Last Friday, SmashFly hosted Forrester analyst Claire Schooley for a webinar on the new role of the recruiter in talent acquisition and how to use recruitment marketing to attract more educated and qualified candidates. We received a few great questions from our attendees that we wanted to answer.
Where can you help the candidate experience that is not tied to the ATS?
Claire: The candidate experience is really before you get into the ATS. It is so critical that candidates are able to be nurtured by an organization once they contact the career site or other touch points. I think sometimes organizations are concerned about that nurture communication pre-application, but it’s very important, especially if it is a quality candidate. Features like a live chat on the career site and target email communications can help recruiters nurture visiting candidates pre-application while giving more clarity and interest in a position. Communicating with candidates ahead of time, through as many ways as possible, is key.
Chris: To us, the candidate experience is full circle, an experience that starts from a candidate’s first touchpoint all the way through a potential hire and even through employment. And every phase is important to ensuring a candidate continues on in the process.
It all starts with the initial touchpoint and attraction that brings attention to your employer brand whether it’s a candidate seeing a job ad on a job board, finding your career site via SEO, meeting your representatives at an event, getting referred to a job by an employee, engagements on social or any other brand touchpoint. How effective your messaging and employer value proposition is will dictate if a candidate opts into your CRM for future communication and/or applies for a job.
A growing trend is in this intermediate step with your CRM. Most candidates in today’s world are not ready to apply today, and it’s integral that organizations have a way for candidates to engage with companies that is not tied to a job requisition. A CRM Talent Network is a way to do that. Through personalized email campaigns and social media outreach, organizations can gather more information about the candidate, as well as nurture them, so you can determine if they are qualified and they can determine if they are interested in your organization. If done correctly, it means a candidate experience that leads to more qualified contacts turning into job applicants.
How do you attract relevant qualified candidates through Facebook? I don’t see much interaction with candidates/followers in many competitors’ recruitment.
Claire: It’s certainly not the number one way candidates are looking for careers on social. If you see the data on it, LinkedIn is the strongest. But posting other information besides jobs is important on Facebook, like for example, suggestions on how to interview. Facebook is a great channel for posting advice and tips for candidates. It’s a channel to promote content that you might not put on your career website, which might be solely focused on your company, culture and jobs. Facebook won’t be the number one way for candidate connection, but it’s a way candidates are researching and where you can provide value.
Chris: One of the biggest disconnects that I see in recruitment is the use and impact of social on recruiting results. Social is about engagement, content and sharing information. What it’s not about is call to actions. As an industry, we’ve historically measured social value in the same ways we measure job boards and our career site, but their value and strategic importance are much different. Social has influence in the decision to apply, but will rarely be the “converting” source to an application (i.e. a candidate finds a job on Twitter or Facebook and applies.)
Social channels always offer the potential for two-way communication with candidates―and there’s no ignoring that Facebook is the most used and active social channel in the world. When you want to learn more about a company or a place, many times the first place you go is their Facebook page. They are most likely gauging your company culture, who your employees are, what you guys do outside of work and what types of articles and advice you’re giving. Facebook can help you really differentiate yourself from others through messaging, videos, events, etc., because you can be more fun, more open and more creative (although we think the career site should also be all of these things!) Really, Facebook serves as an educational channel both ways: to screen potential candidates, as well as showcase your employer brand to them. But always realize the goals and how we measure the effectiveness of Facebook in recruiting should be different than how you measure the effectiveness of traditional recruiting advertising channels.
What is your recommendation regarding job postings (traditional format versus much shorter version) for companies subject to OFCCP compliance?
Claire: Every organization has certain compliance requirements that they have to meet, that’s a given. But you really need to write job postings as short and to the point as you possibly can, especially if you are viewing them from a mobile device. No one wants to see this long list of components of a job. I always think writing shorter documents is sometimes harder than longer documents, but it will really make a difference with your success. Consider what is critical to compliance and legality and the essence of the role.
Chris: To Claire’s point, compliance and legal requirements don’t mean that your job advertisements have to be boring. Yes, you need to ensure that each post has information required by compliance, but as you read your descriptions, I encourage you to answer the following three questions:
- Why is our company a great place to work? (i.e. what makes us unique and special?)
- What is the role? (i.e. what will I be doing?)
- How will it help their career? (i.e. what will the role help me learn, what skills will I develop, how will it help my career?)
If you can answer those three questions, you’ll be in a good position to convert more candidates with each job ad.
Do you have any data on how often individuals pass along a job to a friend or colleague? What is the secondary market?
Chris: Great question. Recently, we did some survey research on employee referrals. One very interesting finding was how many more referrals companies received once they expanded their referral programs past only employees to all other advocates of the organization. For companies that leveraged their FULL network, they received 28% more referrals than those that just utilized employees at the same or great quality.
There are a lot of other interesting results from the survey that can be downloaded here.