04 July, 2012

Why Employers Should Learn To Use Linkedin (Instead of Paying For Employment Ads That Bring The Wrong Candidates)

Paid employment ads are helpful when you need to hire 100 call center workers or 50 temps but they aren't very useful when you need to hire a one-of-a-kind professional with very specific SKEs (skills, knowledge, experience).

For example, Charleston area DME (durable medical equipment) companies recently paid Charleston newspapers for ads they hoped would attract sales reps, customer service reps and managers. Whether the ads said so or not, these DME companies were hoping to attract applicants with DME experience. In fact, they hoped to attract applicants who were currently doing these jobs for a competitor but they probably didn't because people who already have a job aren't usually looking at employment ads. These people are called "passive candidates" because you can't attract them by running an ad, you have to go out and find them. You could hire a headhunter to do the job or you could learn how to use Linkedin and do it yourself. Over the years I've found respiratory therapists, pharmacists, physical therapists, sales reps and all levels of managers and executives for DME companies and collected some ridiculous fees for doing so but I never, ever paid for ads since, as I said, ads only bring in people who are looking at ads, so why didn't these three Charleston area DME companies use Linkedin? 

With my free Linkedin account and a few minutes of my time I found dozens of  "passive candidates" within 25 miles of Charleston who currently work in the DME industry. Do you suppose some of these people might know somebody with DME experience who would be interested in a DME management, sales or customer service job? I also found hundreds of health industry people within 25 miles of Charlelston who work in places where they come into contact with DME people. Social workers. Physical therapists. Case managers. Respiratory therapists. Nurses. Pharmacists. Do you suppose some of these people may know people with DME experience who might want to talk to these paid advertisers about their management, sales and customer service openings? Of course they do. 

There are also dozens of DME-specific and health industry groups in Linkedin where these paid advertisers could meet thousands of DME professionals who might know somebody who wants those management, sales and customer service openings.

During my decades of headhunting I never found a DME sales rep or manager that the client couldn't have found on their own had they simply networked a little. In fact, on several occasions I was paid 5 figures for "finding" candidates the employer already knew. 

To find such passive candidates all they need is a free Linkedin account and the willingness to learn how to use it.
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