The labor market in the technology industry is among one of the most highly competitive ones. The hunger for real talent is immense, as there’re a significant number of emerging companies that are constantly opening new positions.
Practically, the number of jobs offered are more than the total number of employees. In the US alone, there’re 627 000 unfilled positions in the technology and SaaS industry. These specifications of the labor market imply that talent acquisition is among the top priorities for brands in the sector, as it determines their productivity and capabilities.
Furthermore, the chances of attracting top talent from your first engagement with them are pretty low. This is because recruiters and advertisers approach skillful individuals in the industry on a daily basis. They have a vast range of job opportunities to choose from. That’s why the process of considering which ones are worthy, comparing them, and selecting one is quite lengthy.
Recruiting is now a highly competitive activity, that’s why we should look at it as a brand building activity and include various teams and experts in the process.
To help marketers and HR specialists contribute real results to their companies‘ talent acquisition efforts, the team of DevriX has listed the top 8 most effective practices that will help you attract skilled personnel:
1. Inbound Recruiting
Inbound recruiting involves the inbound marketing approach in the talent acquisition process to create engaging experiences that help companies establish effective communication with top talent.
This approach involves both creating valuable brand employer content and providing a remarkable application experience that includes both active and passive job seekers. However, to engage with potential employees, you have to provide them with content that’s specifically tailored to their needs, goals, and interests.
This approach will help you appeal to them as a trustworthy brand they would want to work with. To achieve this, you have to base your talent acquisition efforts on data that will allow you to craft consumer-centric experiences.
One of the most helpful practices is to store potential employee characteristics in the form of candidate profiles, similar to buyer personas but for recruiting purposes. An essential tip is to work with your current employees to gain the needed data to craft psychographic profiles of talent you want to acquire.
When we’re talking about inbound recruiting and understanding our potential employees, it’s crucial to think of the candidates’ journey towards choosing an employer. Similar to the buying funnel, there are different stages at which the candidate can be at a certain moment, that require different marketing approaches:
- Attract – This is the point at which a random user views your content for the first time. Your main goal is to retain them as a regular visitor. To acquire more users, who will engage with your content, your primary focus should be to build brand awareness.
- Convert – Your main goal at this stage is to leverage the interest of visitors and turn it into action, converting them into leads, and collecting data to help you craft more user-centric content. This could happen through various opt-in methods, such as signing up for a newsletter and registration. The important thing is that under the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) you need to make sure you collect two types of consent through which you collect personal data or information (email, phone, address, name).
The first should state or provide a link to a statement that the user provides you with consent to collect and store their data. The second needs to inform the user of what purposes you will be using this information (e.g. “sending newsletters”). It’s a good practice for all present potential employees with the opportunity to choose which topics they’re interested in. This will help you understand what content is the most engaging and help you craft more personally-tailored experiences.
- Close – At this stage, you are managing a workflow with already engaged website visitors that have qualified as potential employees, aiming to convert them to job candidates. Effective practices to stimulate the decision-making process are emailing already engaged prospects with newsletters informing about an open position, inviting people to a recruiting event, or even proposing a live chat with someone from your company. Such methods will help you stand out from competitors and react promptly to users’ needs.
- Delight – Finally, if you offer a really remarkable application experience – such as live interactions, engaging recruitment campaigns, sending feedback to unapproved candidates and retaining them as engaged website visitors, that will help you build a group of promoters, that’ll recommend your brand to others, no matter if they are already on your team or not.
2. Employer Branding
Employer Branding is the process of building your reputation as an employer. This requires more specific content aimed at addressing the needs of potential candidates by emphasizing your unique employee value proposition, as opposed to more general materials which strengthen the communication with consumers.
For example, if you’re a SaaS company, offering a CRM software, an article or a video about your product will be aimed at potential clients, but an article about a specific team challenge, showing your brand’s inside culture – work processes, additional benefits, managerial attitude, and team diversity will resonate well with potential employees.
Having a strong image as an employer is crucial to the talent acquisition process, according to Glassdoor.com, 69% of people are likely to apply to a job if the employer actively manages its employer brand.
Working with Talent Pools
Talent pools are lists of candidates that are not currently being considered for a role. Your campaigns, recruiters and job postings reach many people. However, you’ve already paid the price for engaging with candidates, no matter if you hired them or not.
