Slack. Do you use it? It’s a great way of helping people communicate within organizations – but did you realize it can also be used for recruiting? I recently spoke to Angela Bortolussi, a partner at Recruiting Social, to get the scoop.
Listen and subscribe to this podcast on iTunes, SoundCloud or keep reading for a summary of our conversation.
Why would we be using Slack for recruiting?
“So my background is in technology and product recruitment. From my experience in technology recruitment, I’m finding that more gainfully employed, engineers for example, are spending less time on like LinkedIn checking InMails – which, for us, being in the business of a recruitment, is difficult because we want to engage with them about opportunities, but obviously they’re being bombarded with messages from all recruiters around the country.
So when I first got introduced to Slack I found it to be a platform where I could connect with talent and have more intimate conversations, going back to that real time conversation. You can engage with them in that moment about, really, about anything.
And a nice thing to about Slack is when you think of it from a recruitment perspective, you’re really honing in on their turf. So if it’s a topic, for example, about maybe AngularJS, you can start a conversation about their interest and then, you know, kind of gradually get into opportunities that might interest them with your employer.”
What’s a step-by-step approach to using Slack for recruiting?
I think my number one rule if you’re going to use this as a recruitment tool is really to step up your knowledge. Slack offers so many great demonstration videos on their website looking at what the platform is and how to navigate around channels. And then I think the next step is finding out the purpose behind your Slack channel that interests you. For example, if you’re looking for product managers, maybe finding a relevant channel that might be of interest to product manager in terms of just the topics of the conversation that they’re talking about, maybe job opportunities that they could be talking about within that channel. Right now, I think Slack, they’ve probably got about 300 communities happening right now, so it can get a little bit confusing to see all the Slack channels in which one would be of interest, so, I think it’s best to hone in on ones that pique your interest as a recruiter and, of course, understanding who your audience is within those Slack communities as well.
And then I think it’s really important to step up your ‘Slack etiquette’, as I call it. So really, in this case, when you go into a Slack channel – because what happens is when you go into a Slack channel you actually have to get invited to that Slack channel. So, once you get invited by the administration person within that community, I would say reach out to them directly just to understand the rules and the regulations and best practices within that community and know they’ll be quite transparent as well. After you get the lay of the land of the Slack community then I would just kind of navigate around just to see what other channels are within that community.
So, for example, if there’s a job or career channel, check it out because that’s a great opportunity for recruiters to post the jobs that they’re essentially looking to fill. And of course, within those Slack channels it’s a free place to post jobs, and I think that’s the really cool thing about Slack, is that we can use it as an extension of our recruitment best practices as well.
So once you find a channel that really interests you, then you can really start engaging with people in terms of the topics of conversation. So, someone might be talking about their interest in using like AWS for example. Find out what interests them about AWS and then you can actually use that in conversations with candidates as well. So it’s almost like as a recruiter you know what you’re talking about in some way or form.”
How long will it take before every recruiter on the planet joins Slack?
“You know what, that’s a tough question to answer, because I think if we look at LinkedIn for example, you know, it’s immediate in terms of that actual talent pool that you can tap into. Slack takes a little bit longer just in terms of, engaging with people, talking about job opportunities, even though the conversations are all happening in real time, it doesn’t mean that that candidate is going to be particularly interested in your job at that moment. But it’s the same with LinkedIn, it’s the same with Twitter, it’s the same with every other social media channel.”