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How to use LinkedIn for Recruiting?

How to use LinkedIn for recruitingWhat are the alternative approaches to use LinkedIn to seek candidates for a job opening? I know that LinkedIn offers a fee-based posting solution. Does it deliver favorable results? And, are there other ways to post on LinkedIn without paying fees?


Topic Expert
Mark Richards
Title: VP Operations and Finance
Company: VP / CFO - Private Company
(VP Operations and Finance, VP / CFO - Private Company) |

Original Question:
How to Use LinkedIn for Recruiting

There are two methods for using LinkedIn – Paid and Unpaid – for finding both active and passive job candidates.

On your LinkedIn home page, just scroll to the bottom where you will find “Recruiting Solutions”. There is a whole tutorial of the paid system. In short, you get access to expanded search functionality, ability to see full profile, Inmail rights, job posting and several tracking tools. Most important, regardless of the person’s connection status with you, you can connect with them – so now you can reach everyone on LinkedIn.

You can also pay to post a job on LinkedIn (which I’ve used), when you receive an application, you also get all of the points of contact with the candidate (common connections, groups, etc.)

Unpaid or Using a “Basic” account:
Much like your normal networking – there is ‘awareness’ and ‘targeting’ – to create a pool of potential candidates.

For Awareness, the goal is to get the network working on your behalf. This is as simple as posting updates in a few areas and takes no time to accomplish.

1. Your LinkedIn profile “I’m hiring a Controller, please see...” (with URL to job description)

2. General networking groups that may be for your industry, geographic area, or large job groups (StarJobs, etc.) – post to the “Jobs”. There type of person you seek may or may not be in the group, but people pass roles to colleagues regularly.

3. For groups that are related to HR or Talent Management, where you do not belong, ask a colleague post on your behalf to the “Jobs” tab (e.g. LinkedHR, Talent Bar, etc.).

For Targeting, the goal is to get to specific people. After defining the desired background for candidate (industry, years, specific company, etc.), then it’s a matter of using your network, LinkedIn search and specific groups.

1. For members of your network who are tied to any of the candidate criteria (company, industry, etc.), they will be more relevant network to work within

2. Use the “Company” function to find people who work a company from where you want to recruit and get a connection via your network

3. Post the job in specific groups that would cater to people that you want to recruit (e.g. FEI Indianapolis, etc.)

A few lessons to share:
The sheer volume of candidates you can reach is both your best and worst day – as you may get swamped with candidates.

1. Create a new e-mail to collect response, so you don’t bury your Inbox

2. If there are mandatory requirements, ask the candidates to add an extra page on their resume to specifically address each item – use Y/N or objective answers (# of years in healthcare). This will save you a load of time in screening.

3. Under Resources on Proformative see “Getting Started: Hiring Process – Possible Delays to Making a Decision”. Just to make sure you’ve defined everything you need in both the role and candidate.

As always, hope this helps.


Topic Expert
Cindy Kraft
Title: CFO Coach
Company: Executive Essentials
(CFO Coach, Executive Essentials) |

Rather than posting a position on Linkedin - for which you are likely to get many unqualified folks - conduct a key word search for prospective candidates that meet your requirements, and approach them directly. It's the way recruiters work ... and it's pretty effective.

Maria Marsala
Title: Financial Advisor Coach, Speaker, Author
Company: Elevating Your Business
(Financial Advisor Coach, Speaker, Author, Elevating Your Business) |

Bruce... LinkedIn back in 2003/2004 when I joined was mostly executives and recruiters. They have a very good system or recruiters would leave.. instead of paying their way.

I can tell you, now that I have a paid LI account, that I can contact 10 people a month as part of the program I'm on. Recruiters usually pay more for their LI accounts.

And you can also find people by searching on Bing or Google, too.

Vesna Davis
Title: Analyst
Company: DLC
(Analyst, DLC) |

I am a recruiter for an accounting and finance professional services firm and have been using Linked In since 2004. I have found it to be the best business networking website out there. I've had both the free account (which is very limited) as well as the recruiter account (expensive, however a very useful and effective tool for reaching many people at once).

One thing I may suggest, if you are looking to keep cost to a minimum but wish to make public any openings you may have on Linked In, is to use the social recruiting site Bullhorn Reach. You can post your job openings for free (unlimited amount) and the site will post your ads to your Linked In profile, job discussion boards of groups you belong to and all of your connections. It's the easiest way to get the word out. You can also select how frequent you want Bullhorn to automatically repost your job opening; every 3 days, 5 days, once a week, etc. It does all the work for me.

Bullhorn will also post (and auto-repost) your ads to aggregate job sites like Simply Hired, Trovit and Indeed. It's a recruiter's best friend!

Another Social recruiting website is Zip Recruiter. For only $99 a month, I have 10 job postings and can post (and auto-repost) my openings to over 20 aggregate job search sites, Linked In, Craig's List, Monster (for an additional fee), etc.

Both of the websites save me countless hours trying to post my ads to various sites. They do it all for you. And both sites are intuitive and easy to use.

Vesna Davis
Sourcing Specialist


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