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Is TikTok a useful tool in the hunt for young talent?

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While 94% of recruiters use social media for their jobs, only 39% of all employers use social media for recruiting and hiring.

This is up from 37% the year before, according to the website careerbuilder.com.

Among these social media channels is TikTok, which has recently seen people begin using video ‘TikTok CVs' to apply for jobs.


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Rafe Gomez, co-owner of VC Inc Marketing, has set up a channel dedicated to advising young people on how to craft their applications under SalesStrategy2GetHired.

Speaking to HR magazine, he said TikTok is a tool like any other, and that employers should not be fooled by flashy editing or other gimmicks.

“TikTok résumés are one more tool in the toolbox,” Gomez said.

“HR managers need to be as discriminating as they are with experienced employees who have spent time in the workforce. 

They cannot assume that, because younger people are savvy about the newest social media tool, that therefore equates to the ability to make results possible.”

The tag #careersadvice was trending on TikTok earlier this year, with more than 80 million views by mid-February 2021, and the largest single proportion of adult TikTok users is the 18-24 demographic, who make up a quarter (26%) of the user base.

He added: “Candidates should prove they can make the company money, save it money, or improve its image within the marketplace – and that’s what I tell them.”

This wide pool means there is plenty of talent to find.

“It’s like football,” Gomez said. “The great teams try to find the unpolished talent that’s just exploding with possibility. They know that if they get them into their programme, they’ll flourish. 

“Businesses should have the same approach. No they don’t have the on the job skills, they have not worked for an organisation. 

“But if they come in, showing they’ve done the research, they know how to look at a scenario and identify the strengths and weaknesses, and understand what an organisation is trying to achieve – if that organisation is smart, they’ll get on board.”

Raw talent may be the only young talent out there right now, according to Ben Shepherd, managing director of Savvy Media & Digital Recruiter. 

He told HR magazine: “You could call them the lost generation, the COVID generation. Those people that would have been starting their first job have not been able to. 

“They’ve essentially been locked at home when they would have been starting their first job, and I’m seeing a gap in the marketplace of talent where those people who would probably be on their second job right now – there’s just nobody out there.

Shepherd said that the development opportunities afforded by rubbing shoulders with more experienced colleagues have simply not been there.

“Those fortunate enough to have got a job in the past 12 to 24 months are more than likely to have done it from home, which has set them back massively,” he added. 

“There’s a real shortage of skill sets within those first few jobs.”