Sometimes the simplest ideas are the ones that work the best, and “Find a Job Friday” is a phenomenon that has really caught on in RecruitMilitary’s Facebook community www.facebook.com/recruitmilitary. Here’s a Q&A with Liz Wheeler, RecruitMilitary’s social media messaging guru and the brains and the muscle behind “Find a Job Friday.”
Please tell the readers of Search & Employ®about your education and background.
I have a bachelor’s degree in political science with a minor in homeland security from Penn State University. I started working for RecruitMilitary in August 2011, and transitioned to full time in 2013. My background is a combination of politics, government, and marketing. In the spring of 2013, I co-wrote a book about being a young political activist, and I’ve served as a commissioner on the Board of Zoning Appeals in my hometown. I’ve also consulted for social marketing campaigns for several major brands.
How did you come up with the idea for “Find a Job Friday”?
When I took over social media for RecruitMilitary, I wanted to provide our social communities with access to our job-seeking resources and specific job opportunities. As our audience grew, I received more and more questions about the availability of certain types of jobs in certain locations. So I thought, “What better way to connect veterans directly with jobs they’re interested in than live-answering their requests with postings from our job board?” It’s turned out to be a huge hit!
Describe how it works.
Every Friday from 12:00 noon until 1:00 p.m. Eastern Time on the “Find a Job Friday” Facebook post, veterans can post the kind of job they’re interested in, plus the location where they want to work. I then run a search on our job board for those criteria and send back a link to opportunities that match each request…all in real-time!
Which social media sites host “Find a Job Friday”?
“Find a Job Friday” itself happens on Facebook. Sometimes we promote it on LinkedIn or Twitter.
How many responses do you usually get?
I usually receive anywhere from 65 to 150. One Friday, we received more than 300 inquiries!
Do any fields in particular have a heavy presence?
There are a lot of requests for logistics positions, law enforcement or security-related positions, and healthcare jobs – but the variety is always interesting, too. We regularly have requests for intelligence analysts, pilots, high level management, and many more.
What other specials have you run on social media – and do you have any coming up?
We recently started conducting webinars that are veteran candidate-centric. The latest one, presented at the end of March, was called “7 Tips for Veterans to Get a Job through a Career Fair.” We will be doing more of these soon, with other advice, tips, guidance, and information for veterans in their job searches. Interested veterans should stay tuned to our social media pages – listed on page 1 of Search & Employ® – for dates and topics of upcoming webinars.
How did you get into the world of social media?
Accidentally! I knew how powerful social media could be in other areas – politics, news, marketing, etc. When I started working at RecruitMilitary and saw how powerful their mission was, I knew their social media was a gold mine just waiting to be tapped. I have experience in writing, and took some courses in college on marketing and communication, and I’ve studied messaging strategies extensively.
What has been the growth of RecruitMilitary’s presence on social media since you began as social media manager?
Our Facebook audience has grown from 26,000 to 68,000 in the past 2½ years. Our Twitter presence has grown from 2,200 to 5,300. Our LinkedIn presence has grown to be nearly 5,000 – but those are just the numbers. Socially, we engage veterans and employers on a daily basis about everything from job opportunities to tips and advice; and anything related to their time in the service and their transition to a civilian career. We’re very easy to contact through our social channels, we enjoy engaging with our audience, and we know it brings great value both to them and to getting the word out about our resources.
Katie Becker is the staff writer at RecruitMilitary.