#HRtug Roundup: Facebook, But Also HR Vs Marketing

by Etienne Besson on 5 March 2012

in HR TweetUp Geneva,Recruitment

At last Tuesday’s HR TweetUp Geneva (#HRtug) the main topic was Facebook, but of course we also discussed many other things including why HR is behind Marketing.

Facebook: Personal Or Professional

First of all, we agreed that in Switzerland Facebook is still used mostly with friends and family, but that it has a great potential for companies.

Many people also seem uncomfortable liking or commenting on a company’s Facebook page. This probably because they think that the company will get access to their personal information. This isn’t the case, except for information that is already set as public.

Facebook Company Pages

One learning from using a company page is that visitors don’t always comment as expected. For instance, if you ask for ideas or opinions people will still post general questions about your services. But this is always a great opportunity to point them to your resources, assuming that you have articles, FAQs or other readily available information.

This reminds me of an article from Thomas Hutter’s blog (in German) where he gives Facebook tips to an online shop. One example is how the shop asked for product ideas. But when the fans started complaining about late deliveries, the company told them to stick to the topic.

@SwissRecGuy couldn’t join us but contributed to the discussion with this tweet (“Printed ads over office’s kitchen fridge give more result than FB, simple fact.”):


Don’t Always Create Content From Scratch

Another discussion point was how HR often builds silos instead of collaborating with other departments and taking advantage of what they have already developed. Often career channels focus on streaming job ads and the usual “how to apply for a job” tips instead of cross-posting to information about the company or its domain of activity.

This also reminds me of discussions I had with James Mayes (@James_Mayes) from Brave New Talent who pointed out that most companies already have articles, research papers and training materials which they could use as online content. And when you think about it, most of this content is not even confidential.

HR Lags Behind Marketing

Many Corporate HR professionals will happily agree that they’re no Sales or Marketing experts. Some may even be a bit proud about it. And this is too bad, because many HR activities could benefit from this perspective.

Recruiting is basically a sales process. And instead of deleting 50% of a job description in order to publish it as a job ad, we could first think about what our target audience actually wants to know. Making a contract offer is pure sales. And even the onboarding process can be seen from a marketing point of view where you don’t only give necessary and useful information but also want to create a positive experience for your new colleagues.

This was also a topic at #TruParis last February where Jérôme Pallas Palacio (@jobtimizer) and Arnaud Gien-Pawlicki (@gienpawlicki) led a track about “Is the recruiter a marketing professional?”.

Paid Ads For Recruitment?

Since I mentioned my upcoming post about the state of recruitment in Switzerland (now online), Haylee (@sliah) asked to have a look at the draft. What surprised her most is where I said that I didn’t know anybody in Switzerland who used paid ads for recruitment (Google AdWords, Facebook and LinkedIn ads, etc.).

Since Haylee mentioned it again on Twitter (“still leaves me a little openmouthed”), I decided to contact 50 of my LinkedIn contacts for a quick informal survey.


There are indeed some Swiss recruiters in my network who use paid ads and I will present the results in a few days.

#TruGeneva Shout Out from Jim Stroud

Of course I had to show everybody Jim Stroud’s #TruGeneva shout out on YouTube (starting at 5:05).

Recommended Links

Haylee Corfield presented her brand new blog called Social-Eyes.me. If you want to read about online marketing, social media and social recruiting from the point of view of a Marketing professional, then this blog is exactly what you need.


Other Articles You Might Enjoy


Previous post:

Next post: