Creative Ways to Reach Your Next Hire
The number of available jobs in the United States is at an all-time high, yet businesses are having a hard time filling open positions. Small businesses in our region are especially feeling the labor crunch – their customers are returning and ready to spend, yet they don’t have staff to meet the increasing need.
Whether this shortage results from employers competing with pandemic-related circumstances or other reasons, we see the challenge in finding practical, creative ways to reach potential top talent.
As a business owner, how can you find and attract employees? What can you do to grow your staff to meet your customers’ needs and provide exemplary service? The first place to start is your website and online presence.
Building Your Online Presence for Recruiting
A company’s website and online presence (social media, customer testimonials, employee reviews) are the first stops in a job seeker’s employment journey. It’s practical for job applicants to research a potential employer from behind the keyboard, especially when the job market is plentiful.
What will job seekers discover about you? If you have job openings at your business and are actively recruiting, focus your online recruitment efforts on two areas: employer brand and website user experience.
The employer brand, or who you are as a company, is communicated through the content on your website, social platforms, and crowd-sourced feedback from customers and current and former employees. How you craft job descriptions, illustrate your company culture, and what others say about your business all impact a candidate’s decision to apply.
How can you attract prospective employees through your website and social platforms?
Invite the Candidate In
A large part of your recruitment efforts on your website is inviting the candidate to “see” themselves as part of the team. How can you do this?
- Where possible, include photos and bios of your current team so candidates get a sense of who would be their colleagues.
- Highlight the company culture, mission, vision, and values – be transparent with potential employees about your company.
- Include diversity and inclusion statements to let candidates know all applicants are welcomed and encouraged to apply.
- Is your company taking a stand on corporate and social responsibility? Let your candidates know on your career page.
Give Them What They Want
With so many job opportunities available for candidates, what sets you apart from others could be the perks, benefits, salary, and growth opportunities.
- Clearly state the benefits offered with the available position, including paid time off, health insurance, and vision coverage.
- Do your employee benefits also cover family members? Include that information on the job posting!
- Highlight other perks of working at your organization. Free coffee? Flexible schedule? Cell phone allowance?
- Tuition reimbursement? These perks may influence the applicant’s decision to throw their hat in the ring.
Job seekers rank social media and professional network platforms as the most helpful tool when researching a business. A social media presence gives potential employees a glimpse of the company culture and what it may be like to work for your business. Here are a few tips for your social media accounts:
- Stay active on social media by sharing photos and content about what it’s like to work for your business and how employees contribute to the organization’s success.
- Add links to your social platforms from your website so users can easily pop over to visit.
Go Ahead, Toot Your Own Horn
- Let candidates know how your company is recognized in the community and your peer group. Keep in mind you are selling your company as a great place to work as much as the candidate is showcasing themselves as a great employee!
- Voted a great place to work? Has your team won industry awards or other accolades? List awards and recognition prominently on your careers page and your company information page.
If you’re excelling in areas that are important to candidates, let them know on your social platforms, too – It’s your time to shine!
Showcase Employee and Customer Feedback
Savvy candidates will check out your customer reviews on Google, Yelp, Facebook, and employee testimonials on sites like Glassdoor. Feeling good about your reviews in both areas?
- Make it easy for prospective employees to review external feedback by integrating it on your website. There are several plug-ins available for WordPress sites that will display the feedback in a sidebar.
The website user experience is just as important for the recruitment funnel as it is for the purchase or customer funnel. It may arguably be even more important in the current job market. Focusing energy and resources on creating a positive user experience for your applicants may increase the number and quality of candidates for your open positions.
What can you do to improve the user experience for prospective employees?
Make It Findable
Seventy percent of job seekers use Google to search for job openings. If your job isn’t popping up in search results, here’s a quick tip:
- Did you know you can add schema markup for your job postings so they are discoverable in Google? Schema markup, or structured data, is code that makes it easier for search engines to crawl your website. Think of the schema markup as a label for the job-related content that tells search engines the page is relevant for people in the job search process.
Think Mobile First
Many of us stay plugged in, and job seekers are no exception. According to research from Glassdoor, 58% of candidates use their mobile devices for job searches. A mobile-friendly careers page can increase the number of applicants for your position. Here are a few tips for your mobile site:
- Keep menus simple and intuitive to allow the potential candidate to navigate the website easily.
Speed up the load time of your mobile site (and desktop site!) by compressing image file sizes. Pro tip: if you are using a WordPress website, several plug-ins will do this for you – ta-da!
Make Applying Easy for Them
Lengthy job applications on both mobile and desktop sites can deter potential applicants. Nearly 60% of potential candidates will abandon an application that is too long or difficult to complete. Consider trimming down portions of the application when possible. Ask yourself if the question is something you need to know now, or you can ask after the interview process has started. Some areas to consider are:
- Do you check references after you extend a job offer and not before? Removing that question can help trim down the application.
- Do you accept digital copies of resumes? If so, consider letting applicants skip typing in the same information in form fields. Keep the application process as easy as possible to garner more applicant leads.
Make Hiring Easy for You
Integrating an applicant tracking system (ATS) for your business can help streamline the application process for the candidate and the hiring process for you.
- Many third-party software programs include custom employment applications for both desktop and mobile and feed into a central database where the hiring manager can review and respond to applications timely. Several industry-leading programs are available for recruitment, or you can invest in custom software to meet your recruiting needs.
We know it’s been a challenge to recruit and hire this year. Improving your online recruitment strategy will help you attract top talent. Hopefully, some of these tips and suggestions can help you find great candidates to join your team!
Careerarc: 23 Surprising Stats on the Future of Recruitment, CMD Recruitment: 2021 Trends: What will the employment and job market look like?, CNBC: Lack of workers is hurting small businesses’ ability to keep up with demand, FinancesOnline: 101 Hiring Statistics You Must Read: 2021/2022 Data Analysis & Market Share, Glassdoor: The Rise of Mobile Devices in Job Search: Challenges and Opportunities for Employers, Google: Add structured data to job postings, Imaginasium: Spoiler Alert: Employer Branding is a Thing and it Matters to Your Company, LinkedIn Talent Solutions: Global Recruiting Trends 2017, NFIB: Small Business Optimism Index, People Management: Compelling online presence now ‘essential’ for attracting top talent, experts say, ProSky: Top 7 Ways To Attract Talent With Your Website, Robert Half: How to Build Your Online Presence to Attract Accounting Talent, Society for Human Resource Management: Job Openings Reach Record High, But Where Are the Applicants?, Society for Human Resource Management: Most Job Seekers Abandon Online Job Applications, US Bureau of Labor Statistics: Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary, WeWork: What small businesses should know about recruiting