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Posts Tagged ‘Sodexo’

Social Media Recruiting Best Practices & Insight from Sodexo

Tuesday, September 17th, 2013

“So really ask those questions that are going to get them to the heart of what your brand is and then that way, when you’re ready to move on to social media, you’ll have some really good content that’s true, that’s believable, and that’s very authentic.”

Chloé Rada
Senior Marketing Manager of Talent Acquisition, Sodexo

With over a decade of experience in the marketing, branding and advertising profession, Chloé Rada is no stranger to community management and the ever-growing use of social media for corporate purposes. During DEAM12, Sodexo’s Senior Marketing Manager of Talent Acquisition sat down with me and shared her insight on the implementation of social media into the Sodexo marketing strategy and it’s use for supplementing the recruitment process. She also provided some great advice for companies trying to begin or improve their social recruiting efforts.

Nancy: How are job seekers and candidates using social media to interact, what’s the trend? How are you responding?

Chloé: I think, from my perspective, they just want to be heard, and I think they want to know there’s a real person behind the scenes. We try to clearly lay things out on our website in terms of our recruiting process and we try to utilize videos to help explain what our hiring process is, as well as how to set up a job agent or how to use our mobile app. So we’re offering a lot of tutorials and job seeker advice, and those are the types of questions that I get and that I really like answering.

Nancy: What is your advice for laying the foundation for social media? What do you have to do first in order to get through the process and get it right?

Chloé: You have to take a controlled approach. Do an analysis of your existing employees and use them, in a focus group, asking what’s most important to them in terms of their employer, what motivates them, what keeps them around. So really ask those questions that are going to get them to the heart of what your brand is and then that way, when you’re ready to move on to social media, you’ll have some really good content that’s true, that’s believable, and that’s very authentic.

Nancy: One of things I think employers are seeing is, “How do I compete in social media, what do I do to stay practiced, or to stay interesting?”

Chloé: Nowadays, content is being developed with social in mind so as a marketer, you become very purposeful in picking images that support your message and that’s unique for your organization. Lean on other departments in your organization like your Corporate Communications or Diversity and Inclusion to learn of editorial focuses, gain content and visual assets throughout the year. If you have any type of internal surveys, maybe there’s some information from those that you’re able to share externally. In terms of the makeup of your candidates, a lot of applicant tracking systems give wonderful reporting features. Poll your community, or poll your employees. I think when you ask questions, you get answers. If you don’t ask questions, you don’t get answers.

Nancy: Tell me, do you recommend having a specific careers page within social media?

Chloé: I definitely would suggest having a separate careers page because your fan base is going to be different. As a job seeker, you basically want to know, “Are there jobs and can I get hired?” So in addition to just pushing out jobs available in your organization, offer up some good advice to them too. We run a monthly recruiter series on our careers blog and it’s actually written by our recruiters. Because they’re talking to thousands of candidates every single year, they’ve got some really good advice!

Nancy: What about Pinterest? Many people say, “Ah, there’s a great decorating idea or a recipe.” How can you turn that into a career resource?

Chloé: Pinterest acts as catalog to all things career-related at Sodexo. Since Pinterest is a virtual bulletin board, it’s a great vehicle to tell our story as an employer. We do that through 23 boards, 898 pins. We have boards that will show candidates our culture and value but also use them to creatively display our jobs, offer ways to connect to with our recruitment team and share valuable job seeker tips. (Visit the Sodexo USA Careers Pinterest page)

Nancy: And how do you respond, especially on Facebook or on Twitter, when people are expecting responses?

Chloé: We receive numerous comments each day on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter and I generally respond as soon as possible and triage any specific questions about our positions to our recruiters. Our policy is to respond in less than 48 hours. By responding in a timely manner, we are letting our community know that we are listening and care about their candidate experience with us. Although we cannot speak to every single candidate who is not selected, we try to communicate through our social sites to help improve their chances of hiring success with Sodexo or with any company. (Visit the best of that advice at http://www.sodexo.jobs/job_seeker_tips/index.htm )

Thanks for the great advice Chloé! Check out her advice to job seekers in a video created for the Social Jobs Partnership or visit Sodexo’s Network With Us page to see all of its social media networks and communities.

Understanding SEO for Job Postings

Monday, July 30th, 2012

SEO or search engine optimization is not just a buzzword or fad that’s changing at any point in time. The facts are that almost every computer user frequents either Google or Bing each day, and if your websites are not being properly optimized and indexed you could be missing out on valuable traffic. Think of search engines this way: there are two stores in each city that almost everyone goes to, Wal-Mart and Target. Consider Google and Bing those two stores or online destinations. Therefore if you have a product that you want to make easily accessible to consumers you would pursue the channels that allow you to display your product in the Wal-Mart and Target inventory.

