Now boasting 530 million users, LinkedIn has become the go-to platform for recruiters.

And this makes sense—after all, the modern workforce uses LinkedIn to publicly display every piece of information a recruiter would need to make an informed hiring decision.  It should be every recruiter’s dream, right? However, new research shows this might not be the case.

52% of hiring managers claim that passive candidate recruitment has been less effective because recruiters on LinkedIn are all competing for the same candidates (source). 

So what does this mean for recruiters in 2018? We’re happy you asked. Today we explain the impact this will have on the recruiting industry and how this will drastically change the way you do your job. Keep reading.

LinkedIn Is Crowded

Whether you’re a professional LinkedIn recruiter or just another person with a LinkedIn profile—you’ve likely noticed an uptick in the number of recruiting messages you receive on LinkedIn. Speaking from personal experience, I now clear my inbox daily. Sometimes I read the messages, sometimes I don’t. Sometimes the messages are relevant to my experience and sometimes they’re not.

Regardless—now that I receive so many messages a day, I ignore them more often than I read them. And I’m not alone. I’ve heard this sentiment echoed among those within my personal and professional networks.

This poses a clear problem for LinkedIn recruiters. How are you supposed to compete with thousands of other recruiters to connect with the same handful of candidates? The short answer is: You can’t. Although you might get lucky once in a while, your LinkedIn recruiting efforts will become more ineffective as the platform becomes increasingly saturated with recruiters.

But, even though this paints a bleak picture for the future of LinkedIn recruiting, all is not lost. Here are a few tips and tricks you can use to continue to reach qualified candidates.

LinkedIn Recruiting Workarounds

Let’s be clear. We’re not saying LinkedIn is dead, or even dying, for that matter. What we’re saying is this: As the platform gets more crowded, it’s going to be progressively more difficult to connect with high-quality job candidates on LinkedIn.

Fortunately, we’ve found a few workarounds—

1. Instead of LikedIn recruiting, secure direct contact information.

The targeted search capabilities offered by LinkedIn are top notch. So, we say, if you’re having success, continue using LinkedIn to identify quality candidates. But, rather than reaching out to candidates directly within the platform, use their direct contact information.

Candidates are less likely to ignore a recruiting email or phone call simply because it’s less expected. Think about it: candidates aren’t inundated with recruiting emails or phone calls like they are with LinkedIn messages.

Partner with a corporate contact database or B2B data provider to research the different candidates you identify on LinkedIn. Then, reach out using their personal email or direct dial phone number.

When you use direct contact information and bypass the LinkedIn messaging system, your outreach is less likely to get lost among countless messages from other LinkedIn recruiters.

2. Rely on other, less populated channels.

This may sound like a no-brainer, but we’re going to say it anyway. If LinkedIn is too crowded, rely on platforms that are less frequented by recruiters.

This goes hand-in-hand with our first suggestion. A smaller number of recruiters use direct contact information to contact candidates – therefore, doing so makes it easier to cut through the noise. This concept applies to other channels as well. Try to use one of the following:

Other Social Channels

It’s 2018, and whether we want to admit it or not, a lot of us spend a significant amount of time using social media. Platforms like Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook offer recruiters a unique avenue through which they can connect with candidates.

This isn’t a tactic that will work in every instance, so use it sparingly. But, the next time you identify the perfect candidate on LinkedIn, try to contact them on an alternate platform. Explain that you don’t typically reach out to candidates through social media, but that you have the perfect opportunity for them. The number of positive responses you receive might surprise you.

B2B Data Companies

As mentioned in the previous section of this post, B2B data providers offer a wealth of information that recruiters can use to source more high-quality candidates. Many offer advanced search capabilities, direct contact information, and a completely different talent pool.

Networking Events

If you notice that many of your ideal candidates attend certain events, you should check them out, too. This includes networking events, career fairs, conferences, and more. If top candidates plan to attend, that’s a good indicator the event will offer an opportunity to network with a pool of qualified professionals—in person!

3. Get your employees and coworkers to do your dirty work.

You’ve heard the saying, “It’s about who you know.” And, it’s true! Employee referrals are an excellent way to secure high-quality job candidates. So, ask your employees or coworkers to leverage their personal LinkedIn networks to secure referrals for open positions.

This idea is simple. Draft a LinkedIn post advertising an open position and ask others within your company to share it from their own accounts. Not only will this help your message reach a larger audience, but qualified candidates will be more likely to respond to a message from someone they know.

Give your employees or co-workers even more incentive to share job openings by creating an employee referral program. Offer a monetary reward for every hired candidate an employee recommends.

Plus, employee referrals pay off in the long run. Consider these statistics:

  • Referred hires accept offers 15% more often than non-referred candidates (source).
  • Hired referrals perform up to 15% better than non-referred candidates (source).
  • Referred hires are 3-4x more likely to be hired than non-referral candidates (source).

Final Thoughts For LinkedIn Recruiters

Although recruiters may find it more difficult to reach candidates on LinkedIn, the platform still holds a valuable place in any B2B recruiter’s arsenal of tools. But, rather than conducting all research and outreach within the platform, you must now use other tactics and tools to support your LinkedIn recruiting efforts. And—this isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

Using a variety of tools and candidate sourcing techniques will diversify your candidate pool and make it easier for you to find high-quality candidates. Use the tactics explained above and you won’t have to constantly compete for a candidate’s attention.

If you’re struggling to reach candidates on LinkedIn, consider testing out one of our tools. The ZoomInfo Growth Acceleration Platform and our Reachout plugin allow recruiters to search and contact candidates from a very large pool of talent. Contact ZoomInfo today to learn more.

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