Posts Tagged ‘twitter’

Innovation, recruitment evolution and Vanilla Ice

Friday, February 28th, 2014
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Stop, collaborate and listen.

When we think about top innovators or evolutionary theorists, we may think of the likes of Charles Darwin or Steve Jobs- well, Google certainly does anyway.

Innovation can come in all shapes and sizes

Innovation can come in all shapes and sizes

But really, who could be more inspiring than that guy with the oddly trimmed goatee and a sensational 90’s one-time rap hit?

Maybe a more seasoned recruiter would give a better example, but, as a “recroobie”, I look to Vanilla Ice for my innovation inspiration.

Innovative thinking allows us to progress, respond to competition and develop unique selling points. These are all important elements within the world of recruitment. And what better way to get those results than stopping, collaborating and listening?

Innovation, like evolution, should be a force and not a process. Ideas bind us together, they mutate and they spread.  Stopping is the catalyst that allows us to act out of curiosity and begin to collaborate.

Here at PPS we are always looking for new ways to interact with candidates and create the highest response rate possible for our clients.

Our Thames Water Graduate recruitment team were able to do just that by collaborating with our  marketing team to create a truly unique and innovative recruitment experience.

Through sharing, listening and maintaining a strong focus on success we were able to host an extremely fruitful Twitter Q&A session with prospective applicants (search #AskTWGrads on Twitter to see for yourselves). This not only allowed us to interact with candidates in an entirely new way, it also increased Thames Water’s follower count,  encouraged an influx of applications and enhanced Thames Water’s employer brand.

Vanilla Ice could be an unlikely source of inspiration in the recruitment world

Vanilla Ice could be an unlikely source of inspiration in the recruitment world

Innovation allows us to attain the seemingly impossible. In an industry thriving on change and flourishing at such a rapid rate, we need to keep up.

With that in mind, how can one recruiter effectively prep 15 candidates for an assessment centre in under 1 hour? Well, by implementing something as easy as a conference call – which we did.

It’s a little bit like Queen and David Bowie creeping in at the beginning of ‘Ice Ice Baby’. We need to utilise what we have in order to revolutionise the way we think.

We are constantly looking to evolve – and within this industry, we need to stop, collaborate and listen in order to achieve that.

Recruitment will always be growing and developing. And will it ever stop? Yo- I don’t know.

How do you develop and innovate your recruitment processes? Comment below, tweet us, chat to us on our LinkedIn page – we would love to hear from you!

Hannah RWritten by Hannah Ratcliff, Graduate Recruiter at PPS

Find PPS on Twitter and LinkedIn


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GUEST BLOG: Using social media as a listening tool

Friday, November 15th, 2013
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So much has already been said about social media, talk of how it’s revolutionizing the way we interact, communicate and broadcast – is there anything else to add? In my opinion, something is always overlooked and it’s something really simple in this case – the real key to making the most of social media is listening.

What's that? Using social media as a listening tool?

What’s that? Using social media as a listening tool?

Let me be clear here, I don’t mean spying. I mean, using social media as your benchmark and monitoring tool. Twitter is simply a global chat room where people share thoughts – 500 million tweets / thoughts are shared daily to be exact – so you can bet someone has already been tweeting about you and sharing  their thoughts . I urge you to use Twitter to tap in and gain authentic, straight ‘from the horse’s mouth’ feedback from candidates – and hear how you stack up.

Do you honestly know how your recruitment process – and recruitment brand – feels like from a jobseekers perspective? On paper, you might be hitting your targets and deadlines – but have you lost something in pursuit of that? How aware are you? Do you know what are your competitors doing, saying? Do you know how you compare?

Its time to lift your chin up from your desk and take a listen to what’s going on.

Why listening is important

Social media has given everyone a public voice. Take me for instance – if something goes wrong with a product or service I’ve bought – the first place I go to share my thoughts  is social media. I want my followers to know what happened to me so that they have insight when making similar decisions themselves. And this applies to recruitment also.

Some scary stats

So there’s a lot to discuss and improve!