As a recruiter, your jobs are your products and Google and Bing are your Wal-Mart and Target stores. Getting your products onto the shelves of these big retailers is a very time consuming and arduous task, often times requiring a lot of investment in resources, time and money. The same can be said for ensuring your jobs are seen on Google and Bing. However, there are some free “tricks” you have at your disposal and those include SEO.

What is SEO and Why is it Important for Job Postings?

If SEO is a relatively new term to you, it’s a fairly simple concept to understand. SEO directly correlates with how your site ranks on search engines. Several different techniques can be used to make your web pages more relevant and easily read by search engine bots. Some of the most popularly used techniques include:

  • Keyword Analysis: by using Google’s keyword tool[1]* you can decipher which keywords are most relevant to what job seekers are searching for, helping you eliminate company jargon that may be only understandable internally. This tool can be especially helpful when your recruiting efforts are focusing in on location or specific job offering. For example, if your company is recruiting salespeople for open positions in Indianapolis, you would turn to Google’s keyword tool and type in the variation you were going to include in your description, ‘Indianapolis sales jobs’ perhaps, to see what the total search volume and related terms were so you could optimize your text to include the keywords that have a higher search volume.
  • SEO Content Generation: quality content engages your job seeker and helps increase the relevance of your site when it comes to search engine rankings. Therefore, when trying to generate content for your website, keep the previously searched keywords in mind to help you further advance your website. For example, Member company Sodexo, Inc. generates fresh content in their company blog through a variety of different blogging topics pertinent to the outreach goals of company. This constant dedication to updating blogs and content within the site helps keep search engines coming back to their pages for reindexing.
  • Interlinking or “Link Juice”: by interlinking pages within your site, or your .JOBS microsite with your corporate career site, you can help build relevance for your microsite and help search engines easily navigate or “crawl” your site. Interlinking, in a nutshell builds PageRank and helps your pages rise in the rankings. Member company Ryder practices this SEO technique by interlinking their military career page with their .JOBS veterans microsite, http://ryder-veterans.jobs and vice versa. This interlinking helps give their .JOBS microsite a higher PageRank and also allows search engines to see a direct connection between the two.
  • User Experience: Some things just go hand-in-hand and SEO and user experience are two of those things. Often times on the web, job seekers are bombarded with many different on-page options for navigating around their sites. However, SEO can help user experience by cutting down on the on-page links, which help to create a better usability and improved search results. The overall goal would be to place navigation buttons or links in areas that are where job seekers easily can find them which facilitates faster navigation and fewer clicks.

As an Association, DirectEmployers has made a conscious effort to include these SEO techniques into each of our websites, from .JOBS to the National Labor Exchange site US.jobs. Understanding how search engine’s view pages can help you maximize your online efforts. With little tweaks here and there, your jobs can potentially become more indexable by search engines and optimized for the results you are looking for. Take Member company IHG for example, who has seen an increase of 96% in visits and 108% increase in apply conversions. To see more examples of how companies have benefited from having a search engine optimized platform visit http://casestudy.jobs.

To learn more about setting up a microsite, contact Chris Johnson at cjohnson@directemployers.org.

[1] Update: Since the post was originally published, the Google Keyword Tool has been replaced by the Google Keyword Planner. To access this tool, you will need to create a Google AdWords account. To learn more, check out this excellent Google Keyword Planner Guide from Razor Social.

Sodexo on Talent Acquisition and Social Media

Tuesday, December 13th, 2011

Sodexo’s talent acquisition team might have been dramatically different today had Anthony Scarpino pursued his original intent of becoming a veterinarian. After changing his major to nutrition and obtaining a master’s, he became a dietitian and eventually landed a position with Sodexo.

Did you know?

Sodexo is the largest employer of dietitians in the U.S.

After a decade as food-service director, his boss approached him with an opportunity in recruitment. He has since spent his last 5 years in talent acquisition, and that is the “super abridged” version of Anthony’s passage to his current title, Senior Director for Talent Acquisition.

As Anthony explained to me, he wears a lot of hats including management of veteran outreach and employment branding in the U.S. throughout the online and social media space. Since Sodexo is so renowned in the industry for their accomplishments in social media, I wanted to know what Anthony thought about why that is and what advice he would give other companies.

Nancy: Since you’ve been with the company so long, what do you think Sodexo does really well in the area of talent acquisition?

Anthony: That’s hard – I don’t like to brag. I think our social media presence is really one of the benchmarks in our industry. I think the secret sauce of why we’re so strong in that area is we have the engagement and involvement of virtually the entire talent acquisition organization. The entire leadership team is present on Twitter, Facebook and other social media spaces.

