In recent weeks, it emerged that half of employers “wait for job seekers to apply to open positions.” According to CareerBuilder’s 2016 Candidate Behavior study, 52% of employers prefer that candidates come to them.
It’s a worrying statistic that suggests a lack of proactivity on the part of many employers looking to hire.
Of course, these employers might, in their defence, argue that this is the age of inbound, and, as the name suggests, doesn’t that speak to candidates taking the lead in demonstrating their interest in your organisation?
They’re not wrong, however, it’s important to realise that inbound happens in response to an initial outbound effort. In recruiting, as in life, you get what you give. If you want qualified candidates, you need to set the wheels in motion on a strategy to attract and convert those people. That means, making recruitment marketing a central process in your talent acquisition plan.
If you want to drive more traffic to your jobs and incentivise candidates to engage, taking a close look at the content you're wrapping around those jobs is essential.
The reality is, most people who visit your jobs pages aren't there to apply for a job — at least not in the first instance. 61% of job seekers now identify themselves as “passive candidates” who are open to new opportunities, and who are browsing with a view to gathering information on potential future employers, as opposed to applying imminently.
Indeed, up to 90% of those who demonstrate an interest in your company by visiting careers pages won’t apply for a job there and then. What they’re looking for is more information on what your organisation is like as an employer so they can evaluate the likelihood of it being a good fit for them.
Be sure to craft your careers content so that it paints a picture of what life in your organisation is really like. Include images of the workplace, quotes and anecdotes from existing employees, a picture of the very desk a new employee might work at, or the team he or she will join to increase your chances of attracting people who will enjoy and thrive in this kind of professional environment.
Where employers are currently missing out, is in their failure to connect and embark on an employer-brand-boosting relationship with these candidates who are “looking but not buying.”
Rather than letting these visitors fall through the cracks, seek to get more from their early interactions with your content. Embrace the principles of inbound marketing and make it easy for them to express an interest in your organisation as a potential employer.
Embedding a Clinch Talent call-to-action on your careers homepage, for example, that invites candidates to keep in touch, is an easy and effective way of collecting candidates’ email addresses and growing your talent network without asking them for the commitment of applying for a job.
Attract and repel
The same CareerBuilder study revealed that for 39% of employers, “their biggest frustration is when unqualified candidates apply for positions.”
A pet peeve for everyone in the recruiting industry, for sure.
And reason again for taking the time to focus on optimising content.
Content that is relevant and informative, that paints a truthful and accurate picture of what your organisation would be like to work for, will not only attract and resonate with a particular audience, it will also enable those who likely would not be a good fit to see that for themselves and opt-out.
As Lars Schmidt reveals in this lesson for Clinch Academy, delivering content that "repels" some candidates while attracting others is the very purpose of an effective employer brand. It leads to more qualified candidates than not entering into the hiring funnel and makes for more effective, more efficient recruiting overall.
Filter the flow
Of course, regardless of how well-crafted, how informative, or how targeted your content is, there will always be those candidates who, though wholly unqualified, will find something that justifies their decision to apply.
It's at this stage, then, that additional measures must be taken to filter them out and manage the flow of candidates entering into the hiring funnel.
The good news is, it needn’t be a laboursome task. Automated marketing tools have made the process nowadays quick and easy.
For example, Workflows in Clinch Talent allows for automated segmenting of candidate lists: when candidates enter into the system via a call-to-action, if their behaviour or attributes match the criteria set out in the rules of the conditional workflow, they will automatically be added to a dedicated list. Those who don't match up, proceed only as far as the "Candidates "All" " list.
Be proactive, not reactive
As recruitment becomes more inbound, there is plenty to be said for acknowledging the candidate’s position of power and inviting them to come to you. However, the keyword here is “inviting.” "Waiting" won't cut it. Inbound recruiting only works in response to outbound efforts having been made by talent acquisition teams in the first instance.
Embrace recruitment marketing, adopt the techniques and practices that have already proven so effective for sales and marketing teams, and you’re sure to welcome not just more candidates, but more of the right kinds of candidates, too.