Inhouse hiring teams have a lot on their plate with sourcing, interviewing, vetting and recruiting candidates and the myriad other tasks they deal with on a day-to-day basis, so it’s only natural that some things may get overlooked.
One aspect that many employers still need to optimise is to think about the candidate application journey, and how easy it really is for talent to apply for jobs.
Candidate application journey
If you put yourself into a candidate’s shoes, they’re likely to be applying for more than one role and won’t just be considering your organisation as their only option. A lot of time, the choice between where to focus their energies will come down to relatively marginal differences, so it’s in your interests to make application processes as simplistic and easy as you possibly can.
For candidates, the process of finding and applying for a role can be distilled into three steps, all of which need to provide relevant, useful information and – crucially – be optimised properly so they are easy to find and follow any specific instructions.
The first of these steps is even being aware of an opportunity at the company. There are obviously numerous channels at your disposal here, so you must make sure that you’re posting roles onto the most relevant sector and vertical market boards (if you use them) and sharing opportunities on your various social media channels where appropriate. You will also need to produce strong, well-communicated job specifications that again, are optimised, and provide all the information required (including salaries). Role outlines that aren’t well written or don’t contain the sort of content that jobseekers are looking for will often be overlooked for those that lay things out in a more straightforward and clear manner. It’s tempting to try and squeeze in overly elaborate descriptions of the role or to inflate the nature of the responsibilities the candidate will ultimately be taking on, but really this just complicates things unnecessarily and will turn away more people than the fluffy language will attract. Be succinct, and straight to the point and don’t try to make the content more complex than it needs to be and it will be much more effective. Essentially, you want to be visible to prospective candidates carrying out sector and company research and to immediately get onto their radar.
The second step in the application journey is research. The vast majority of the sort of candidates that you will want to work with will investigate what it’s like to work at your organisation and will review your employer and company websites to learn more. This means that providing the type of information that these people will be looking for, in the right places, is key. You want to control the message and provide an attractive (but authentic) impression of what day-to-day life at your organisation is like, how far they could potentially climb up the rank working with you, what the company values are and what perks are available, amongst other areas. It’s worth including testimonials from existing staff and video where possible to really bring this to life.
Once the research stage has been completed, and provided the information is aligned to what the candidate is looking for, then the final step of the process will be to apply for a role. This should be the most straightforward element however a surprising number of organisations get this wrong and overcomplicate what should be a simple task. Candidates really don’t want to have to jump through hoops and register for external portals; they want the process to be owned by you and to be able to find out how to apply easily. Companies that do make this unnecessarily convoluted risk losing out on talent to those that have created a more simplistic process.
Enabling talent to apply for jobs
Outside of these three stages there are also a number of other changes you can implement to make it simpler for talent to apply for jobs and source information on your company. We’ve mentioned optimising your content so it ranks more effectively in search engines, and this process should be applied everywhere on your website and other interlinked pages. Equally, you should look to connect your communications channels. For example, if a candidate is looking at your Instagram page, they should also be able to find links to your other channels easily. This is also the case with content, you want professionals to stick to your platforms rather than looking elsewhere and losing momentum and, if someone does want to apply, you need to make sure there’s a clear channel for them to do so.
This can be a challenging process; however, help is at hand. If you would like us to audit your jobs platforms and provide expert advice on how to optimise your output then don’t hesitate to get in touch.
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