Use social media and talent acquisition services to market your job openings and attract the best talent.

While staffing a construction company has probably never been easier, many business owners are increasingly concerned about how to find reliable and highly skilled employees. Industry leaders are using social media and other online technologies, such as talent acquisition services, to successfully grow their businesses and attract top young talent.

Social media provides a direct line to prospective employees and has become a necessity for most businesses, regardless of their size. More than 85 million results appear in Google after searching the phrase “use social media to find jobs,” and each article advises job seekers to engage in sites like Twitter and LinkedIn.

Hiring managers should familiarize themselves with this still-evolving recruitment method. Today’s job seekers not only have shorter attention spans, but they also have instant access to an ever-growing number of information sources, making them increasingly harder to reach through traditional advertising media.

A report released from The Nielsen Company in early 2010 showed that Americans spend nearly a quarter of their time on social media sites and blogs. And, by all indications, this number will only continue to increase.

Reaching top recruits requires a defined strategy, which should include social media and other online technologies, such as talent acquisition services. Keep 
these tips in mind when contemplating your online recruitment strategy.

Focus your efforts.  A multitude of social media networking outlets exist, such as Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn. This can make it difficult to determine which ones make the most sense for your recruiting efforts. Maintaining one social media forum well will return significantly higher dividends than dabbling in several platforms poorly.

Do your homework.  Mistakes usually result from jumping into the social media realm too quickly without having enough research or knowledge. This can result in using the wrong tone in your writing, focusing on the wrong demographic or targeting the right demographic with the wrong message. 

Start simple.  If you are just getting started, pick one social media outlet that is the easiest to navigate and maintain—and one that you are most familiar with. Then, make it an integral part of your overall marketing effort. You can strategically plan to expand to other social media outlets as appropriate.

Consider niche networks.  Many recruiters have gotten into the habit of using broad-market online talent services to reach the masses. But niche services provide a more targeted approach to recruiting by delivering news of your open positions to the virtual doorsteps of the most qualified candidates.  

Today’s online recruitment services go beyond the “online job board” model and offer candidate sourcing and scoring services for hiring managers with too little time or staff to produce the all-important candidate “short list.”  

Since niche providers are industry-specific experts, they will more likely help ensure your job postings and search processes are compliant with the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) and the Department of Transportation (DOT) and other agency regulations—which prevents a liability from occurring.

Focus on quality versus quantity. Particularly in today’s employment environment, the construction market is crowded with job seekers. Quantity of applicants is not the issue. Quality, however, is another story. A good online recruitment strategy pushes your company farther away from the “panic hires” that are a reality for many construction business owners. A more defined approach allows you to find better people faster through proactive and ongoing recruiting methods. Remember, the goal is to “sift out” unqualified applicants, allowing the solid matches to rise to the top.

Do not abandon your website.  Your company website is still the bread-and-butter of comprehensive information about your business. Your social media strategy should incorporate the specific pages of your site that are most important to potential candidates. Likewise, your website should push visitors to your social media efforts, introducing them to the most up-to-date information available about your company, its achievements and the opportunities to join as an employee.

Stay engaged in conversation.  The reason marketers have fallen head over heels for social media is because tools like blogs and YouTube allow a company to showcase not only its news and expertise, but its personality as well. Therefore, do not use social media solely to broadcast your company’s jobs openings. Find ways to engage your followers, and add value to their conversations. 


To attract and maintain a social media audience, genuine and compelling content must drive your efforts. Interact regularly, and provide a rich content base addressing high-profile topics and key issues within your industry. Top job prospects want to know that the company they are interested in (or is interested in them) is on top of current events, provides a welcoming work environment and is aware of how the industry is evolving.