Tips to Finding Better Candidates: Part Two|Tips to Finding Better Candidates: Part Two

Tips to Finding Better Candidates: Part Two

In part one of a four-part series to help talent acquisition professionals find batter candidates, we looked at creating an authentic career site, having a mobile presence, treating candidates like customers and other tips to build an arsenal of marketing assets and channels.

In part two, we look at ways to refine your message (and ensure consistency across channels) to influence ideal talent you want to attract.

Establish a clear EVP, promote a consistent brand

“Why should I work for you? What do you stand for?”

An employer’s brand and employer value proposition (EVP) should answer those questions.  

Pretty much promises set in stone, EVPs articulate what employees can expect when they work for a company, from corporate values to career development. Meanwhile, your employer brand and reputation are greatly influenced by how employees view your organization and express their opinions on social media.

Public disconnects and discrepancies on either your EVP or employer brand can lead to disengagement and dissatisfaction. For example, if candidates encounter one message on your career site (“fun-loving culture”) then a contradictory trend (“cult-like environment”) on another platform, e.g., Glassdoor, your organizational credibility goes out the window.

To ensure consistency, engage your employees in your employer brand strategy as well as your EVP, securing their buy-in and regular review.

Work with hiring manager to prioritize skills

Rather than stubbornly holding out for that utterly perfect “Purple Squirrel” candidate who satisfies 12 out of 12 must-have skills, pare your list to a more reasonable number of requirements. In that spirit, also consider evaluating candidates based on growth and leadership potential or desire to advance; otherwise, you may shortchange your workforce down the road.

These trade-offs can give you a fighting chance to not only find the right candidates but also keep you from deterring potentially great candidates from applying, especially younger applicants like new grads.

Keep job titles and descriptions straightforward

Customize your job descriptions to attract specific roles, being sensitive to the values prioritized by different categories of job seekers, for example, Millennials, who typically want to know what types of projects they’ll be able to work on when they join a company.

From a nuts-and-bolts perspective, dispense with fluff job titles like “Social Media Guru” or “Coding Superstar” in favor of more direct and SEO-friendly titles like “Social Media Coordinator” or “Senior Manager, SQL Programming.”

Finally, studies show that, across the board, talent from sales pros to healthcare workers and software engineers are tempted by companies with flourishing cultures, services and products. So play up yours in job descriptions.

Cultivate employee brand ambassadors

Who knows what it’s like to work at your company better than your current employees?

Outside the office, at parties, over drinks or during dinner, your employees can’t help but talk up their workplace to family, friends and potential job candidates. By default, they promote your employer brand to the wider world.

If they’re engaged and motivated about their workplace, they’ll naturally serve as de facto internal brand ambassadors. It’s a good idea to harness and stimulate this goodwill, holding training sessions on how to promote your employer brand, especially on social media and networking sites.

Listen to feedback, respond to reviews

Based on a U.S. site survey in October 2014, 69 percent of Glassdoor users say their perception of a company improves after seeing an employer respond to a review; a whopping 90 percent find the employer perspective useful when learning about jobs and companies.

Because a company review (and an employer’s answer) on Glassdoor might be the first thing candidates see while researching companies, don’t shy away from first listening and absorbing then responding to constructive criticism or praise.

Feedback, after all, as painful as it can be to hear sometimes, can lead to positive organizational change. Large or small, an organization can leverage a Glassdoor Free Employer Account to identify key themes in its Glassdoor reviews, which can help prioritize issues to tackle or address.

Coming Next: Part 3: Nurturing Finalist Candidates

Meanwhile, for more helpful recruiting advice, download our new guide, 25 Tips to Finding Better Candidates.