TA teams are working overtime to attract and hire today’s elusive talent. A key area employers can’t afford to overlook is the one place all job seekers visit to ultimately determine whether they should or shouldn’t apply — their career site.
And for today’s candidates, an attractive facade alone doesn’t cut it. In addition to a dynamic look at a company’s employer brand including video job descriptions and authentic employee testimonials, they want an experience catered to their interests, not somebody else’s. This means AI-powered personalization is critical to generate relevant job recommendations, customized content, and a seamless application process that saves them time and energy.
Anthony Prudente, former Senior Specialist of Employer Branding, Recruitment Marketing & Social at Brother International Corporation, is passionate about the topic — and it’s easy to see why. After joining forces with Phenom to transform Brother’s own career site during a successful employer rebrand, Brother experienced a 140% increase in completed job applications and a 40% increase in total job seekers.
Here are his top 10 tips to turn your career site into a talent magnet.
1. Hyper-personalize with AI
“Personalized experiences at every touchpoint is the best way to show job candidates you care about their time and individual needs,” according to Prudente. Candidates need to see value, or they won’t stick around your career site for long. What can you offer that other companies don’t?
Prudente’s list of musts include many convenient AI-fueled features that intelligent talent experience tech can provide, including hyper-targeted search capabilities, conversational chatbots, job recommendations based on a job seeker’s profile or browsing history, and actionable insights.
“Phenom’s AI is brilliant for recruitment marketing — the personalized job recommendations based on skills, interests and browsing history, the website and chatbot remembering visitors’ names — it delights candidates instead of making them feel like they’re just another number.” – Anthony Prudente
2. Focus on the right metrics
The more data the better, right? Not necessarily, says Prudente. If you don’t know what metrics you're looking at — or why — analysis paralysis can set in. To stay focused, Prudente recommends honing in on the following four metrics:
- Conversion rate: Number of site visitors who become applicants
- Time to apply: Average time all job seekers spent on the application process (whether or not they submitted a completed application)
- Job seekers: Unique visitors to your career site
- Leads: Job seekers who have identified themselves in some way, such as providing an email address
With real-time analytics, teams can not only refine career site content, but also apply data insights to optimize apply options, advertising spend, and more.
3. Let your employees do the talking
“How many times have you heard the phrase 'Our employees are our greatest asset'?” asks Prudente. Instead of resorting to cliches, his advice is to let your employees do the talking and authentically amplify your EVP.
Here are a few ways to incorporate employee testimonials on your career site:
- Headshots with quotes
- Interview-style videos
- Job description videos featuring employees
4. Simplify the application process
Remember, candidates are often applying to numerous organizations at once. Complex, repetitive processes are an immediate turn-off. Make the application journey as smooth as possible by embedding smart technology like resume parsing, social sign-in, and chatbots, which can simplify the steps and make life easier for candidates.
Another clutch feature? Hosted apply. Instead of bouncing candidates from your amazing career site to your ATS when they’re ready to apply, Phenom’s Talent Experience Management (TXM) platform can seamlessly host the entire process.
“When we decided to run the application process through Phenom, our conversion rates skyrocketed,” Prudente reveals, reporting an average application completion rate of 85% since the rebrand. In addition, completed applications from chatbot users rose from 40% to 69%.
5. Use blogs to support your EVP
Blogging can be an effective part of a holistic brand strategy when leveraged correctly — providing limitless storytelling opportunities to drive home your company’s key differentiators and employee value proposition (EVP).
“Most importantly, blogging can be a driver for meeting candidates where they are, whether that’s on social media, receiving a targeted email from you, or being funneled from a job board to one of your job postings. You can link any story from your blog to all these places,” Prudente remarks.
Showcasing different employee voices throughout the company is also a great way to elevate your company’s commitment to diversity and inclusion and support employee resource groups, if you have them.
6. Add a net promoter score
Everything seems to be working fine on your career site… or is it? You don’t know if candidates are getting the information they want and need unless you give them a chance to tell you.
Prudente recommends providing a net promoter score, or happiness calculator, that candidates can use to rate your website. Be sure to allow a comment section for feedback as well.
Incorporating a chatbot on your site can also uncover a plethora of insights that otherwise go unnoticed. Checking comments regularly can help you fix potential roadblocks and make a good candidate experience even better.
7. Provide constant communication
Reality check: returning to normalcy is still a work in progress. Don’t back off on your candidate communication — not now, not ever. Job seekers need to know about your organization’s COVID protocols, as well as its positioning on hybrid work and how it’s affecting hiring and the employee experience.
A career site with a content management system (CMS) that accommodates on-the-fly changes and puts TA teams in the drivers’ seat goes a long way. Include a notification banner on your homepage, create a landing page that details pertinent information and answers FAQs, and equip your chatbot with relevant responses to timely questions, too.
Sending email and text campaigns, and leveraging social media, are additional ways to round out omni-channel communications to ensure candidates stay informed based on their preferences. A transparent communications strategy goes a long way in building trust and saves recruiters time for the moments that actually require a more personal conversation.
8. Create a talent community
“For every job opening that is available, only one candidate is going to land the role,” reminds Prudente. Don’t let the other 99% walk away from you forever. “Creating a talent community is a great way to keep people in the loop,” engage silver medalists, and proactively source for future positions.
Through talent communities and a CRM that intelligently captures passive leads — which more than doubles the talent pool to put in front of hiring managers, he says — recruiters can nurture key relationships using email and text campaigns, and provide candidates with personalized updates on relevant job openings, hiring events, career fairs, and more.
9. Update & optimize with AI
Launching an updated career site is just one “battle” in the ongoing war for talent, says Prudente. It’s important to keep your site fresh with a modern CMS that allows you to consistently and easily add new dynamic content — and most importantly, improve hyper-personalized experiences.
According to Prudente, a trusted technology partner deep-rooted in artificial intelligence that can level up and streamline all of your talent experiences makes the difference. In addition, end-to-end solutions with real-time analytics to assess ROI and make improvements is essential.
10. Lead with humanity
The options for improving a career site can leave you wondering where to start. Prudente’s advice? Focus on humanity as your guide and make decisions based on what’s best for your people — candidates, employees, recruiters, and managers.
Tackle what makes the most sense in terms of making life easier for all these stakeholders, and you’ll find your way forward with outcomes that speak for themselves.