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Why Social is important for HR

December 7, 2014


For the first time in 2 years, I did not post on HRdictionary for close to a month(and I missed it very much). For my readers who might not know, I am currently in my homeland, India, on a vacation. I met some old colleagues yesterday and while all were excited discussing and sharing their experience on social HR(most of them work in HR), I was making notes for this post (so now my friends know what was keeping me busy on  phone).

Social Media has really improved the way HR operates and performs…Isn’t it?

I started my HR career when social media in business was very limited, in fact non-existent. HR was operating behind closed cubical and job boards. HR interaction was usually limited to company employees, clients and prospective candidates during the hiring process. Of course HR contribution to business was substantial then too but it was missing recognition.

  • For employees we were just the policy makers.
  • For management we were process mediators
  • For outside people, we were the hiring and firing machines.

Thanks to Social media for transforming the face of human interactions. While social media is changing the world around us, the impact is huge in Business and HR. I truly acknowledge social media and social technology for transforming once so called “out-of-touch” HR pros into today’s open, technology savvy and connected decision makers.

Social media has improved Human Resource function by making it more

Transparent– Before you take up a new job, you can know all about the organization – employee stories, candidate experience, engagement initiatives and retention strategies via social media. Interaction is a continuous process and that’s exactly where social media makes it better. It makes it open, on-going and active process. Zappos’ initiative to hire via online talent community is a step further towards transparency of recruitment and hiring practices. It gives an opportunity to employer as well as candidates to connect understand and then select the right fit. According to SHRM study, April 2013, 77 % employers use Social media to recruit employees in 2013 as opposed to 34% in 2008. You can find the complete study here 

Communicative – The trend started with LinkedIn and now HR is using all possible social channels – Twitter, Facebook, Whatsapp, Google+ to reach out to prospective candidates, fellow HR pros, industry leaders and competitors too. HR is contributing greatly to employer branding and candidate experience by using social communication channels in an effective way. Managing a remote workforce has become possible and easier with social technology. Organizations and HR pros are promoting social networking platforms to facilitate employee collaboration, communication and engagement.

Engaging– We readily associate the term “Engagement” with employee engagement when spoken in lines with HR but social technology has redefined the term. It’s no more just conducting fun-at-work activities; now HR is embracing Big data, Analytics and Gamification to enhance their interaction and engagement and to collaborates actively with employee, prospects and other business functions. Organizations are also implementing social learning in their on-boarding, induction and learning programs. The result is lower hiring cost, lower attrition and better productivity.

For most part of my career, I have worked with remote employees and I understand how much brand awareness, talent attraction and engagement matters to an organization. Social technology has enabled HR to operate without boundaries and attain a status of business advocate. The future of social HR seems promising. What do you think?

From → Brainstorming

  1. A. was wondering why this sudden disappearance from blogging front .. But I understand and missed meeting you
    B. Its important as all the Social presence is only making HR more robust and get an excellent branding as a function. We can also refer the Hiral and other Social hiring methods which HCL has adopted

    • Thanks Anindya, vacation is over now & yes missed meeting you unfortunately but there always a next time 🙂 Thanks for quoting HCL’s social hiring practises , hoping to explore more & write about it

      • wish you and your beautiful family a very happy and prosperous new year . Lets keeping the meeting in the bucketlist for next year

  2. thanks for your enthusiastic post about social media! – focused to the “outside world”. I’m driving HR adoption to #internal SocialBusiness, which is a huge paradigm shift for most HR people.
    Transparency, connectedness, cross functional collaboration, internationallity, virtual teams, networking without disciplinary power… are great challenges and most rewarding, once in practice.
    I talk about it (and common adoption and change management) in my blog too ( )

    • Thanks Harald for your valuable feedback.. It really makes a difference.. Following your blog now for greater insight on Change management , social HR & business

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