The last 12 months has witnessed huge transformations in the way we attract and source talent. The social landscape, in particular, has had a phenomenal impact on hiring – enabling companies to build their brand, create talent pools and reach active and passive talent, all at the click of a button.

But as the year draws to an end, what can be learnt from the past 12 months that can be implemented in the New Year to improve our recruitment processes?

In preparation for the clocks striking midnight and our renewed commitment to do better for ourselves, here’s your New Year countdown to getting the most out of social media to benefit your hiring.

10. If you manage your Twitter community effectively, you can ultimately turn followers into potential hires. Respond to questions and requests, inject some personality in to your brand, return retweets, and tweet a combination of messages.

9. With over 10 million UK members alone, LinkedIn has firmly established itself as the most popular social networking site when it comes to recruitment. Make sure your company profile is completed, post professional updates and ask clients and colleagues for recommendations.  Make the most of SEO: target key phrases and create links to your company website to help you show up in search results.

8. This year, Hubspot revealed 25 mobile marketing statistics that demonstrate just how important mobile can be to recruitment.  Whilst the technology for applying and attaching CVs is still not quite there, mobile is great for building trust and brand awareness, engaging with potential talent and providing a richer candidate experience.

7. Making history in 2012, Pinterest quickly became the fastest growing social networking site ever. It’s perfect for developing your employer brand and driving referral traffic to your website. You can pin pictures and information about your company and job openings using photos and graphics, and showcase your culture, values and employees. This gives potential candidates a visual of what it’s like to work for your company.

6. Online communities have evolved in such a way that companies looking to attract passive talent can now do so through the notion of crowdsourcing. This involves fostering innovation among social communities to outsource tasks traditionally performed by internal employees. You can also use it as a form of attraction, a platform to promote your brand, and ultimately, create a talent pool.

5. Creating a huge buzz amongst the recruitment landscape, Gamification lends itself perfectly to crowdsourcing.  The theory is that by applying the same principles that inspire people to play games, such as reward and achievement, businesses can drive deeper engagement and use this to attract and retain staff. Try it yourself – post a problem online, see who offers solutions, reward the winning idea and adopt it for the benefit of your business.

4. There are now estimated to be over 100,000,000 active blogs worldwide on platforms such as WordPress, Blogger and Tumblr.  Blogging can pay dividends in your hiring efforts as they add a ‘human touch’ to companies. By connecting with your professional community, you will become a go-to source of information in your field. And, if done correctly, this will significantly raise your profile and attract interest from potential candidates.

3. Recently, Facebook announced its new interactive job board app enabling candidates to search for vacancies by location, industry and skills, and then apply directly through the platform. But it doesn’t stop there. Close to reaching 1 billion users, Facebook has proven to be the perfect platform for sharing images and offering a visual insight into your work environment.

2. Not to be left behind, Google+ continues to cause major ripples in the social media landscape, recently rolling out 24 new features to enhance the user experience. For recruitment, its functionality, such as circles and hangouts, help us to target our messages, and because it’s owned by the search engine, Google+ will help with your SEO. 

1. Last but not least, data profiling and cloud recruiting has pushed the boundaries of what can be achieved through social media. For a business, it’s paramount they get to know their candidates motivations and passions to help align their talents to what’s possible in their company. If we deem that people are not putting on an act over social media, then the information on these sites can bring us one step closer to achieving that.

Of course, the social landscape doesn’t stop there, and the potential for it to help businesses make better assessments and more informed decisions is too hard to ignore.

Whilst it will be interesting to see how the social landscape plays out in the New Year, in the meantime, there is plenty for us to be getting to grips with and implementing to take our recruitment processes to the next level in 2013.