We have somewhere around the neighborhood of 30 recruiters that are active on each of the different portals. It’s likely that our entire team is active on a site like LinkedIn. We’re able to amplify a message because we have the involvement of our entire team, whereas other organizations will have one social media manager sharing the content.

We’re also very focused on improving the diversity of our workforce and attracting the best and the brightest diverse talent to our organization, so I think we do a real strong job at that as well.


Check out some of Sodexo’s rankings and awards:

  • Named a “Best Company for Hourly Workers” by Working Mother Magazine
  • Named a “Best Company for Multicultural Women” by Working Mother Magazine
  • Named one of “The World’s Most Admired Companies” by FORTUNE
  • Named One of World’s Top 50 Green Outsourcing Suppliers
  • Ranked number three in the world among outsourcing services companies
  • Ranked #2 among “Top 50 Companies for Diversity Inclusion” by DiversityInc
  • Named One of the 2009 DiversityInc Top Ten Employers for LGBT Workers
  • Named a 2010 Straight for Equality in Business Awardee by PFLAG
  • Ranks Second on the 2009 DiversityInc Top Ten Companies for Latinos
  • Named as One of “World’s Most Ethical Companies”

Nancy: There are a lot of factors to consider when it comes to a social media strategy, including team structure, messaging and approach. What advice would you give to a company just starting in social media, or maybe has dabbled but struggling to get to the next level?

Anthony: The important thing is to realize it’s not all about you. It’s about talking with the customer, or with the candidate. The first thing that I would recommend to companies is to audit their brand online and spend some time on all of those social spaces; what’s being said about your company, who’s talking about you as an employer, who’s talking about you as a product, what things are they saying they need? Then do the same thing with your competitors. What are they saying about your competition that identifies a niche that you might be able to fill?

Then decide how best for you to participate, whether it’s one person or multiple persons.

Nancy: Lastly, how does DirectEmployers Association help you with day-to-day work and your various roles?

Anthony: Originally we were interested in DirectEmployers because of the job distribution model and the ability to get our jobs out there and attract the best talent for the future Sodexo leaders. A model that’s made by employers for employers really helps all of us as well. It’s not something that you’re going to spend an extreme amount of money on without getting results. We get great results and it’s a real cost-effective program.

DirectEmployers fills a lot of needs for me. It’s not just the job distribution, OFCCP compliance and getting our jobs out to veterans and the states, but the benefits of membership fits both my recruitment needs, as well as helping build our brand presence.

A special thank you to Anthony for participating in this interview and speaking on our social media panel at the 2011 Annual Meeting & Conference. Members can view his presentation on the Pipeline.

Recruiting, Sourcing and Hiring in 2010 (Part 6)

Wednesday, April 7th, 2010

Search Engine Optimization & Custom Landing Pages

In an April 2009 Mashable blog article, Lee Odden, CEO of TopRank Online Marketing stated, “Implementing a social media marketing program without optimizing content is leaving money on the table. Useful content (blog, video, images, audio) that cannot be discovered via search is a lost opportunity to reach an audience that is looking.”

Essential Steps

Odden goes on to list 5 SEO steps for Social Media. These include:
1. Find the audience; understand their behaviors, preferences, methods of publishing, and sharing. Most companies that are involved with the social web in the channels where their customers spend time have a good sense of where to start. Many companies are ahead of the game by tracking their audience via social media monitoring software that identifies keywords, conversations and influencers.

2. Define your objectives-The role of SEO in social media is to create discovery via search. So make sure you understand this objective when you are optimizing your videos or blog content because indirectly your social content can boost links to website content.

3. Establish a game plan – Focus on content and interaction since it is content that people discover and share.

4. Create a tactical mix – Do the homework of finding where the desired audience spends its time interacting with and sharing content. Look at keyword glossaries to find writing headlines, anchor text and twitter content.

5. Measure your goals – Goals measurement should roll up to the specific objectives. There are several social media monitoring services available.

Here is a recent blog post from Recruiter Guy “Are you measuring?”

RecruiterGuy Blog

Within the .jobs platform there will be many opportunities to create custom landing pages. This is a great opportunity to continue branding and increase search engine optimization. Let’s take a look at Sodexo.jobs.

Sodexo has a link

Sodexo's .jobs page
to special interest groups like Clinical Dietitian Community and Housekeeping Management Community among others. If you effectively locate these communities and participate, you can tap into a much more robust talent pool.

Sodexo's Networking Sites
Great job Sodexo!

For more information regarding .jobs and custom landing pages, contact our Membership Development team at 1-866-268-6206 or tom@DirectEmployers.org.

