Has social media changed your HR? Maybe it should.

As I’m writing this blog post, the social infrastructure of the digital age is quite the wild west. What I mean by this is that only “some” organizations have fully – or partially – grasped the ways in which social media can impact their human resource departments. 

In many of our blogs, and through our services, we spend a lot of time discussing instincts, but today we’d like to look at it from a different angle. The point this blog is to make sure that as a leader you’re equally evaluating both the futuristic and the foundational elements, when it comes to your employees and how you recruit, communicate, and ultimately retain them.

So, I’ll ask you this question: Is social media changing your organization’s HR? Maybe it should be.

How you recruit people.

It’s fairly obvious that recruiters can use social media to vet out employees already within the hiring process. This typically can be done with a simple search of the potential employee’s name. What’s a little more underutilized, is actually searching for employees with the right skills, backgrounds, and personality types that fit your organization. With the insurgence of social media, you don’t just have to post a job and wait for the applicants to come to you, you can actually search for the right employees.

How you communicate – internally.

Communication is the king of human resource success, and social media may just be the platform appropriate to facilitate that communication. Although additional digital resources exist including Slackand HipChat, utilizing groups on Facebook may be a more informal platform to communicate with your employees. When it comes to determining if this makes sense for your team, start by determining what specifically you’ll be communicating about (encouragement, team projects, strategy discussions, etc.). Each of these conversations can be best served on different platforms and in different ways. 

How you monitor what people are saying.

As we discussed in our last blog, employees will not act with only reason and no emotion. Because of this, and the addition of social media displaying “everyone’s” personal opinions, thoughts, and beliefs, it may be important for your HR team to monitor your employees social media accounts. Although you won’t want to put in place any social media policies without consulting with your legal team (some employee remarks may be protected by law), this is one area that teams – more so than ever – can protect the integrity of their organization’s digital representation. Remember, it only takes one bad review, or statement, to set in motion a human resource nightmare. 

How you deploy human resource initiatives.

No longer do HR teams have to travel from location to location teaching out of training manuals printed on thousands of pages of paper. Not only is this good for the environment (and your company’s bottom line), it also affords you the ability to launch initiative(s) faster. Although the initiative(s) may not be physically orchestrated on social media, using Facebook groups or semi-private posts to distribute the messages or to simply facilitate conversations can be extremely useful. 

As you continue to advance your human resources through the use of new technologies, I recommend that you also pay close attention to the development of your teams. Some of the best technological and futuristic strategies, including social media, will underperform without the “right” people associated with them.

Thus, it’s important to place weight in both the futuristic and foundational. When you’re able to balance these elements, you’ll become more effective at growing, grooming, and leadings teams.

At Affiance Coaching, we coach teams on how to reach optimum levels of productivity. If you’d like to learn more about how to hire and retain the “right” people, let’s connect!


Stephen Tisch