Recently I’ve been paying attention to the job vacancies I’ve seen listed on social media. To say most of them are uninspiring is an understatement. It got me thinking about how much people really take the time to understand recruitment.
“Fantastic opportunity to join our team – click here”
“Now hiring – click here”
“Check out our latest vacancies – click here”
“Currently recruiting for this position – click here…”
Or the most criminal and lazy of them all – just a link to the job posting itself.
I’ve often felt recruiting is one of the most overlooked functions of a business despite the obvious ramifications of getting it wrong. Recruitment training is neglected and the assumption is if we can fill the seat the job’s done.
There are more and more opportunities becoming available to talented people – and if there isn’t they create them for themselves. If your aim is just to fill a seat then by all means continue with the above and you’ll fill it – temporarily. But if you’re trying to attract quality applicants then ask yourself a question:
What in my post is going to entice someone who doesn’t NEED the job to click that link?
But why would we be trying to attract people who don’t need the job you might ask. Because simply put the people who will click a link as uninspiring as the above, aren’t usually the ones who are in demand.
We’ve come from a period when jobs weren’t as plentiful and those seeking work had to take whatever they could get. Companies didn’t offer much by way of compensation, career experience was expendable and poor recruitment practices increased to save money. With the competition for top talent increasing – that’s now a thing of the past.
Obviously it varies by industry, but it’s said that ‘Passive’ jobseekers (those not ‘Actively’ involved in an on-going job search) make up 75% of the market. Here’s the interesting bit – 60% of that 75% will still entertain an offer if it’s appealing enough. Bad news for you though – your uninspiring recruiting tactics aren’t going to get attention from these guys and will engage a maximum of a quarter of the job market if you’re lucky.
So what will entice top candidates to click the link and check out the job you’re advertising? Here’s a few pointers:
People want to do work that matters. Nobody likes the idea they give up 100,000 hours of their lives to a meaningless function of a soulless company for peanuts. Why does the work matter? If you can figure that out and make people feel important they’ll be more interested.
Pay a decent wage. Your OTE £60k is great but I deal in facts. If your basic is minimum wage then that’s what I decide if I’m prepared to earn because everything else is ‘potential’ and can be influenced by all kinds of things not always in my control. You’re asking for a commitment – make one back again. Providing a decent wage and proper support to reach those high commissions means everybody wins. You’ll attract more applicants and you might just keep them longer too.
Stop being generic! “Great opportunity”, “interesting project”, “dynamic team”, “exciting chance to join…” – no, sorry but no, it’s not exciting and what even is this dynamic team?! In most companies that turns out to be a group of people with the same manager and shift patterns… Stop peddling phony lines used in every job advert for the last ten years. I’ll decide if your company is exciting, if the project is interesting or if it’s a great opportunity. Don’t tell me it is – show me the evidence. Have you won awards for being a great place to work? Are you an investor in people? Have you got an exceptionally high staff retention/ promotion/ engagement level? Is there a compelling story behind the work you do? Tell me the real ins and outs of your company – the generic stuff is just boring and probably a lie.
Build your Talent Brand. If you don’t know what a Talent Brand is then you need to get to know. We used to put the word out we were hiring, say we were a great company and the message went unchallenged. We had a large say in the strength of our Employer Brand. With the expansion of the internet we now really have to pay attention to and foster our Talent Brand. In short it’s what we say, what our people say (past + present) and what everyone else says and hears our company is like to work for that forms our Talent Brand. It can be an amazingly powerful tool used to showcase the reality of your workplace. Done right your Talent Brand will lead to potential candidates jumping at the chance to click your link when they see you’re hiring.
“49% of people say the biggest obstacle to changing jobs was not knowing what it’s really like to work somewhere”
Listen to your people. You know who can tell you the best and the worst reasons to work for your company? The people working for your company. If you encourage the right culture in your business people will be happy to contribute and educate you on the pros and cons of their experience. You can share the pros in your posts as real evidence of what your teams are saying. Maybe you can even do something about the cons too…
Think about candidate experience. The balance of the recruitment seesaw is all wrong and we need to acknowledge when there’s a shift in power. Those doing the recruiting still think it’s enough just to pop up a job advert and ask candidates to jump through hoops. The idea you might have to actually sell your company to the candidate is unthinkable. Recruiting is becoming more of a skill and the most successful recruiters are thinking about how to create/ market an appealing proposition and make the candidate’s application process as quick, easy and smooth as possible. “But if they want the job they’ll put in the effort” – and I’d like a six pack but it doesn’t always work that way. The most talented people have options; they don’t NEED your job. If you want them to apply you’ve got to make your process candidate friendly; otherwise you will get applications but you’ll miss out on a lot of passive job seekers.
Vibrant Talent Development can work with you to review your recruiting strategy, develop skills and enable you to acquire the right people for your business.