Don’t be fooled into thinking it’s just the direct tweets to your account or @ mentions you need to look out for. Search Twitter for your company name, graduate programme and even industry. Listen, engage, and respond to your audience. Who’s talking about you, what do they need and how can you help? You might even find positive feedback about what you do – wouldn’t that be nice to share?

The search function on Twitter is a useful way to key into what's being said about your business

The search function on Twitter is a useful way to key into what’s being said about your business

Since it’s impossible to be everywhere at once, there are an abundance of options for keeping track such as, Google Analytics, Facebook Insights, and a useful tool called Twitonomy. You can set these up to create weekly reports, allowing to you to keep your finger on the pulse.

So, what do you do once you’ve listened? It’s entirely up to you.

If you’re the proactive type, look for trends in the mentions. There may be something you can easily fix – a website error or ATS glitch. If it is something that needs more time and effort – get the experts in – but you can still respond to show the candidate you’ve listened. In turn, these improvements will help to change your perception on social media.

Can you afford not to listen?

Blog by Kat Fox, owner of Peters-Fox consultancy and employer brand & candidate experience warrior.

Connect with Kat on LinkedIn

Visit the Peters-Fox website

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Using Micro-Videos in Recruitment

Friday, July 12th, 2013
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pps micro video

One of PPS’s Micro Videos on Twitter

The use of videos in recruitment is no longer new. Every day, I come across companies who populate their websites with fun, quirky and professional videos to present their organisation in a positive light.

Video is having a makeover. This week, I was shown the new Instagram ‘micro video’ feature by none other than an eight year old relative, and the potential for this feature in recruitment is sky high.

Long gone are the days  where one had to endure 20 minutes of a company’s desks, stationary and zooms into the office plant. Now, snippet videos (up to one minute long) are influxing Twitter and Instagram feeds.

Simply by attaching a micro video to your company’s tweets or using them in a blog, it can produce several benefits.

So, why use micro-videos?

1)      No cost involved

Want to showcase your company’s expertise, but don’t have the time to create a whitepaper or the capital to produce professional videos? It’s simple. You can create micro videos by using your smartphone and a free Instagram or Vine account.

2)      Useful content on your site

Because they are so quick and easy to make, they can be easily created and updated. Also, the length means that the likelihood of people watching them increases as well – a win, win situation.

3)      Your brand image – improves!

These videos are not meant to look professional – they are an unedited snippet into the daily life of your office. So, by using them you create a presentation of your company that is truly authentic.

What website should you use?

Instagram have a new feature where you can instantly create videos. However, I prefer Vine – this allows you to pause filming and to restart at any point, so you can create a more dynamic piece of media.

Why not add a ‘daily tip’ to your twitter feed through the use of micro videos, or show off an event or a snippet of your office life in real time?

What do you think? Will you be using micro-videos?

Tell us your thoughts!

yammaWritten by Hannah Adkins, Marketing Executive at PPS Works.

Find Hannah on LinkedIn

Find Hannah on Twitter

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Candidate #2: Social Media and its Future in Graduate Recruitment

Tuesday, February 28th, 2012
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Editor’s note: The following post was submitted as part of our recruitment process for our new Graduate Marketing Assistant. With freedom over subject, style and length, it was up to our candidates to present their thoughts in a way that embodied the PPS blog whilst giving us an insight into their marketing genius. This by no means is the deciding factor, but if you like what you read, comment and share – you would be helping a great candidate out! So without further ado, here’s Candidate #2′s offering:

Social media is becoming more and more a part of modern life. People are logging in to sites such Facebook and Twitter on a daily basis. In fact, within the 18-25 age range, it would seem unusual now for people not to have a social media presence. It is no surprise therefore that recruiters are using these market changes to their advantage, or at least dipping their toes in the water to see what potential these platforms may offer. This new movement has even got its own label – ‘social recruiting’.


New graduates are one of the key targets for this type of recruitment. Recruiters go to where the potential talent is, and currently there is no bigger potential talent pool of graduates than on Facebook. With around 850 million users, it would seem silly to ignore it. A recent survey by showed that 84% of students make Facebook their first port of call every morning.

