How to Use Reddit for Recruiting in 2021 - AmazingHiring

How to Use Reddit for Recruiting in 2021

Credentials: Hung Lee and Erin Mathew, a Reddit sourcing expert, had a podcast episode where they’ve discussed the ways of sourcing candidates on Reddit, the largest forum with 330 million users engaged there. We have summarized key ideas and hints on how to source on Reddit + added practical info and boolean strings for you to use.

5 min to read

Reddit is the front page of the internet with a recruiting potential

According to Alexa, Reddit is the sixth-most-popular site in the United States and the 18th worldwide. In fact, Reddit is a massive collection of moderated forums, known as subreddits, where people can share content, ask questions, discuss any issues, related to the subreddit topic. Every Redditor can create a subreddit.  

Two main advantages of Reddit:

  • There is a community about every subject.
  • Reddit community is uniquely engaged in comparison to other social networks.

Reddit is not about gaining followers, likes, and comments, it is about sharing ideas and discussions. Making huge revenues and gaining fame are not the main goals of Reddit in comparison with Facebook, Instagram, etc. You need to remember that Reddit is a tight-knit community which does not accept strangers. It’s not a quick win – you have to invest a lot of time in it and be an active Redditor yourself, so first of all, before you start posting jobs there, start with engaging with the community, commenting and sharing information.

What you need to remember is that Reddit members despise spam. The first goal of every recruitment Redditor should be the interaction with users and only after that vacancy promotion. Because if you post only vacancies, you will be banned immediately. People should trust you. Your profile has to be a 50/50 mix of recruitment and entertainment/non-recruiting content. Be a Redditor first and recruiter – second!

How do I find a candidate using Reddit?

1. Use Reddit boolean strings for candidate search

There are no profiles with detailed personal information on Reddit, so it is not that easy to evaluate a potential employee. You can know more about the location, working sphere, etc through the various communities (Chicago jobs for example). Also, you can use Reddit boolean strings which scan through the comments and index user profiles. Unfortunately, it does not cover any specific fields of profiles.

Sourcing on Reddit is much more time consuming, but the quality of candidates can be much better than in other sources because you can easily identify users’ fields of interest and expertise. On Reddit, you don’t source by the profiles, but by behavior.

If you are not familiar with how boolean search in recruiting works, we recommend checking our Sourcing hacks #2 guide.

Here is a Reddit candidate search samples:

  • React AND Node.js AND “for hire” Bay Area
  • React AND Node.js  “for hire” Bay Area 
  • React AND Node.js (“for hire” OR “looking for a job” OR “searching for a job” OR “lost my job” OR “looking for new opportunities” OR  “open to work” OR “open to new project”) (“Bay Area” OR “San Francisco” OR “California”)

Here is an example of how a complex Boolean string search gave us an immediate finding of a developer looking for a job on Reddit:

Reddit for hire developers search

2. Find relevant Reddit communities and spot candidates there

This approach is more time consuming as you won’t be knowing the exact location of the developer. However, if you’re looking for talent in the United States in general, chances of spotting the candidate from the US are much higher — since users from other countries are making the minority of those communicating on Reddit.

As we mentioned, there are plenty of communities on Reddit where, for example, software developers hang out. You can find them by searching on Reddit or even Google, e.g., check subreddits like r/developers or just google “reddit software developers”.

You are most obviously looking for a certain technology expert, so you better search for communities around those technologies where users discuss their problems. When you see a competent user who is sharing their knowledge with others, explore their profile.

Remember, that u/<name> is how you get to see the user’s profile, and you can find their other comments where they may share information on how to contact them, or their name.

developer profile sample on reddit

Proceed to the profile and check user’s posts and especially comments. This way, you’ll be able to spot user’s contact information or name or current or past company if they shared it anywhere.

If they did not but you are sure that the user is a very good specialist you might want to hire now or in the future, google their username and try to find profiles on other social networks.

reddit candidates search profiles

How to message a candidate in the best possible way?

What if you found a really great candidate but you cannot get their contacts in any other way except for contacting them on Reddit?

The nature of Reddit is an honest type of approach — most people do not expect to be scrutinized by recruiters. It is better to message a candidate using the other social platform because it is not a direct contact channel.

But there is a way to gain the trust of an employee through giving them Reddit Coins — virtual good that you can use to award exemplary posts or comments. Another valuable asset for redditors is “Karma score” — Reddit uses upvotes or downvotes as its point system.  Upvote candidate’s post and message them: “Yeah I like your post, can we talk?”.

If you’d like to know more about sourcing on Reddit, watch Brainfood Live and keep up with the latest news and updates in recruitment and the sourcing world!

Ready to start sourcing IT candidates?

AmazingHiring is an AI-based aggregator to source passive IT candidates across the web. It finds people profiles from 50+ networks like GitHub, StackOverflow, Facebook, Kaggle, etc. and provides recruiters with candidates’ professional background, contacts, social footprint. 

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