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LinkedIn is an awesome tool. You can use it to post your company’s open positions, find potential candidates, and learn about a candidate’s professional past. So let me guess, right now you’re probably thinking, “Here we go again, another social media outlet that we probably shouldn’t be using.” Well surprisingly, this time you’d be wrong. It’s ok to use LinkedIn during the hiring process…as long as you’re using it the right way.
Using LinkedIn The Right Way
With all of the benefits of LinkedIn, it’s hard not to get overwhelmed. But you have to remember that there’s a right way to handle it.
- Specific Search Capability – With LinkedIn’s specific search capabilities, you’re able to search for specific skills and experience necessary for a position your company has open. This feature allows you to use keywords such as “Marketing VP” if you’re looking for someone new for your marketing team who also has VP level experience. Then you can refine your search even further and apply filters such as, location, industry, or current company.
- LinkedIn Searches For You – Once you’ve created a search criteria, that includes all that you’re looking for in a candidate, save it and you’ll get automatic notifications when new results come in. This feature can be extremely helpful when you’re hiring for the same role on a regular basis.
- LinkedIn Groups – LinkedIn Groups are great for finding experts in your industry. With LinkedIn Groups you have the capability to identify with active group members who are experts in your industry and who may fit your hiring criteria.
Don’t Forget About Me, The EEOC
It is imperative that you do not forget about the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). LinkedIn has a lot of great content to show you about potential candidates. But you still risk seeing too much information.
So you might be saying to yourself “What could I possibly see on LinkedIn that I’m not supposed to see? All information on there is professional.” Yes, while that all is true, LinkedIn allows you to see someone’s profile picture. Which means that there’s still a possibility for prejudices and unconscious biases. So please be sure to keep that in mind when using LinkedIn. By using LinkedIn, you’re going to see information that is protected by the EEOC. Ensure that you have a policy in place that addresses this.
Verify! Verify! Verify!
I can’t stress enough how important it is to verify information you receive from a candidate’s LinkedIn. A candidate could be an awesome LinkedIn user and say that they graduated from a very prestigious college and has had jobs with the biggest companies and it all could be a huge lie in hopes to get a job. But what most employer don’t know is that almost 80% of resumes contain some sort of false or misleading information. Things like, embellished skill sets, incorrect job titles, or the length for how long they were employed with a company. If a candidate is willing to lie on their resume, you can only assume they would have no problem lying on their LinkedIn profile. So be sure to be mindful of that.
While LinkedIn is a great tool for assisting you in finding a great candidate for your company, you have to know how to use it the correct way, and the compliant way. Always make sure you’re verifying the information you find about a candidate.
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