The UK’s education recruitment crisis shows no signs of improving any time soon. With training shortfalls, plummeting retention rates, and worsening working conditions, the outlook is not good.

To overcome these challenges, you need to use every tool at your disposal when advertising your open positions. And as we move forward into 2020, social media could be the secret weapon that helps you attract (and retain) top teaching talent.

We see that a lot of schools are still slow to adopt social media as a full-fledged part of their recruitment campaigns. And many schools that do use it, do so ineffectively.

We’re going to show you why you should make social media a major part of your recruitment strategy – and how you can start doing so. By using these tips, you’ll be able to get the most out of the technology and easily reach more of your target market.

First, let’s look at the stats…

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Why should social media be part of your recruitment strategy?

The world of work is changing. In the past 10 (or even 5 years), the way that job seekers search for work has shifted dramatically. That’s true of all markets and industries, including the UK education sector.

To prove that point, consider these quick stats:

  • 86% of younger job seekers in the first 10 years of their career now use social media as a part of their job search
  • 45% of job seekers use their mobile devices to search for jobs at least once a day
  • 2 in 3 employees say that their current employer doesn’t (or doesn’t know how to) use social media to promote their vacancies

Every day, more and more job seekers are turning to social media to find work. But it’s not just the people that are actively looking that you’ll reach – it’s the people that are happily employed elsewhere too.

The Key Advantages of Social Media for School Recruitment Teams

We mentioned that even schools who do use social media as part of their recruitment campaigns don’t do it effectively. Many HR teams rely on the organic reach of their Facebook page to get the word out – but this approach doesn’t work too well.

The people that you’re connected with on Facebook are (most likely) parents of your pupils and members of the wider school community. So, when you post your vacancies on your school’s Facebook page, your reach is limited to those people. They might drive some interest via word-of-mouth but relying on this leaves things to chance.

Contrast that with a paid social media campaign. When you run sponsored ads on Facebook:

  • You can reach people who have never heard of your school before.
  • Viewers don’t have to be actively searching for a job by scanning the local newspaper or combing through listings on job boards like Indeed or TVER. Even if they’re happily employed elsewhere, you still have an opportunity to get your message in front of them.
  • You can direct them back towards your website, avoiding direct competition & comparisons with other schools (as would happen on a job board).
  • You can give candidates a detailed look at your school before they apply. This will help to filter out applicants who aren’t a good fit for your culture.
  • You can target specific demographics of the market, with reduced wasted ad spend and increases the likelihood your message will reach the people it matters to.

And this doesn’t just work for teaching vacancies in your school. You can also fill support roles, like we helped Reading Blue Coat School to do.

The advantages of using social media as part of your recruitment campaigns are clear. Now that we’ve covered those, let’s talk about how you can use it effectively.

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How to get more out of your social media marketing 

Running great social media recruitment campaigns is complicated. But running better ones is as easy as keeping a few key principles in mind when you’re designing and deploying your ads.

Here are three key points you can apply to your social media marketing right away:

#1: Know Your Audience

Writing a great ad (whether it’s online or offline) starts with knowing who you’re writing to.

Social media lets you reach people in places where they’re not actively looking for job opportunities, so it’s important that your message speaks to them. The better you know who you’re targeting, the better able you’ll be to create an ad that’s read and recognised… not just ignored.

Download our customer persona templates to give you a helping hand.

#2: Promote Your Culture

Creating ads that showcase vacancies is all well and good, but unless applicants are interested in your school’s culture, they’re likely to simply pass you by. It’s critical that your ads give candidates a feel for the kind of environment your school offers.

Beyond pay and professional development opportunities (both of which are important), you also need to show what your school stands for. Be clear on your values, and you’ll attract more great applicants to your open positions.

#3: Be Human

Social media advertising offers you the chance to show the human side of your school. This means:

  • You can afford to be less formal in your messaging.
  • You can get more people involved in the process (e.g. staff, not just the HR team).
  • You can show off the best side of your school, and not just your academic track record. Winning sports teams, extracurriculars, charity fundraisers – they’re all fair game.

Teachers want to work in schools that will allow them to have fun in their role, and ones that are making a difference. Social media gives you a chance to show candidates exactly why they should go for your school, so don’t neglect this aspect of applicant attraction.

If you’re having trouble working social media into your recruitment campaigns, just get in touch here – we’re always happy to help.

Zobia – recruitment

ambleglow expert

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