In countries like South Africa, where about 80% of the population (or 40-million) people now own a handset, cellphones have always been a powerful marketing channel. With mobile access to the internet growing, targeting talent on the go will become essential in the recruitment strategy. According to the World Wide Worx: Mobility 2012 report, about 59% (or 29.5-million) South Africans now have access to the internet in some way. Of these, 27% (or 13.5-million) exclusively access the web via their cellphones.
Mxit is by far the biggest mobile social network in this connected world, offering a low-cost instant messaging chat service with the added functionality of apps. Its 7.4-million active monthly users send 750-million messages per day. The core membership consists of South Africans between the ages of 16 and 24. On average, they spend upward of 90 minutes per day on Mxit, chatting with friends.
This makes Mxit a great place to find younger, graduate type professionals and candidates with non-specialist skills who are actively looking for jobs. The strong peer following of the huge membership base further makes it possible to engage serious volumes of candidates on this network.
Ironically, Mxit is still a heavily underutilised portal for recruitment, especially when it comes to graduate skills.
Brands are starting their relationship with young talent much earlier to be the first employers that new graduates consider — some are already engaging with school leavers. Another emerging trend is companies recruiting junior talent to shadow senior, scarce skills to replace them in time.
Mxit offers the perfect audience to find young graduate skills, with many different ways of tapping into this pool of candidates.
The first way is to connect with niche candidates in chatrooms in vertical discussions based on their interests like music, motoring or technology. Another is getting a Mxit company brand app to expose the employer brand, displaying jobs in a dedicated mobiportal that candidates can add to their contact lists. Jobs can be advertised to all members through text alerts or with full colour graphics. Companies can also create simple games for job applications that vet and score candidates.
With recruitment marketing technology, job placements can be automated from a career site to an Mxit brand app, where candidates can then apply with credits called Mxit Moola. There are also apps, built on WordPress, which makes it easy to syndicate content from a career site to a company brand app.
The only thing to be aware of is that an Mxit presence could be so successful that HR managers encounter an avalanche of applications.
Make sure the recruitment message is highly targeted and that the advert is very specific about the skills required. Ideally, also get HR technology called an applicant tracking system in place to automate the management of the job applications, pre-screen candidates and sift out the right kind of applications.
Companies need to get mobile and do so quickly, especially if they’re targeting graduate skills. With its enormous scale and loyal following, Mxit can give HR managers a very effective shortcut to a whole new marketplace.