So the question for recruiters is; how can Facebook be used in the most effective way? Some large companies have set up special pages just for people interested in, or entering their graduate application process. A former colleague of mine and recent graduate from the University of Durham, Emma Hawkins, recently ‘liked’ Barclays Graduates’ Facebook page: ‘I had reached the assessment centre stage and read in a forum that I may pick up some useful information by speaking to current graduates on the FB page’ says Emma, ‘I have found the majority of marketing I have encountered as regard graduate schemes has not been through social media though, but via events such as recruitment fairs’. She also noted how some companies, such as PWC, seem to have invested a lot of money in these types of events: ‘I went to a meal fully paid for by the company, having not even applied at that point!’

Emma also believes social media was not the most useful method of finding out about graduate jobs initially. She says, ‘I found it more useful as a resource once the application process had begun. It was a good way of researching into the companies and the schemes further. I still see Facebook as a social tool, not yet something that is used for professional matters or job hunting’. There is a good chance Emma’s experience has been echoed by thousands of graduates across the UK.

Facebook has its limitations. It does not allow users to tailor what job alerts they receive in the same way as, say, email alerts from a recruiter. Users can specify that they want to receive information about ‘Sales jobs in Hull’, and only those relevant will appear in their inbox. Facebook cannot be manipulated in the same way at this point, leading to potential problems. It seems that recruiters may have realised this and are using Facebook in alternative ways. Some are using it to post tips on the likes of writing a CV or how to prepare for an interview. This is the sort of information a job seeker would be interested in and it helps build a relationship between the recruiter and the potential applicant. One well known job website used the idea ’12 days of how to get a graduate job’ on their Facebook page on the lead up to Christmas.


Twitter offers up a whole new set of challenges. Posts from recruiters can be lost in a busy twitterfeed, yet users would generally be more accepting towards multiple posts of the same job and posts of less specific interest. Twitter also offers up new opportunities to be creative. By aiming tweets ‘@’ specific people/organisations, job hunters can get themselves directly in front of their desired audience. A friend of mine recently secured himself an internship at BAFTA by creating a video of himself showcasing his video editing skills and tweeting it directly to the HR team at BAFTA. The video CV seems to be a growing trend, as discussed in a PPS Blog post from August 2011.

LinkedIn is perhaps better known for being used by both recruiters and job hunters. However it is currently better populated by slightly older demographics and is still to truly take off in the graduate community.

The Future

The ‘return on investment’ question is still unclear on using social media at this early stage, but evidence certainly seems to suggest that Social Media is offering new and interesting channels that will continue to be more and more a part of recruiters’ plans as we move into the future – both for graduates and the wider job seeking community.

What do you think? Should social media be a recruiting priority, does it depend on the platform, or is it down to how it is being used? Let us know your thoughts.

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Candidate #1: Social Media – why should you use it to market your business?

Tuesday, February 28th, 2012
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Editor’s note: The following post was submitted as part of our recruitment process for our new Graduate Marketing Assistant. With freedom over subject, style and length, it was up to our candidates to present their thoughts in a way that embodied the PPS blog whilst giving us an insight into their marketing genius. This by no means is the deciding factor, but if you like what you read, comment and share – you would be helping a great candidate out! So without further ado, here’s Candidate #1′s offering:

Social Media – why should you use it to market your business?

With the phrases: ‘I’ll tweet you…I’ll facebook you’ becoming ever more popular than ‘I’ll call you’, the way we connect and – more poignantly – the way we think has been drastically changed due to the invention of social media.

From the 8 year old technological whizz to the 80 year old Facebook addict, social networking and social media is a worldwide ageless phenomenon. It brings together a world of 196 countries and it does this in the blink of a winky-faced emoticon.

But how can social media help market your business? And why should it be so important?

This can be broadly sectioned into three conveniently alliterated words: image, impact and investment.

Image: Your company’s image is of huge importance to both existing and prospective customers. A company that embraces new media will give it a technological presence; it will be seen as state-of-the-art, intuitive and modern. A good website and a clean, updated Facebook/Twitter account will streamline your brand’s message, creating a consistently professional image online.

Using social media will also increase a company’s trustworthiness. A company that can interact and ‘chat’ with its customers on a friendly basis is a company that people can rely upon.