To wrap up this series, let’s sum it up in one sentence: there are many different social media outlets today and I’ve highlighted the most popular, but you really should evaluate the options and keep in mind there are some outlets that speak to niche areas that you are trying to target.

Thank you for reading our blog series on Recruiting, Sourcing and Hiring in 2010!

Recruiting, Sourcing and Hiring in 2010 (Part 5)

Tuesday, April 6th, 2010


Sodexo is a great example of engaging Followers on Twitter without spamming them. There are tweets about scholarships; links to company blogs; ReTweets of company information tweeted by other Sodexo employees and conversations with candidates and employees.

Sodexo's Twitter Page

Sodexo has 3,043 followers and they are listed 206 times.

Tweet @Sodexo

Tweet to @jimwoodsblog

There are two tools that we use and highly recommend… SocialOomph and HootSuite to manage your content. With SocialOomph, you are able to schedule tweets and track @ mentions. HootSuite allows the flexibility of tweeting articles and blogs from your toolbar.

However, be careful and research the automated tools thoroughly to avoid account suspension. Avoid sites like www.IWantFollowers.com and others that will beef up your follower numbers. Big follower numbers can take some time so the best way is to provide relevant content, cross-post your information, market your twitter account and be patient, the followers will come.

Rick Wehrle, DirectEmployers’ VP Product Development, sent me an email with ClickZ’s blog post about a new product called JobDeck -launched for recruiters to have their tweets indexed and connect with potential candidates. Check it out!

ClickZ Blog Post

Stay tuned for the final post on this topic… Search Engine Optimization & Custom Landing Pages.

Recruiting, Sourcing and Hiring in 2010 (Part 4)

Monday, April 5th, 2010


LinkedIn has quickly become a fantastic tool for recruiters. Creating specific groups and effectively managing these groups is a great way to build talent communities. A terrific example of an employer’s use of the LinkedIn company profile feature is Hewlett-Packard (HP). Here is their company profile page.

HP on LinkedIn

HP is able to display current employees, former employees, new hires, recent promotions and changes, popular profiles as well as career path for HP employees. Key statistics like top locations, common job titles, median age and gender, news and stock information are also available.

Again, fantastic job with the company profile but when I searched for an HP group for job seekers or those outside of the HP family… there were 0 results. The only result I found was a 38,000-member group for current and former employees of Hewlett-Packard but it specifically stated, “Sorry – students, customers, contractors, (and a long list of other groups that could be a terrific source of referrals) do not qualify for membership.” I understand the need/desire for an exclusive group and would not be so disappointed if there were an alternate group for everyone else. Maybe state in their description “All others please join XYZ group.” I performed specific searches on many of the Fortune 500 and found the same to be true for many of these organizations.

An exception – Citrix Virtualization Technology with over 4,500 members. This group is owned by Barry Flanagan, the Global Microsoft Alliance Evangelist at Citrix Systems. Flanagan is able to build authentic relationships with the network on the Citrix group providing great opportunities for candidates and referrals. He is also able to stay in touch with former, valued, trusted colleagues for potential future employment relationships. Citrix doesn’t want to lose touch with people who have worked successfully for or with them in the past.

LinkedIn has many groups available for job seekers, so search for these groups and become an active participant with your corporate career account. Post questions, polls and discussions as well as participate in others.

Student Section on LinkedIn

You will notice this group has 8,017 members and is owned by Patrick Crane, VP Marketing for LinkedIn. It is an “Official Group” which means it has been verified by LinkedIn.

Leader on LinkedIn

Pay attention to who owns your groups and who is listed as managers. This creates validation that it’s a legitimate group. The Official Group feature provides even more security for the job seekers to know that you are not a scammer, but a legitimate employer.

Here is a list of DirectEmployers Members utilizing company profile pages on LinkedIn that we are aware of at this time.

Advanced Technology Services, Inc.
Camber Corporation
Eaton Corporation
Ernst & Young
HCR ManorCare, Inc.
JC Penney
Mayo Clinic
Pearson Education
Teradata Corporation
Union Bank
Welch Allyn

I’m sure there are others. If your company is not listed, please let me know at nancy@directemployers.org or visit our website and complete our social media form. It’s extremely important with the launch of social media within .jobs because our Members will have the ability to provide their social media links with each of their job listings. Because .jobs platform is fully integrated with social media sites like LinkedIn, job-seekers can instantly identify which of their friends or connections are working at a particular company. Again, many candidates place much more value on what a friend says about a job than any other source.

Here is a list of DirectEmployers Members who have company groups on LinkedIn that we are aware of at this time:

DRS Technologies, Inc.
HCR ManorCare, Inc.
If your company is not listed, please let me know at nancy@directemployers.org or complete the social media form.

Stay tuned for the next post about Twitter.