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Recruiting nurses through social media : effects on employer brand and attractiveness

(2017) JOURNAL OF ADVANCED NURSING . 73(11). p.2696-2708
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Abstract
Aim To investigate whether and how nurses’ exposure to a hospital’s profile on social media affects their perceptions of the hospital’s brand and attractiveness as an employer. Background Since in many places across the globe hospitals are struggling with nursing shortages, competition is rising to be perceived as an attractive employer by this target group. Organizations are increasingly using social media for recruitment, however, little is known about its effects on potential applicants’ perceptions of the organization as an employer. We thus examine whether these effects occur and rely on the media richness theory to explain the mechanisms at play. Design A between-subjects experimental design was applied. Three conditions were used: a control group, one condition that required visiting the Facebook page of a hospital and one condition that required visiting the LinkedIn page. Method The focal organization was an existing Belgian hospital which had a LinkedIn and a Facebook page. An online questionnaire was sent to nursing students and employed nurses over 5 months in 2015-2016. Results Nurses’ exposure to the hospital’s Facebook or LinkedIn page had a significant positive effect on a majority of the employer brand dimensions, both instrumental and symbolic. In addition, nurses who visited the Facebook page felt more attracted to working at the hospital. Most of these effects were mediated by social presence. Conclusion Nurses’ perceptions of employers can be positively influenced by seeing a hospital’s social media page. Hospitals can thus employ social media to improve their employer brand image and attractiveness.
Keywords
recruitment, employer branding, social media, Facebook, LinkedIn, organizational image, organizational attractiveness, nurses, hospital

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Chicago
Carpentier, Marieke, Greet Van Hoye, Sara Stockman, Eveline Schollaert, Bart Van Theemsche, and Gerd Jacobs. 2017. “Recruiting Nurses Through Social Media : Effects on Employer Brand and Attractiveness.” Journal of Advanced Nursing  73 (11): 2696–2708.
APA
Carpentier, M., Van Hoye, G., Stockman, S., Schollaert, E., Van Theemsche, B., & Jacobs, G. (2017). Recruiting nurses through social media : effects on employer brand and attractiveness. JOURNAL OF ADVANCED NURSING  , 73(11), 2696–2708.
Vancouver
1.
Carpentier M, Van Hoye G, Stockman S, Schollaert E, Van Theemsche B, Jacobs G. Recruiting nurses through social media : effects on employer brand and attractiveness. JOURNAL OF ADVANCED NURSING  . 2017;73(11):2696–708.
MLA
Carpentier, Marieke et al. “Recruiting Nurses Through Social Media : Effects on Employer Brand and Attractiveness.” JOURNAL OF ADVANCED NURSING  73.11 (2017): 2696–2708. Print.
@article{8519378,
  abstract     = {Aim
To investigate whether and how nurses’ exposure to a hospital’s profile on social media affects their perceptions of the hospital’s brand and attractiveness as an employer.
Background
Since in many places across the globe hospitals are struggling with nursing shortages, competition is rising to be perceived as an attractive employer by this target group. Organizations are increasingly using social media for recruitment, however, little is known about its effects on potential applicants’ perceptions of the organization as an employer. We thus examine whether these effects occur and rely on the media richness theory to explain the mechanisms at play.
Design
A between-subjects experimental design was applied. Three conditions were used: a control group, one condition that required visiting the Facebook page of a hospital and one condition that required visiting the LinkedIn page.
Method
The focal organization was an existing Belgian hospital which had a LinkedIn and a Facebook page. An online questionnaire was sent to nursing students and employed nurses over 5 months in 2015-2016. 
Results
Nurses’ exposure to the hospital’s Facebook or LinkedIn page had a significant positive effect on a majority of the employer brand dimensions, both instrumental and symbolic. In addition, nurses who visited the Facebook page felt more attracted to working at the hospital. Most of these effects were mediated by social presence.
Conclusion
Nurses’ perceptions of employers can be positively influenced by seeing a hospital’s social media page. Hospitals can thus employ social media to improve their employer brand image and attractiveness. 
},
  author       = {Carpentier, Marieke and Van Hoye, Greet and Stockman, Sara and Schollaert, Eveline and Van Theemsche, Bart and Jacobs, Gerd},
  issn         = {0309-2402 },
  journal      = {JOURNAL OF ADVANCED NURSING                                    },
  keywords     = {recruitment,employer branding,social media,Facebook,LinkedIn,organizational image,organizational attractiveness,nurses,hospital},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {11},
  pages        = {2696--2708},
  title        = {Recruiting nurses through social media : effects on employer brand and attractiveness},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jan.13336},
  volume       = {73},
  year         = {2017},
}

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