It’s not news that construction companies are having a hard time finding both qualified craft workers and construction professionals. The current worker shortage is very real and pushing many contractors to think differently about how they recruit for the best talent. It’s no longer good enough to just post a job opening and wait for the applications to come in. Today’s recruiting efforts are much more proactive and often centered on social networks, particularly LinkedIn which remains the leader for online job seeking and recruiting.
Does LinkedIn make sense when looking for candidates for your construction business? Absolutely! The social site includes individuals with construction experience who are controllers and CFOs, estimators, project managers, superintendents, electricians, plumbers, and more. If you’d like to include LinkedIn in your recruiting, here are a few tips to get you started:
- Get involved with LinkedIn. If you don’t already have a corporate LinkedIn page, set one up and make sure whoever does the recruiting in your company also has a personal profile. Encourage your employees to add your company to their own LinkedIn profiles. This makes it easier for them to share any job openings you post on your company page.
- Search for people who have the skill set you are looking for. For example, I searched for a construction estimator in Portland, Oregon and LinkedIn pulled up 241 individuals that have those words in their profile. You can also do more sophisticated searches for a fee with the LinkedIn Recruiter tool.
- Ask for introductions. LinkedIn shows you if anyone in your network is connected to an individual you are interested in talking with. Take advantage of the opportunity to ask your connection for an introduction first before contacting the potential job candidate. You can also send an InMail message to the potential job candidate directly from LinkedIn. However, just like face-to-face networking, it’s much easier to approach someone if you are introduced to them by someone they already know.
- Leverage your employee’s professional connections. Whenever you have a job opening ask your staff to share the position with their social networks, particularly those on LinkedIn. As added incentive, offer referral bonuses for anyone who recommends someone that gets hired for the position.
- Post job openings. You can easily post positions on LinkedIn for a fee. The feature is available by clicking on the jobs icon at the top of your company home page.
As with any social media tool, it’s best to look at LinkedIn as a way to build relationships with people, not just another job posting site. Providing information that will encourage potential employees to follow your company on LinkedIn, participating in relevant industry LinkedIn groups, and making connections through trusted employees will help you attract the individuals you want on your team.
Editor’s note: This article was originally published in 2017 and updated for relevance.