Cliff JurkiewiczMay 20, 2022
Topics: Candidate Experience

6 Ways to Personalize Your Career Site & Convert More Candidates

They used to say we were in a war on talent, but that no longer applies. Today, it’s a race to engage, and whoever can engage best will win.

Where do you stand in this race?

You could be one of the many companies at a disadvantage, with the Great Resignation putting the scale disproportionately in favor of candidates. In fact, as of February 2022, there were 11.3 million open roles and not enough talent available to fill them.

For organizations to remain competitive in the current talent landscape, they need to not only attract the best-fit candidates, but also get them interested in joining the company, to ultimately convert them into employees.

Here’s part of the challenge.

Career site visitors only spend an average of 41 seconds on the job description page, which isn’t enough time for them to connect in any meaningful way — let alone be convinced to provide contact information that allows you to build a healthy talent pipeline.

The solution? With the help of AI and automation, you can personalize the entire site experience, improve search capabilities, and leverage job description pages to ensure visitors are engaged, gain insight into their skills, and offer the best-fit open roles.

Personalizing the Career Site Experience

Imagine a stadium that seats upwards of 40,000 spectators. You’ve worked hard and spent a lot of money, time and resources on selling tickets to fill every seat. But then on the day of the game, once your guests have taken their seats, you shut off the lights and ask them to leave. This is what is currently happening on your career site.

People are visiting your job description pages for a few seconds, and only one out of six is actually joining a talent community or submitting an application. As a result, you’re losing out on key insights into their skills and what roles they may be looking for.

To solve this, a hybrid Content As A Service (CAAS) model allows you to provide a variety of information about your company, while AI personalizes the experience for each visitor — ultimately keeping them on the site longer, engaging with relevant content, and increasing their interest in multiple ways.

With these combined technologies, your career site will make each candidate feel like the experience was made just for them.

Here are six ways to leverage this model to personalize your career site:

1. Relevant Content

The career site experience can be personalized based on where the visitor is on their candidate journey. If they're new to the site and have shown interest in a role by visiting the job description page, the skills-matching machine learning can highlight other similar open roles.

The experience can be personalized even further by suggesting upcoming events or blog posts that provide well-rounded insight into what the organization has to offer, while increasing the potential candidate’s interest in applying for a role.

If the candidate has already applied, they may not be interested in seeing more job opportunities. Instead, the system can highlight content that speaks to the company’s culture and the life of its employees, like location-specific benefits, information on the company’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion programs, and community initiatives. Most importantly, this content conveys how the candidate's personal experiences and passions can be welcomed, supported, and leveraged inside the organization. This is how we create an environment of “belonging.”

Related: How to Personalize Your Career Site: Advice from a Talent Marketing Expert

2. Employee Testimonials

One of the most powerful ways to provide insight into the true employee experience in an organization is through video content. Video capture offers an easy way for internal talent to film “day in the life” video testimonials of what it’s like to work in a specific role, showing rather than telling the company’s culture in a way the site visitor is more likely to relate to.

Life Time, for example, used video to create excitement about their brand and their culture, while their employees had fun using the Video Capture tool within Phenom to record unscripted, home videos of their days working for the luxury health club. Life Time added video content to their career site pages, highlighting both corporate and club jobs, but they eventually leveraged it to revamp their DE&I page — bringing a dramatic increase in site traffic.

Related: Show, Don’t Tell: How Innovative Video Best Conveys Your Company’s Stories

3. Conversational Chatbot

Used by almost a quarter of all site visitors and rapidly growing, an AI-powered chatbot works around the clock to connect candidates to the right jobs, answer questions, and support screening and interview scheduling.

Within a year from implementing a chatbot on their site, Southwest Airlines reported one million interactions, saving them 92,000 hours of answering FAQs alone.

At Phenom, our team experienced the same success with over 70 million interactions in one year — 700,000 of which were questions from candidates. Thanks to this technology, we saw a 95% increase in leads and 40% increase in applications.

It’s also interesting to note that the Phenom Chatbot is known to gather the same amount of personalized data in only one to two visits, as compared to five to seven career site visits without a chatbot. The result? Better engagement, more data, and deeper personalization in less visits. This gets the candidate from “Hello to Hire” much faster.

4. Multiple Language Tenants

For international organizations that attract candidates from different parts of the world, a powerful CMS can provide visitors with content in their own native language while remaining faithful to your company brand.

Global Manufacturer Mars Inc, underwent a full rebrand, with the goal to transform their old site into an international destination of engaging, personalized content with first-hand employee perspectives and a smoother application process. Their 18 new sites in eight different languages rapidly improved engagement, and increased the apply-click conversion rate from 7.5% to 30%.

The coolest feature from Mars’ rebrand? Their DE&I pages. While the global page focuses on company-wide goals, local teams around the world can take advantage of the easy-to-use CMS to display the specific Associate Resource Groups (ARGs) available within that market.

5. Intelligent Search

Another key aspect of successfully helping candidates find the right job? The site’s ability to deliver relevant job results through search functionality that seeks to understand language the same way a human would.

To ensure the results are accurate and provide job seekers with relevant information to keep them engaged, a Search Score is utilized to measure the relevance of each search.

For example, if a potential candidate searches for “recruiter specialist” jobs, the system may not show them any results for “talent acquisition specialist” roles — even though they would likely be relevant. To solve this challenge, AI can identify the language being used, check the spelling, and use synonyms to provide the most relevant results.

To further improve the experience, the search results should be ranked according to what may be of most interest to the visitor. The "Link To Rank" (LTK) machine learning model uses search words and context to understand the user’s behavior — what jobs they are interested in with respect to the job title, location, experience, etc. — and optimizes the results by ranking them. According to our data, implementing this model can improve search scores by 20%, also increasing the conversion ratio by 24%.

6. Job Description Insights

Job description pages are considered the most important pages on the career site. After all, they're the beginning of most candidates’ journeys and can hold the key in sparking a relationship with great talent — potentially converting them into employees. But if a job description is too long or inaccurate, it could deter candidates from applying.

What else can employers do to ensure they’re positively influencing job seekers, outside of simply rewriting the job description?

Based on a candidate’s profile and their search history, AI can work behind the scenes to provide attention-grabbing key sentences while the visitor moves across the site — offering a glimpse into the role without the candidate having to actually visit the job description page. According to our database, this can increase conversions by 7%.

As recently as October of 2021, Google changed the rules for better SEO ranking of jobs in their "Google for Jobs" experience. It is now an expected practice to wrap relevant and recent content around the job description. No longer is the job description text enough to get great SEO rankings.

With a CMS like the one provided by Phenom, your TA team will have full control to ensure compliance with these new editorial rules, and gain confidence that the experience will resonate with candidates.

Related: Why Your Job Descriptions Are Failing – And What to Do about It

Winning the Race to Engage with AI

To stand out in today’s competitive talent market, an attractive career site alone won't cut it: candidates want to work for companies who care about them.

A truly streamlined career site powered by AI and intelligent automation will provide them a truly unique, personalized experience that is tailored to their specific skills and interests, — ultimately helping you to them into employees.

For more on how you can personalize the candidate experience, check out my session from Phenom AI Day below — or book a meeting to chat with our team!

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