Today’s guest blogger is Steve Mindel, IRS recruiter for Illinois and Wisconsin.
Over the past several months, I have been taking advantage of virtual recruitment resources. These tools have proven to provide a great way to communicate to a wider audience. After taking several months to focus on this new strategy, I realized something was missing.
I recently had the opportunity to attend a face-to-face career panel, and it dawned in on me! I miss the connection, the emotion of talking to someone, reading the looks on their faces and responding to them using similar body language. It never crossed my mind that this is something I valued as part of the recruitment process. While you can be positive in a virtual environment and have some emotional connection, you cannot see the excitement, the gratitude, and the way someone responds to what you’re saying; even looking at someone’s eyes. I realized, this is what I miss most.
As I’m sure many recruiters are aware, some virtual events tend to cost just as much – if not more – than a traditional face-to-face event. Recruiting managers use buzz phrases like: ‘bang for the buck’ and ‘cost savings,’ and talk about how there is a ‘larger base of applicants.’ These phrases sound good in presentations and on the phone, but the reality is that the emotional connection is low. This low connection can sometimes translate into disinterest, which is a disadvantage of the virtual world.
When I attend face-to-face events, I like the overall feeling I get from job seekers. In the candidate’s eyes, I can see the interest they have. I can also tell when they feel like they are looking for something else. When a candidate is passionate, they can read my demeanor, which is hopefully interpreted the same way to them. Is there a way to bring this same kind of feeling to virtual recruitment without using the cliché emoticons that we use out of habit?
While the increased use of webcams and Google hangouts has started to become more popular, I’m sure this will increase some of the emotional connection that candidates have with recruiters and human resources staff. While there are often free events and low-cost events that are a great benefit in the virtual recruitment world; at the end of the day, I’d put my money in a face-to-face event simply because of that emotional connection.
How do you overcome the lack of face-to-face interaction on social media sites?