Saks Places ‘Help Wanted’ Sign on Facebook

Discussion
Jun 19, 2012

Typically when the topic of Facebook comes up in relation to retail, the discussion centers around its value as a marketing/customer engagement tool or whether or not it makes sense to open storefronts on the site. The luxury department store Saks Fifth Avenue is exploring another opportunity on Facebook, and this time it’s all about talent acquisition.

Yesterday, the company announced it had launched a "Careers at Saks" Facebook page designed let prospective employees learn about positions with the chain while giving them the opportunity to "interact directly" with members of its talent acquisition team. The site offers a newsfeed on careers and interviewing while highlighting "Jobs of the Day." So-called "brand ambassadors" from across Saks, including sales associates and staff from creative, marketing and IT, will discuss what it’s like to work for the employer and provide insights into various aspects of the chain’s business.

In keeping with Facebook 101, Saks is looking for "real-time responses" to commentary by applicants to add a "layer of authenticity" to the page.

"Saks Fifth Avenue looks forward to hearing stories from prospective applicants and utilizing those stories to share the Saks employment experience and attract top talent," said Christine Morena, EVP of human resources for Saks, in a statement.

Discussion Questions: What role should social media play in talent acquisition for businesses today? Do you think the “Careers at Saks” Facebook page will give the chain an advantage in recruiting talent?

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13 Comments on "Saks Places ‘Help Wanted’ Sign on Facebook"


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Gene Hoffman
Guest
Gene Hoffman
9 years 11 months ago

All companies want to hire and hold the best talent and social media is a new highway for searching. But social media is not always pure in facts or integrity. That brings with it numerous hiring challenges.

The “Careers at Saks” Facebook page will inform many people of the openings at Saks, increase applications, and expose Saks to a mountain of work ferreting through the resulting forest.

Matt Schmitt
Guest
9 years 11 months ago

Facebook certainly gives retailers another avenue to promote the brand and career opportunities. But how effective can it be for recruiting talent? Is this a good thing for potential job candidates? Mixing a person’s social sphere and activities with career is precisely why LinkedIn exists, to keep professional networking and career development as discrete areas of focus and balance.

Bill Emerson
Guest
Bill Emerson
9 years 11 months ago

A terrific idea. Gives an opportunity to not only provide a richer message than Monster.com and the other online search sites, but also allows for interaction with potential candidates.

Saks could be on to something here.

Max Goldberg
Guest
9 years 11 months ago

This is a great move on the part of Saks. It offers the retailer an opportunity to put itself in front of potential employees and allows those potential employees the chance to interact with the store and its team members. I believe this will help Saks attract employees.

As we have discussed many times on RetailWire, the real question is how Saks will treat those employees and whether they will offer a path for them to grow within the company.

J. Peter Deeb
Guest
9 years 11 months ago

I see logistics issues for any retailer utilizing Facebook for recruiting mainly in the area of high numbers and low qualifications. However, it is an opportunity to communicate initially with potential hires and showcase the benefits of working with a company. With most retailers experiencing high turnover social media is another opportunity to find good employees. If it works for Saks, it will spread quickly and potentially negate any competitive advantage.

Nikki Baird
Guest
Nikki Baird
9 years 11 months ago

It’s definitely an interesting approach. While I wonder about the mixing of personal and professional profiles that this encourages, by going after Facebook vs. LinkedIn, if this is where Saks’ prospective employees can be found, then this is where Saks needs to be. And it does seem like, at least for the younger crowd, mixing personal and professional is just going to be par for the course. I think corporations are going to have to get over it more than young people are going to have to learn more discretion.

David Zahn
Guest
9 years 11 months ago

If you are looking to acquire talent, go where they are. The talent is found there and will see Saks as being more relevant than some other competitors. Does it have challenges? Sure. Does that mean it should not be pursued? Absolutely not. Try it, modify it as needed, and improve as you go.

Brian Numainville
Guest
9 years 11 months ago

In today’s world, Facebook may be where many potential Saks employees spend time. Companies need to adjust how and where they recruit for talent rather than force employees to “come to them.” Kudos to Saks for trying this!

Cathy Hotka
Guest
9 years 11 months ago

This is an exciting experiment for Saks and an opportunity for other companies to learn from their experience. Will prospective employees go beyond the simple message or resume and send something more creative to Saks? There’s a real opportunity for applicants here to really stand out.

Lee Kent
Guest
9 years 11 months ago

My first gut reaction to this was, this is great! I love this concept as it gives Saks a chance to show their ‘personality’ to the world. I also see some of the many issues that could come up in dealing with unqualified candidates, etc. I will have to take a look at how they actually do this and report back. They could really be on to something, IMHO.

Craig Sundstrom
Guest
9 years 11 months ago

So again, how exactly is this different/better than a web site? Oh, sure, you might snag those not capable of freeing themselves from FB’s grasp, but what kind of employees would they make?

Anyway, it’s surely not an advantage as every other retailer in the world probably has such an effort underway.

Kenneth Leung
Guest
9 years 11 months ago

It really just levels them in the playing field. If they are looking for social media savvy candidates you need to go where the watering holes are. With upscale retailers like Saks who are better known among the mature upscale crowd, targeting social media for employee recruitment shows it is relevant to the millenial workforce and shoppers

Ed Rosenbaum
Guest
9 years 11 months ago

This is an astute move by Saks. Social media is the fastest highway to get the word out no matter what that ‘word” is. Now maybe things will start to improve with more information other than what we had for breakfast or what color your socks are. This could be the start of a new manner of information processing.

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