These days, you rely on your smartphone for nearly everything from getting directions, streaming music and shopping to managing your fantasy football roster. So why not use it to recruit new employees as well? Right now, there are more jobs in the U.S. than qualified candidates to fill them. And if your company is among the 50 percent of companies struggling to fill open positions, you’re probably trying everything you can to get in front of the right candidates. A mobile strategy can enhance your efforts to find and hire the right people faster by:
- Helping you reach more candidates. More and more candidates are searching for jobs on mobile devices than on desktop computers. More than 70 percent of CareerBuilder's consumer audience is on mobile devices. And according to Pew Research, 1 in 5 Americans only use mobile phones to get access to the internet. That represents a huge missed opportunity if you’re not using mobile strategies to reach job seekers.
- Increasing your applications. Mobile-friendly apply processes enable job seekers to apply in just a few clicks, so candidates are less likely to prolong - or altogether abandon - the apply process. Considering that 45 percent of applications on career sites now come from mobile devices (and this number is only growing), it’s hard to justify not having a mobile-apply process.
So where to begin?
Start with your career site. Here’s the thing: if your website and career pages aren’t built for mobile viewing, you might as well still have an AOL email address and a MySpace page. Forget, for a moment, how frustrating it is to navigate a website that isn’t mobile-friendly. It also makes the company look extremely out of touch. Today, 60 percent of traffic on career sites comes from mobile devices. Yet, more than half of companies do not have websites that are optimized for mobile devices, putting them at a distinct disadvantage.
Not only does having a mobile-optimized careers page show that you know what’s up, it also shows that you have put thought into the candidate experience. It tells job seekers, “We know that searching for jobs can be rough. We want to make it as pain-free as possible for you.” (Now doesn’t that just tug at the heartstrings? Who WOULDN’T want to work for a company like that?)
At the very least, your website should be mobile-friendly. A better option is a mobile-optimized site, but the ideal is one with responsive design. A website with responsive design automatically adjusts to the user’s browser size, creating the best possible user experience.
Let them apply on the fly. What’s better than a mobile-optimized careers page? A mobile apply process. Not only does it save mobile job seekers the time and frustration of an arduous application process, it also saves time for you. With a mobile apply option, job seekers can apply to a job in just a few clicks, uploading a resume they have saved on their phone or online (or created through an app like CareerBuilder for iOS or Android). The easier the apply process, the more willing job seekers are to complete the application process, and the faster (and more likely) those applications will make their way to you.
Build your pipeline. “Apply now” shouldn’t be the only option for job seekers visiting your mobile careers site. For interested-but-not-yet-ready-to-apply job seekers, give them the option to join your talent network. In a few clicks, they can enter their information (perhaps even upload their resumes) and opt in to receive relevant job alerts, company news and other information moving forward – all from the convenience of their mobile devices.
Recruit via text. More and more consumers rely on texting as a way to communicate, making it a fast, easy way to connect with candidates. It’s important to proceed with caution, however. Many candidates are turned off by unsolicited text messages (especially if they’re on a limited data plan), even if it is about a job. Before you start firing off texts, make sure the applicant has given their OK. Even then, keep your messages brief and within normal business hours, and use them only for things such as confirming interview times or following up from an earlier communication. Save anything that requires an entire conversation for email or the phone. Rely on these 3 best practices for texting candidates.
Make interviews faster and easier. Thanks to FaceTime and other video call apps, you can easily set up video interviews with candidates on almost any mobile device. Candidates love mobile video interviews because it saves them the trouble of travelling all the way to your office (and putting on pants), and while they’re no substitute for in-person interviews, they help give employers a better read of candidates than traditional phone screenings allow.
Be strategic with social. Hopefully, you’re already using social media to post jobs, promote your employment brand and interact with candidates (especially considering 79 percent of job seekers use social media to find opportunities). But make sure you’re getting the most from your social media recruiting efforts by posting at the most opportune times - times when candidates are mostly likely to be searching from their mobile devices: early morning (when they’re just waking up), morning and evening commute times, lunch time and weekends.
As mobile use grows even more and HR technology evolves, the opportunity to recruit candidates via mobile devices will only expand. CareerBuilder recently unveiled a brand new feature for its consumer app that is connecting job seekers and employers faster than ever, and will be debuting even more recruiter-focused mobile features in the coming months.