Kristina FinsethFebruary 23, 2016
Topics: Candidate Experience

Four simple ways to empower your candidates

Let's start here with a simple truth: The internet is a crowded place. Your company is competing not only with every other company that is hiring, but with the entirety of the internet itself. Candidates aren't just looking for jobs. They're doing several other things, from checking their bank account to ordering lunch to answering text messages and emails.

According to Chartbeat, the average candidate will give you 15 seconds of their time before they move on to something else. It's constantly a race against the clock. Your career site has to make a good impression on candidates right off the bat and allow them to do what they came to your career site to do: search for jobs, read job descriptions, research your company, learn about your employees and apply for open positions.

Candidates today are more sophisticated than ever before. They are also more independent. Constant access to the internet has fundamentally changed how they live their lives, and the expectation is they will to be able to find their next job on their own terms. For companies, the key is to help them find all of the information candidates require to make a properly-informed decision - and to give them a little nudge from behind the curtains when needed.

Take the best ecommerce sites as example. These sites take a passive approach by not throwing products and services in the consumer's face, but providing everything a candidate could need to find that product, all within a user-friendly interface. This approach allows shoppers to control their experience. It empowers them to make their own decision while making every resource readily available to help move along the decision-making process.

The best candidate experiences do the same thing. Instead of throwing everything at a candidate, the company learns the candidate's interests and then responds to them appropriately. This gives the candidate the feeling of total control over when, where and how they search for jobs, research companies and apply.

Talent Relationship Marketing empowers candidates to find the right job for them by creating an experience that is each of the following:

1. Convenient

You need a mobile-optimized career site. It's not a luxury item. It's a necessity. If your career site isn't convenient to a candidate at a given moment, they won't think twice about abandoning it.

The days are long gone that candidates were required to sit by a computer for hours on end, pour through job boards and apply for dozens of jobs. Some candidates may still do that, but most don't want to or expect to have to do so. Modern career sites that work seamlessly across devices give candidates the choice to perform their job search on their own terms, whether it's by sitting at their computer or on their smartphone while going about their day.

This is the majority of candidates today. 78% of users access the internet from multiple devices. It could be their desktop at work, their personal smartphone on the train or their laptop or tablet at home on the couch. Talent Relationship Marketing builds mobile-optimized career sites that empower candidates to act at their convenience.

2. Relevant

How can you not only keep candidates on your site for longer than 15 seconds, but keep them coming back for more? By treating them as individuals.

Relevant, personalized content helps build trust with the people visiting your career site, and therefore helps build relationships with them. This helps your company stay front of mind and build a positive impression.

Personalization can be as simple as job recommendations or in-house career content related to a specific position or job category, or as advanced as pulling in third-party content such as Glassdoor employee reviews and LinkedIn connections. Either way, providing candidates with relevant content helps them narrow their job search and make quicker decisions.

3. Intuitive

The best career sites treat candidates the same as ecommerce sites like treat shoppers. They create experiences that make it easy for people to find what they are looking for, whether it's a pair of shoes or a job description page.

The search function plays a large role in whether or not candidates will be able to easily navigate your site. Semantic search bars, like those found on Amazon, empower candidates to narrow their search to get results very close to what they've intended, if not exactly what they've intended.

4. Straightforward

Ultimately, candidates have to convert into applicants and potential hires. The application process remains one of the biggest hurdles organizations face in attracting candidates. After all of the work done attracting, engaging and nurturing them, it's frustrating to see them drop off during the application process.

This goes back to ecommerce best practices. Retail sites obviously rely on consumers continuing to buy their products. If the shopping cart/payment/checkout process is cumbersome, people will decide to buy elsewhere. The same goes for applications.

Lengthy, repetitive and less-than-functional application software takes power away from candidates. By giving them multiple apply options and only asking for the most critical information, your application process can empower candidates to apply instead of walking away.

Talent Relationship Marketing empowers candidates because that is the way it was built - as a candidate-centric system. By focusing on the needs and interests of candidates, organizations can improve their talent acquisition process dramatically. Empowering candidates in the previously mentioned ways are some simple but very effective ways to engage the right kinds of candidates with the hope of turning them into future employees.

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