11 Ideas to Attract Healthcare Talent on Social Media
Social media recruiting can seem like a challenge for healthcare organizations. In a highly regulated environment that values patient privacy, organizations may feel social media marketing carries too many risks to be worth the effort. But social media can deliver recruiting benefits to healthcare organizations as well as any other industry. Here’s how to do it right.
Social media isn’t meant to be a one-way discussion. Employers should find ways to host and participate in discussions with interested potential candidates who share the same interests and vision. “Curate content as an educational source with a combination of quirky scientific facts, seasonal issues, current healthcare global concerns and innovative research to increase content sharing,” says Selina Bouzzit, Brand Partnership Executive at Brand the Globe. “It’s time that healthcare facilities take lead in this conversation,” Bouzzit says.
Create Separate Pages
Dedicate some of your social media channels to jobs and career information to make it easy for people to learn more about what it’s like to work with you. CVS Health Careers is a good example of a healthcare-adjacent company that other employers can take notes from, says Michelle LeBlanc, Social Media Strategist at Industrium, a marketing, PR and advertising agency. “They share a lot of work-life balance content and conduct outreach to specific demographics. They also look to current employees to model what it means to be a part of the corporation,“ LeBlanc says.
Healthcare is sensitive in terms of regulatory requirements, but you can find ways to be warm and friendly rather than sounding like you’ve vetted posts through seven levels of legal and HR. To make your posts sound natural, establish a clear social media policy so people know what’s acceptable, then focus on creating content in a conversational way. Paul Freed, Managing Partner of executive search firm Herd Freed Hartz, recommends encouraging input from younger, social-media-savvy employees to find the right tone. He says Zoom+, which operates a network of urgent care clinics, does a good job of this.
Share Your Culture
Consider engaging your employees to create authentic short videos about why they chose your company for their career. “I think Harvard Pilgrim Health Care does a nice job, showcasing a lot of community service work they do and highlighting employee stories in photos and video across social media,” LeBlanc says.
Offer Interview Tips
Specific information about applying and interviewing can encourage applicants to take the next step. LeBlanc says Partners HealthCare integrates career-specific information effectively, including mixing tips and tricks for interviewing with other news about the company and healthcare in general. “You get a full idea of their offering in one space,” she says.
Use Visuals to Reinforce Your Message
Videos that show the care you provide to patients can give applicants a feel for the values your organization upholds. "Healthcare is a very personal profession, so imagery that shows a personal connection between the candidate and the person they're helping works well,” says Emily Ceskavich, Social Media Marketing Manager at Social-Hire.com. Think about what the candidate sees every day, and include visuals that feature employes’ hands as they interact with patients.
Share the Best Parts of the Job
Ceskavich recommends identifying the “highlight moments” of your candidates’ workplace experience. “For hospice nurses, one of those moments is seeing their patients experience joy and feel that pure, uninhibited happiness before they pass on, so we put together a Facebook post that linked to an article that hospice nurses would find interesting and heartwarming, and boosted it so we could make sure that it reached exactly the kind of people we wanted to see and engage with the content.”
The text of the post included a quote from the article about a hospice patient’s last wish to spend a day at the beach: “If that's the last smell I smell, that's a good smell." “It immediately evoked an emotional and sensory response that increased interest in the content and compelled candidates to engage,” Ceskavich says. These evocative kinds of posts that highlight job satisfaction can draw potential candidates in and encourage them to learn more about your organization.
Research and Respond
Go to Glassdoor.com and search for the position you’re hiring for, then look at reviews left by people who have held that position, recommends Adam Seabrook, Co-Founder of BetterTeam recruiting software. “Read the ‘cons’ they list, and take note of any that come up in multiple reviews. These are pain points you can address in any social media post,” Seabrook says.
For example, if you were posting a job to Facebook for nurses and found a lot of reviews from nurses saying they don’t get enough paid time off, you could start your post with something like “Looking for a nursing job with better paid time off?” This approach assumes your offerings are better than average, of course.
Boost the Signal
Use social media to cross-post information about open houses and job fairs, especially when you’re focusing on specific positions such as nurses, says Christine Del Castillo, Community Manager at Workable, which develops recruiting software. Design shareable images with dates, times and locations included in the graphic to spread the word about these events.
Use Custom Messages
When directly interacting with specific candidates on social media, write messages that are personal and show you see a future for that person at your organization, says Christina Boureaux, Senior Director of Talent Acquisition at Amedisys Inc., a home health and hospice care company. “Canned messages will drastically decrease your response rate,” she says. If the individuals aren’t interested, ask for a referral to leverage the network you’re always building, she says.
“We’re hearing about people being very successful with Facebook ads for hiring in healthcare,” Seabrook says. “For example, let’s say you were hiring in a city like Denver, Portland or Seattle, and found that your current medical staff loved the location because of the outdoor recreation opportunities. You could run ads on Facebook targeted at people in the nursing profession who also like outdoor sports and who live in areas where it’s not easy to do them.”
You can also target ads and boosted posts based on communities such as the American Health Care Association, state and national professional nurse associations, and niche websites, Ceskavich says. “Any engagement and social media response will amplify your reach in the exact market you’re looking to target.”
Take advantage of the recruiting opportunities social media provides in order to reach as many qualified candidates as possible. Used correctly, it’s a powerful tool for finding the top talent you need.