Impact: A company’s impact can be dramatically improved with the use of social media. Even the smallest of businesses can become a worldwide name through effective online marketing.

An example of this is the frustratingly addictive iPhone game, Angry Birds.

In May 2011, Angry Birds (and T-Mobile) created a life-size version of the iPhone game in Barcelona.  Pedestrians were able to play the game on a smart phone and watch the action in real life.

But more impressively, this stunt proved bigger than Barcelona when a video of the event became a viral hit. Social media made a stunt that happened in Spain become a world-wide talking point – just through an upload of a video. No costly television advertisement necessary.

Another aspect of ‘impact’ is the value of customer responses. If your business brings out a new product or has a new idea, social media can provide a free marketing research platform in which customers can interact and discuss your plans, thus measure the impact of your plans from the feedback of real customers.

Social media marketing allows you to discover your customers’ preferences so that any actions can be based on what your customers want. By asking their opinions, you build up your public image through interaction and by knowing their preferences, it is far easier for you to enhance your products and plan your marketing campaigns effectively.

Investment: Social media can take up your company’s valuable resources. But the perks of social media show that it is a worthwhile investment for your company.

What do you have to invest?

Social media is not a one-trick pony; you cannot leave a page once it has been set up to fall into the depths of the neglected internet. Social media needs resources in the form of people power.

Ideally, your social media accounts should be updated at least once a week. Customers should not feel inundated with updates as this may force them to remove you from their feeds. However, a continuous presence is important to keep customer focus.

Financially, social media is free, however you may want to invest in improving the look of your site through liaising with IT Services. Facebook can be used as a blank canvas for companies. You can now create anything from buttons to interactive games which all help to further increase your brand’s technological image as well as create a consistent brand ethos between social media and your business’s website.

Although one may consider the artsy stuff not necessary, it is always worth investing in the aesthetics of your social media.

So, what is the verdict?

Social media is a growingly important marketing tool for companies. If used effectively, businesses can gain copious amounts from its usage.  Social media marketing can be used to increase customer feedback, revenue and the image of even the most discreet of businesses.

The question is: why would you not use social media to market your business?

What are your thoughts? Do you think that social media has a place in marketing? Comment and share!

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The future of recruitment?

Wednesday, December 14th, 2011
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The world of recruitment is ever-changing. With tough times in today’s employment market, job-seekers and employers are often both on the hunt for the ‘perfect fit’ for many months. With employers beginning to introduce alternative and innovative ways to recruit future leaders into their businesses, what does the future of recruitment look like for those seeking employment?

One recent trend is the video resume. Job applicants are choosing to record themselves discussing their qualifications and sending their video to employers instead of or as a compliment to a traditional paper resume.  Recording a video resume allows you make a human connection with a hiring manager before you have even been invited in for an interview. 

And in today’s tough job market, adding a personal touch to your skills and capabilities is an important way of distinguishing yourself from the competition. Businesses are also tapping into this new venture. A company called ‘Meet the Real ME’ is looking to put 28 video booths into 28 UK Universities for students to make their videos for employers. The video resume however, may not work as well for some professional services such as accountancy or banking as it would for creative industries such as marketing or web design. Consequently, there may still be a few years before it becomes a regular part of the recruitment process.

Twitter and Facebook are becoming more and more popular outlets to engage with your potential future employer. For candidates in the selection processes for companies such as Halfords or Reckitt Benckiser can receive updates and tips on how their graduate programmes are progressing.

It is not only the sourcing aspect of the recruitment process that is undergoing a change. One of our clients is just about to embark on a campaign for 27 graduates and as part of the process on their assessment day they will be asking candidates to do a short 3 minute recorded presentation on themselves as to why they are the best person for the job. The presentations will then be watched by all the assessors on the day as part of the selection process.

So the recruitment world is changing and gathering momentum, it’s becoming more interactive, there’s a greater focus on the ‘social’ side of a recruitment process. So when applying for jobs, take a moment to consider the changes in the world of recruitment. How can you use these changes to your advantage? How can you make your application stand out? How can you make the most of the information available?

By Bernie Doody, Key Accounts Director at PPS.

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