Recently I had the pleasure of attending the UNLEASH conference where I moderated and participated in several panel sessions, including a candidate experience panel (How HR Technologies Empower Candidate and Employee Experience) with Kevin Grossman, President of the Talent Board as moderator. During the panel, it was clear that we were all working very lean with smaller HR and recruiting teams, a competitive market, and high expectations to produce results. Yet the reality is, in this bull market, we are living at a time when our budgets are the largest and our teams are the most robust. What this means: We can only go down from here, and that makes the need to automate, scale, and outsource our efforts even more important than ever before.
Steps to Scaling Your Recruitment Marketing Efforts
I wanted to touch on a few ways to do this, specifically where we can scale candidate experience and recruitment marketing.
1) Analytics: recruiting metrics and Google Analytics.
Data is the key to improving metrics in the areas of time, cost and quality. In order to hit all three components effectively, metrics and analytics will allow you and your recruiting team make the best informed decisions about what to automate, where to spend time on high-touch tasks, how to reach candidates more quickly and in a targeted way, and manage costs.
Using analytics beginning at the sourcing stage can help you quickly identify top prospects for your hiring funnel. This is one function you can streamline via automation. Using assessment programs and hiring algorithms not only allow you to quantify the skills you’ve identified in top talent, but also identify candidates who are not a good cultural fit or may pose a turnover risk.
You can also use Google Analytics to set up cross-domain tracking between your ATS, career site, and CRM. It can track all of them at the same time in order to give you a full line of sight from initial candidate entry to a completed application so you can deeply understand candidate behaviors and optimize your recruitment marketing funnel. It may seem complicated when you first get started, but Google Analytics can help you achieve your primary goal of understanding your candidates and learning the best tactics to find them.
2) Leverage automation.
As the need for more outbound recruiting increases, the demands on recruiters to work faster, smarter, and better to win over top talent have increased. The biggest challenge is that we don’t have enough time to execute outbound recruiting at scale. Automation technology has been helping other departments scale for decades. The same artificial intelligence, machine learning, and predictive analytics that are helping marketing teams target new leads and sales teams manage customers can now be applied to candidate recruiting as well.
Automation can improve your current traditional bidding and advertising process because programmatic advertising tasks include making real-time, split-second decisions about increasing or decreasing bids for specific jobs and placing the most relevant job ads in front of your target candidates.
While there are many opportunities for automation in HR technology for talent sourcing, candidate evaluation, candidate engagement, and candidate nurturing, the biggest challenge for agency recruiters is that most CRM and staffing software doesn’t yet offer the functionality that true recruitment marketers need. It might seem daunting, but it is possible to create these automation and engagement strategies outside of your HR software.
For example, a tool like Zapier allows you to connect over 1,000 apps, including Gmail, Basecamp, HubSpot, Evernote, Google Sheets, Typeform, and your HR technology. In just a few minutes, you can set up automations called “Zaps,” and build a great candidate nurturing funnel that provides custom content to candidates based on their clicks and actions. You can even connect calendar events, social media mentions, or new lead details straight into any chat, like Slack conversations.
3) Vendor partners.
Job boards have been using programmatic ad buying to drive qualified candidates to specific job postings for years now. The difference is, with automation, those same programmatic tools are now available to you and your recruiting team. Make the best use of your vendor partners to develop creative strategies like programmatic advertising. By using data and targeting, intelligent algorithms allow advertisers to exponentially improve the effectiveness of their campaigns, particularly in the area of targeted reach. Intelligent algorithms are constantly learning, which means that the more you use them, the better they work for you. Programmatic is built on this concept, and it’s what Talroo does really well. For example, once your posting is ready, your targeted reach is projected based on audience size and geographic data. In real-time, automation can assess the efficacy of your campaign reach, make recommendations on what to adjust to improve reach, and optimize the performance of your campaign so that you’re getting more mileage out of every dollar in your advertising budget.
4) Prioritizing your efforts.
When you can test recruitment marketing strategies based on your team’s goals, it allows you to prioritize what does and doesn’t work, and prove the validity of a more streamlined approach to hiring. Borrowing from software development agile methodologies, testing and scaling can help significantly accelerate your hiring process. Once you’ve created a new plan to share with hiring managers, test it with a smaller subset of positions for which you’re hiring. If it’s a success, you can roll it out throughout the organization.
This has several benefits: It allows a close-up view of the programs that are worth your time and effort, as well as what can be automated and where to spend more hands-on time. Plus, buy in from stakeholders who may be uncertain about implementing new processes or software, the data you obtain from testing strategies can ensure enthusiastic adoption by hiring managers. If it’s clear from the results that your new strategy is getting a better ROI, then scaling it makes sense for all stakeholders in the hiring process.
If you missed the UNLEASH conference in Las Vegas, you can see the recording of Kevin Grossman’s presentation on The Business Impact of Candidate Experience here.