Let’s face the facts, the unemployment rate is the lowest it’s been in decades, creating a very tight talent market that over 20,000 staffing & recruiting firms (among others) are competing for.
So how does the lone staffing firm truly stand out?
After consulting with staffing experts, doing extensive research and performing a few experiments of our own, we found one truth: a strong candidate experience attracts top-tier talent.
Listed below are eight, hand-selected tips to improve candidate engagement (from marketing to application).
Tip 1: Limit the Number of Clicks to Your Job Listings Page
It shouldn’t take the help of Indiana Jones to discover your primary job listings page. Make it nearly impossible to miss the button or CTA that takes candidates to your direct job listings page. The more clicks, the less user-friendly and ultimately, the higher the chance of a bounce.
Tip 2: Experiment with Different Partner Content Networks
In most cases, staffing websites are not the primary destination for candidates, they’re typically being driven there through internet search or from a partner network. If you think about what Glassdoor, Careerbuilder and Google Jobs all have in common, it’s driving traffic to your website. The trick is figuring out which one(s) bring the most traffic and then investing in that platform.
Tip 3: Optimize Job Descriptions for SEO
The more partner networks your job posting is shared across, the greater your SEO rankings are, right? Not necessarily. Sharing across most, if not all partner networks can boost traffic, but keeping your content consistent is the key for ranking. To ensure your job listings are optimally posted, check to make sure your keywords (job title, location, etc.) are consistent across all of your job board URLs.
The example below is from a third-party job board that posted a marketing manager position in Minneapolis that uses the keywords, “Marketing, Manager, Minneapolis” in the same URL. All three of these keywords are consistent their own unique job board URL, unlocking the highest chance of achieving top search results.
Tip 4: Consistent Look and Feel Goes a Long Way
Imagine shopping for a new phone on Apple’s website. You select a phone you’re interested in but when you click on the link, it takes you to a third-party website that has an entirely different look and feel than what you’re familiar with. You question the validity of the site and feel like it’s sketchy, so you bounce.
In today’s era of ever-increasing cyber security attacks, it’s critical to provide a consistent look and feel across your entire web presence to build trust. Within your primary job board, ensure a consistent experience from that of your website. Include the same iconography, style and quality to offer an engaging candidate experience.
Tip 5: Mobile–Friendly
With 85% of candidates using mobile devices to apply for jobs, make sure your website is mobile–friendly for an easy way to improve candidate engagement. To determine how mobile-friendly your website is, simply plug your URL into this handy (and free) mobile-friendly test from Google for an instant answer.
Tip 6: Include Social Profiles for Added Ease of Application
Social sites like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter are essentially additional landing pages for your job posting where you get to control the narrative and experience. Additionally, simply having the ability to share a job description socially offers increased exposure. Consider the following situation:
A Software Engineer is passively looking for a new opportunity and runs across your Software Engineer position. After reading the description, he decides it’s not the right fit. However, having spent his entire career in technology, he knows of friends and colleagues who may be interested. With one click of a social share button, the candidate can instantly share it to their social network or privately send the link via smartphone to their friend(s).
Tip 7: Simplify the Form Fields, the Less, the Better
Form fields are great for capturing information, qualifying candidates and much more but they do come with a weakness, bounce rate. In general, the more form fields, the higher the bounce rate. It’s generally accepted that three or less form fields offers the best chance of a low bounce rate but it’s often not practical for staffing firms who are trying to capture pertinent information for their ATS.
The trick is engaging candidates. Look at your current form fields and determine what is not necessary and what is. What form field(s) would cause a candidate to leave? Can you still capture the information you need without it? If it’s not required, get rid of it. If you’re up for it, try running A/B tests to see what your magic number of forms is.
Tip 8: Keep the Entire Application Process to less than 90 Seconds
After conducting some experiments, we found the longer it takes an applicant to get through the application process, the higher the chance they bounce. For the best chance of success, keep your entire application process to less than 90 seconds.
Written by: Mitch Rudolph a content marketer with nearly a decade of experience creating thought-leadership content for a wide variety of industries. He enjoys pina coladas (only in the rain) and all things Star Wars.
About Avionté: Avionté is a leader in enterprise staffing and recruiting software solutions, offering innovative end-to-end staffing solutions to over 900 customers and 25,000 users throughout the U.S. and Canada. Avionté delivers a robust platform for clerical, light industrial, IT and professional staffing firms to maximize profits and boost productivity.