employees to “check in” each day and once they do, encourage them to leave “Tips” on why it’s great to work there.  This is a great way to strengthen your brand and you can easily reward employees who are most active.
  • Reach out to passive candidates via FourSquare–  One tactic I’ve heard about may be a bit controversial but in times where there is a talent shortage in certain skill sets, you may need to try innovative ways to connect.  Post open jobs in locations near your target candidate market.
  • Use a blog to communicate HR news- Not everyone or every company should have a blog.  However, if you have at least one person (exec or HR team member) who is committed to writing, a blog is a great way to share HR news.  The key is also having someone who can respond to comments and questions that come in from employees.
  • Create podcasts for employees- Do leaders have regular meetings about the health of the organization?  Do you have HR activities like annual benefit enrollment, merit increases, performance reviews and such?  If so, you can use podcasting as a way to save key information in a format that is easy for employees to listen to anywhere and with minimal time needed.
  • Post YouTube video showing what it is like to work at your company–  Another way to strengthen your brand is to ask employees to record videos of what they like about working at your company.  These videos can be posted on your intranet, on the company site or via sharing sites like YouTube.  It’s a great way to engage both current and potential employees.
  • Reward employees who share positive company messages using social platforms– Instead of being the company that monitors social platforms to catch employees posting things that are considered wrong, catch them posting messages that are positive about the company.  Set up an incentive program to encourage positive participation on social media.
  • Create a LinkedIn Alumni group-  LinkedIn is the one platform employees and employers tend to agree is the most business focused.  Since membership is on the rise, take advantage and set up organization groups to drive interaction.  Specifically, don’t forget about your employees who are leaving the company.  Ask each one to join an alumni group and use it as a way to remain connected, share company news, and provide information on the industry.

There you have it- ten quick things you can do to amp up your HR team’s involvement in social media.  Stay tuned over the next two weeks for more detailed “how to” posts on each of the items.  

What have you done to get your HR team involved in social?  Share in the comments.

The How and Why of Leveraging Internal Social Networks

How do you feel about influence?  Do you actively try to map it in your organization?  Over the last few months, I’ve begun to hear this theme come up more and more in the workplace.  To me, this is like the puzzle piece we’ve been missing.  I became more personally interested in it when I met Josh Letourneau of Knight & Bishop earlier this year.  Today I’m at the Conference Board’s Senior HR Executive Conference and it appears to be a theme they are picking up on as well.

Eric Mosley, Chief Executive Officer of Globoforce presented one of the finest sessions I’ve seen all year.  I’d like to share some of the items he covered regarding the internal social networks in organizations and the impact of tracking the relationships.

The discussion began around how the word “social” means different things to different companies.  It’s one of those words that is everywhere lately, much like innovation.  So, the first step has to be defining what the word social means in your organizational culture.  For purposes of his discussion, social did not just mean social network platforms.  It mainly meant the internal network that we each have in our organization in order to share information.

The How

Analysis by J. Letourneau of knightbishop.com

Globoforce sees the benefit of tracking and identifying the internal social network and are doing so through social graphing.  It allows the leaders to see who the influencers are and which employees are breaking down the silo barriers.  This is where using social network analysis comes into play.  By visually charting the connectedness of employees throughout your organization, you begin to see where there are the greatest synergies and where the opportunities lie.  From a succession planning aspect, you also begin to promote not just based on who is “next in line”, but you see who actually adds the most value from a connectedness standpoint.  It will also indicate where your vulnerability lies because if you lose key influencers, it can fracture department relationships.

The Why

Eric talked about how the size of the organization can impact these relationships.  Imagine you have 3,000 employees or even 30,000.  It is not possible to share information easily among this number of employees in an efficient manner.  According to Dunbar’s number, the amount of relationships humans can absorb is 150.  Think how that impacts your workplace.  If you could identify the influencers, you could use them as the focal points in information sharing.  That would make those 3,000 or even 30,000 much more integrated in the organization’s communication.  It would also bring those employees much closer.

If you believe like I do that influence does not come from holding a specific title and that organizations need to do a better job of identifying their influencers, I encourage you to connect with Globoforce.  They are also doing amazing things with regard to identifying recognition via social graphing.

What are your thoughts?  Do you have any sources we should all know about around influence?  Share them in the comments.

*Thank you to The Conference Board for hosting me at the Senior HR Executive Conference.  As always, the opinions are all my own and I look forward to sharing more key learning points from this year’s conference!