Could a hashtag land you your next quality hire?

We can’t promise anything. But we have got 4 smart ways to connect with candidates on Twitter.

Monitoring hashtags and keywords

You can take keywords from your job descriptions and input these into the search bar of Twitter, whether as a hashtag (e.g. #graduate) or just the word (graduate).

Use Twitter’s search filters to tailor your results more effectively.

Adding #jobs or #hiring to your search may increase results from recruiters and agencies searching for candidates, which clearly won’t be relevant. However, if you’re prepared to sift through a number of results, it may throw up a few hidden gems of people looking for jobs:

Twitter search comes in handy because you can find people talking about topics that relate to the field you’re hiring for. Many of these people may not be actively looking for roles; but we all know the power of a passive candidate.

Taking part in Twitter chats

Twitter chats do what they say on the tin. At a prearranged time, usually each week, ‘chats’ will take place across Twitter. It could be #Crafthour, #MarketingUK or #DeveloperTalk; there are many, many different topics and chats taking place at any one time.

If you search for the term ‘Twitter chats’ on Google (or any other search engine!), you’ll find several different websites where you can browse categories to find topics that are relevant to you.

Why are Twitter chats valuable?  Well, at your fingertips lie a number of Twitter users, all of whom are interested about a particular sector or function – and who are passionate enough to engage in a Twitter chat.

For example, this one is a monthly UK Twitter chat based around nutrition:

The discussions might not all be valuable or relevant – but, again, you may be able to find golden nuggets: People who contribute to the chat articulately and who clearly have a love and knowledge of the field you’re hiring for.

What’s more, if your organisation actively engages with a Twitter chat, you can increase your visibility among potential candidates.

Hosting or promoting a competition

We can’t advise on any best practice, or competition terms or conditions. But you could consider holding a Twitter competition for students or graduates. Let’s say you’re a design firm – could you open up a ‘Design a Logo’ competition, which applicants can enter via Twitter and using a relevant hashtag?

In this example, you could add #competition #students #design #logo #FutureTalent

Running a campaign like this may not lead to immediate hires, but could be an effective and creative way of nurturing future talent by engaging students or other potential candidates with your brand before a recruitment drive.

Jumping on the bandwagon

This point has its roots more in candidate engagement than sourcing. Consider using your careers Twitter account as a newsjacking tool.

It’s less aggressive than it sounds! Newsjacking is when you jump on the back of a breaking news story or trend. This kind of Twitter activity can help increase your reach, as Twitter users may come across you via a relevant hashtag or search.

So, it’s currently Bake Off season. A clever way of newsjacking Bake Off might be to share images of your team’s baking efforts, with the hashtag #gbbo – or how about getting involved in the great dunking scandal of episode 1? #ToDunkOrNotToDunk

Innocent are a great example of how a brand can engage with current events or popular culture:

You could choose to do this on your organisation’s main Twitter account or careers account – whichever is most appropriate.

But, a note of caution: only jump on relevant band wagons. Don’t attempt to engage with stories or news that don’t reflect your organisation’s ethos.

Twitter can be a cost-effective and innovative sourcing tool…

…and it’s a fantastic opportunity to engage with a diverse potential talent pool through clever, humorous or relevant content. But do always be authentic, and never compromise your brand values for the sake of a hashtag.

Find out more

3 ways to source candidates using PPC

Why online profiles could be your secret talent weapon

Is your ATS ready for social recruiting?

About the author

Tristan Potter

Tristan has a decade's worth of experience writing content and copy for organisations across Bristol and the Southwest of England. He has written on a diverse range of topics, including technology, philosophy, politics, and recruitment. His writing has appeared in The Drum, HR Grapevine, and The Guardian, among other publications. He joined Hireserve in March 2022.