SmartRecruiters Blog

Measure the ROI of Internet Recruiting

Return on investment: that, my friends, is really what is on every senior leader’s mind when it comes to social recruiting, erecruiting, and using social media to recruit and source candidates. Often referred to as ROI, Return on investment is a measurement or metric used to measure the rates of dollar return upon a businesses’ time and money spent.  For erecruiting this could include activities like blogging, promoting content, and developing a recruiting strategy that leverages Facebook ads.

The challenge when measuring ROI when it comes to recruiting and engagement in a talent community on social media channels normally surrounds one of the following:

  • Guaranteed Success.  Social media is a relatively new medium in which to engage and recruit candidates through the process of erecruiting. While there are certainly best practices when it comes to LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, like most things in business, there are no guarantees.   
    • Effort/Time.  Unless you are a well-known brand, building your presence and reputation on social media requires a great deal of time and effort before you reap the benefits. It takes time to build a foundation.  A social media recruiting strategy is much like purchasing a home. You don’t generally make money right away.  Flipping homes requires time, capital, and sometimes blood, sweat, and tears without a 100% guarantee.  
    • Everyone is an Expert.  Or at least everyone claims to be.  Social media provides an easy entrance to experts many who have no experience in the field of recruiting, HR, or beyond a few SEO tricks.  Because social media strategies are as varied as the number of blogs throughout the internet, it’s important to research, plan, and prepare before diving into social media and recruiting.

As you begin dipping your toe into the internet recruiting waters of social media, it’s important to establish clear measurables and metrics that can support your efforts beyond the standard metrics tools and measurements like Tweet Reach and Facebook Impressions.

    • Links.  Using a tool like provides you data regarding the number of clicks to a particular url.  From here you can determine candidate conversion ratios using number of clicks/applications.  If the link is viewable on email newsletter, blogs, or other websites, a custom shortened link provides a consistent and subtle branding message that’s guaranteed to impress.
    • Surveys/Focus Groups.  As you are beginning your online recruiting efforts, spend time talking with your candidate pool.  Where are they spending their time online and what made them apply for you position versus others online?  Go beyond the standard online survey, pull up a chair, and get to know your job seekers.
    • Turnover Metrics.  While a candidate source might fill positions, the real key when developing any type of recruiting strategy is determining if the source provides quality candidates beyond time and cost to fill.  This means evaluating turnover by source metrics.  Video recruiting campaigns in my experience have always produced lower turnover than more traditional efforts because candidates are provide consistent and more information about job responsibilities and company culture.  Data from turnover metrics can help guide you where to spend your time and effort on future social media recruiting campaigns.

Internet recruiting strategies can support your already established recruiting efforts.  Like any business plan or strategy, it’s important to spend time establishing measure-ables and metrics to guide you, whether it’s by retooling your social media efforts, expanding them, or abandoning them altogether.

Photo Credit Soshable

Jessica Miller-Merrell, SPHR is a HR consultant, new media strategist, and author who writes at Blogging4Jobs. Jessica is the host of Job Search Secrets, an internet television show for job seekers.

Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell, SPHR is a HR consultant, new media strategist, and author who writes at Blogging4Jobs. Jessica is the host of Job Search Secrets, an internet television show for job seekers.