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#IWantThatHat! A Case Study on Hashtags and Creative Twitter Recruitment

By: Debbie McGrath

Wednesday, January 01, 2014
 

Posted to HR.com by Barry Diamond, vice president, business development, Pinstripe, Inc.

I spent some time the other day exploring recruitment-related articles, blog posts and the like, specifically those related to recruiting via social media, and one story in particular jumped off of the page. Its title: Employers Take to Social Media for Recruiting. It described the Minnesota State Patrol’s fantastic recruitment campaign created using Twitter (@MnDPS_MSP). Some context:

The Minnesota State Patrol sought an effective, nontraditional to recruit high-quality, diverse talent (officers) and grow its talent pipeline. It leveraged Twitter, Facebook and even YouTube to spread organizational awareness, share testimonials about the job, and ultimately recruit the talent needed to continue protecting the law and safety of citizens on the road.

Breaking the Traditional Mold

What I see most often on Twitter from recruiters is the use of the simple hashtag #job. I’m not saying there is anything wrong with this strategy, but the State Patrol buried tradition and changed the game. It took one item unique to its uniform—the flat-billed circular hat of a patrol officer—and created a relevant, fun and unique hashtag.

Specifically, it used the hashtag #IWantThatHat to create a buzz around its Twitter account. This is a popular, tongue-in-cheek and seemingly irrelevant hashtag in terms of recruitment marketing. However, it entered the State Patrol into the consciousness of many Twitter users beyond those seeking such a position. Rather than settle for convention, it built a unique campaign around this hashtag and maximized its potential.

From its very first Tweet on June 28, 2013 until the last Tweet on July 12, it posted this hashtag 104 times on Twitter and garnered more than 200 applications—in just two weeks. Here is one example:

MN State Patrol @MnDPS_MSP: Just say no to cubicles. Become a state trooper. Apply July 1-12 at mntroooper.com #IWantThatHat.

In addition to the Twitter campaign, the State Patrol posted YouTube videos featuring officers speaking about the job, and even held live chat sessions on Facebook.

How Recruiters can Leverage this Model

Think about what makes your requisition unique. When applicable, move beyond traditional hashtags (i.e., #job). Leverage websites that compile the use of hashtags into a database; engines such as www.symplur.com (specific to health-care), www.hashtag.org and www.twubs.com enable recruiters to easily identify hashtags relevant to specific topics.

Once you have created or identified a unique/fun/relevant/nontraditional hashtag, build a customized campaign tailored to your requisition. Look into trending topics that might relate to the position for which you’re recruiting. If you’re hiring engineers, run with something fun like #Start-YourEngineers. A tacky example perhaps, but Twitter is your playground—unlock its potential. As can be seen through the State Patrol’s campaign, fun yet applicable hashtags just might garner the passive (or non-passive) talent you need to fill a demanding requisition.

Furthermore, use programs such as Tweetdeck or Hootsuite to schedule your updates in advance. Schedule multiple updates per day for a set amount of time (scheduling 4 to 7 days out is optimal); and stay consistent by branding your Twitter posts with the same hashtag for all updates.

Finally, look to your peers for successful strategies and follow their lead—as I have with the Minnesota State Patrol. As recruiters, we als want to be pioneers in our industries and build the new recruitment frontier. I can be equally effective, however, to learn from others before you pave your own path.

 

The Impact of Long-Term Care on the Employer

Posted to HR.com by Phyllis Shelton, president, LTC Consultants.

Many employers recognize that long-term care insurance (LTCI) can be “productivity insurance.” Why?

The fastest-growing cohort of the U.S. work gase comprises employees aded 55+—people in their prime caregiving years. This segment will make up one-fourth of the workforce by 2018.

Caregiving duties have the following impact on the employee and his employer:

• Repeated workday interruptions to handle medical visits and phone calls;

• Increased absenteeism and leave of work to help the ailing loved one;

• Decreased motivation and morale;

• Increased and ongoing stress, which can lead to caregiver health problems (increasing health-insurance claims as well as reducing on-the-job productivity); and

• Request for part-time work or a decision to resign altogether (adding to replacement costs).

Two-thirds of caregivers are women and 47 percent of workers in America are women. Some forward-thinking employers are starting to wonder what will happen to their productivity if a large number of female employees begin adjusting their work schedules or even drop out of the workfoce to accommodate caregiving responsibilities.

LTC Insurance

Caregivers whose family members have long-term care insurance are twice as likely to stay in the workforce as those whose family members do not. The purchase of LTCI in the workplace is the fastest growin segment of the LTCI market—from 2008 to 2010, nearly half of all new policies were purchased through employer-sponsored plans.

The advantages for employees include the opportunity to acquire LTCI at a relatively young age, when it is more affordable and health is good. It is surprising how many people in their 50s can’t qualify for LTCI. The average employee LTCI purchaser is 48.6 years old. In addition, many insurance carriers offer employees a one-time opprtunity to buy LTCI with limited or no health questions, even when employees pay 100 percent of the premium.

This “simplified underwriting” sometimes is available to spouses of employees. Plans with simplified underwriting typically don’t ask about common health issues like high blood pressure or cholesterol, and most don’t ask for height and weight. Employees report greater levels of appreciation for LTCI plans with simplified underwriting or guaranteed acceptance.

Overall, employees buying LTCI can help maintain the productivity of the workforce in several s. First, the employee has peace of mind knowing that if an unexpected and significant illness or injury should strike either the spouse or the employee, it has protection and is less likely to be a burden on children. Also, extended family members such as parents, siblings and adult children are eligible to apply for coverage with medical underwriting. Those who do so ultimately decrease the number of distractions for the employee due to the reduced need to care for an ailing family member. Finally, future generations of employees will be relieved of work distractions because family members have insured themselves through their employer.

As an employer, you also should know that while you are not required to contribute to the premium, there are tax incentives that favor employers who do contribute. MF

 


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