Candidate Attraction Strategies: 4 Things The Best Ones Have In Common
The evolution of social media, new technology (which makes instant gratification a norm for job seekers), and the shift from an employer’s market to a candidate-driven market have all transformed the recruiting process.
The outcome? Well, for one, candidates aren’t just flocking to companies in droves anymore. Really great candidates are a lot more selective, which means that you’ll have to put much more effort nowadays to understand what attracts these candidates to companies.
And secondly, the most typical candidate attraction tricks that you’d think would be enough to get job seekers to apply to your company probably won’t work so well on their own anymore, such as writing a decent job ad and posting it on all of the “best” job boards.
What this means for your company is that if you’ve been using the same candidate attraction strategies for as long as you and your colleagues can remember, and they aren’t getting you enough qualified candidates… it’s about time you re-strategize.
Here are the 5 things that all really successful candidate attraction strategies have in common to help you improve yours:
1. They all incorporate employer branding in a big way
No candidate attraction strategy is complete without acknowledging the importance of your company’s employer brand and properly managing it in a way that benefits your efforts. The key is to recognize that your employer brand can make or break your first impression(s) on job seekers, and also that online employer review platforms – because they encapsulate so much of your employer brand – have the power to attract OR turn away the best candidates.
Your task, then, is to at the very least:
- Know what your company’s holistic employer brand is, from how you show up on Google and Google for Jobs, how your job ads and career page convey your company story, what impression your social media accounts give (or don’t give) to job seekers, and of course, your online employer reviews.
- Know which review platforms matter, claim your company profile on those platforms, respond constructively to all feedback, and work to produce real change in your organization in response to the criticism you get.
2. They all target passive candidates in their own way
Companies used to be able to post new job positions online and then sit back and wait for candidates to come flooding in. Today, companies very often have to actively seek out passive candidates to get enough qualified candidates to choose from; passive candidates, meaning those who are happy in their current positions and not throwing their name in the hat for new ones, but open to the possibility for the right position with the right employers. Social media, especially LinkedIn, is a useful platform for this to find these candidates and give them something to think about before they ever apply themselves.
3. They all leverage relationships in a smart way
Just like salespeople build relationships and rapport with potential clients in the weeks, months, and sometimes years leading up to the first sale, successful recruitment strategies value relationship-building with top talent in the industry, whether they’re looking now or not. This is called building your talent pool and it’s something that every growing company should aspire to because it’s the ultimate long-term candidate attraction strategy play. These long-term candidate relationships lead the best to seek you out when they’re finally ready for a change (and they’re usually worth the wait).
One thing to note is that if your strategy includes relationship-building, than it works best if you incorporate your employees such as by establishing an employee referral program.
4. They all work feverishly to meet (and even exceed) candidate expectations
From offering competitive salary and benefits, to being transparent about the good and the bad about your company, to having a fast and uncomplicated application process, to making their candidate journey as seamless as possible, companies who understand and strive to meet candidate expectations have a hugely improved chance of attracting more the right candidates than companies who don’t make that effort.
And the reasons are obvious: if you cater to candidates’ needs from the very start, they’ll be more likely to feel comfortable with you as a potential employer and more likely to believe that you listen to and take care of your employees. It’s a candidate’s market, so speaking in their terms and putting their expectations first will pay off in spades in helping you attract more of the candidates you want to attract.
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