In today’s highly digital world, social media not only affects how we personally interact with others but also professionally. The executive recruiting industry has witnessed a shift in the market as social media has become a game changer in recruiting efforts. With the ability to like, follow, friend and share information instantly, social media provides a revolutionary avenue to reach potential candidates.

No longer tied to traditional means of sourcing candidates, recruiters in the digital age are more likely mining social media sites to attract, engage and recruit top talent. As Managing Partner of the Chicago Information Technology practice group, I enjoy staying abreast of the top trends in social media recruiting, particularly in regard to LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. Of the “big three,” my social network of choice is LinkedIn. According to Forbes, “LinkedIn remains the top social media site for business executives (directors and above).” To reach these executives, I spend my commute time on the “L” reviewing candidate profiles on LinkedIn and sending personalized connection requests.

In addition to LinkedIn, I’ve witnessed the momentum that Twitter has gained when it comes to recruiting and the job search. Several cutting-edge corporations are using Twitter’s 140 characters to attract candidates. According to CNN, “Twitter resumes — or ‘twesumes’– have been touted as the best way for social media-savvy types to snag a dream job.” But before you ditch the idea of a traditional paper resume, make sure that having candidates apply via social media will attract the type of talent that you are seeking.

Social media is a great tool for helping you find the game changers you need to enhance your organization. But remember that at its core, successful recruiting is really about relationship-building and establishing connections with candidates. These platforms allow for direct, immediate connections to take place in order to cultivate and foster relationships with potential candidates. And these relationships — these personal interactions– are a vital element in recruitment and placement.

If you’d like to further discuss opportunities to engage social media in recruiting efforts, I invite you to connect with me and join the conversation @Lucas_Group.