The job search is changing for the employer and the employee. Even though unemployment remains high, the market for qualified job seekers, particularly those with very technical skills, is extremely challenging.
Companies are looking at new ways to build relationships and gain the attention of the technical and qualified prospective employee. For the last few years, the focus has been on recruiting the active vs. passive job seeker, but that is no more. The reality is that every employee is active or at least they should be. Some experts are calling the new candidate type Pactive, which is Passive + Active = Pactive.
The focus is now on the job seeker, building a relationship and making a positive lasting impression so that when the job seeker begins their search, you’ll be the first they seek. So let’s talk about 3 ways HR pros can make a lasting positive impression that stands out from your recruiting competition:
1. Create An Employer Brand They Can Count On
Job seekers are becoming increasingly savvy and using tools like Glassdoor.com to educate themselves before the hiring process even begins. While you should monitor social media and other sites to learn about how you can improve the candidate experience, it’s important to build a relationship, share tips, and give your audience on social media insights into what makes you an employer of choice. The 2011 Candidate Experience Survey tells us that 50% of job seekers research the company before they apply. This means responding to tweets, following up on candidate questions on Facebook, and showcasing your fun and unique company culture that makes you, you.
2. Make It An Experience
When it comes to the interview and hiring process, the job seeker is interviewing you just as much as you are interviewing them. Pull out all the stops to make them comfortable during their encounter with a facility tour, cold beverages, answer their questions, follow up with them appropriately as well as timely, and most importantly, don’t keep them waiting.
3. Follow Up
It seems obvious, and yet experts refer to your applicant tracking system as the resume black hole. With no update as to the status of the job posting and if it has been filled or hiring has been pushed back, they are left in job search limbo. It’s like going on an awesome first date and never hearing anything back, and 90% of companies never call back. Send out emails to your applicants and work with your ATS to set up communication triggers allowing you to communicate to all applicants when a position is filled. Consider providing your job seeker 30, 60, and 90 follow up communications to keep them engaged and in the loop.
Making a positive experience for a job seeker regardless if they actually apply is simple, but not easy. In companies who are consumer facing, building a relationship is especially important as the candidate is often a customer before and after they apply and experience your company’s hiring process. How do you want to be remembered?