So it’s a good practice to engage with people who were not selected, or haven’t applied yet but might be interested.
This approach will not only help you significantly reduce the costs of future talent acquisition campaigns, but it’ll also help you save valuable time. Even if a candidate didn’t make it to the final selection at one point, people are constantly developing and acquiring new skills and expertise.
This means that if a year ago, an individual was interested in the position you were offering, but lacked certain qualifications, he/she might have gained them through experience in the meantime. Reaching those people, when a new position opens, will also reduce the time waiting for a job posting to reach people through an advertising campaign or organically.
Furthermore, such efforts will help you turn candidates into brand promoters. You can easily re-engage with those people through the information you already have about them. Just be sure they’ve given you the go-ahead to email them with job offers or news.
Furthermore, candidates not currently being considered for a job could provide you with valuable feedback that will help you polish your campaigns and adjust your overall talent acquisition strategy. That’s why you need to keep your talent pools as data-rich as possible. Make sure the profiles of different candidates can answer questions such as:
- Have you spoken to them before? When?
- Do you need to follow up?
- Are they someone that’s already turned you down? Do you know why?
- Have they previously applied for a job? Which one? When?
Such questions will help you know which candidates you can reach and with what type of proposal. For example, if a person has already applied for a senior software engineer and has given you consent for further communication, but wasn’t considered due to a lack of skills, an email informing of a new job opening as a junior software engineer could make them apply for the role.
On the other hand, top talent may have turned you down because for them the role of a senior software engineer seemed unchallenging and the salary or benefits were not attractive enough. A newly opened position as a project manager on the developers’ team might be much more appealing to such person. In that case, you would need to consider contacting them.
3. Career Pages
Specific pages, aimed at potential employees are a beneficial talent acquisition practice. They strengthen your employer image, present your inside corporate culture, and help candidates at the consideration stage understand your unique employee proposal.
To appeal to users, such pages should look like a one-stop-shop for potential employees. They should answer all possible questions candidates might have and urge them to apply for a specific position.
To be more attractive, career pages should showcase your company culture, work approach and employee benefits. This will help candidates decide whether the working environment will be suitable for them and meet their needs.
Furthermore, unique benefits, usually speak of employers who deeply respect and cherish their employees. Such brands attract and retain much more talent than their competitors.
It’s also helpful to include employee testimonials as they help build trust with candidates. After all, if a person who already works at a particular company is recommending it to you and telling how great the experience is, you’re much more likely to follow up job offers from the brand.
Keep in mind that generally, career pages are dull places which attract only active job seekers. Leverage this by standing out from the competition and include engaging content. Such content should be attractive to consumers and encourage them to share the page as to attract passive job seekers as well. Use the information from candidate profiles to come up with creative ideas.
For example, you may have discovered that most software engineers are interested in Game of Thrones and that among this group, the most common habits for developers, while they are working, is to listen to music. So, making a simple quiz that mixes professional questions with Game of Thrones topics would resonate well with the audience. This is the engaging mechanic.
Now, let’s create a viral one. Based on the answers, you could provide users with their own Spotify playlist and urge them to share the experience with others via social media. Such small but powerful functionalities, could drastically increase the reach and effectiveness of your talent acquisition efforts, and help strengthen the communication with candidates.
According to SlideShare.com, today, 73% of candidates start their job search on Google. This statistic implies that if you want to reach more candidates, you have to optimize your career page(s) for SEO. Don’t focus on just a single keyword, because even if you rank top 1 for it, you’re severely limiting your audience. It’s better to select a small set of specific words.
Google’s Keyword Planners could help you substantially in that task. Consider both the number of people searching for a particular keyword and how difficult it’ll be to rank high for it. Choose the best combinations of both.
Another white hat SEO practice is to add headers to different sections. It’ll make it easier for users to navigate around your website and comprehend the information more quickly. Including keywords in headings will also help search engines better understand the context of your career page.
Pro Tip: If you’re recruiting employees in various fields (technology, marketing, HR) make different sub-pages for each sector. This way you’ll offer specific needs-based content to different groups of candidates, which will build your employer reputation, generate more engagement and generally appear to be more trustworthy. Furthermore, this approach will increase the chance to rank higher for a particular industry, reaching and attracting more candidates.
4. Recruitment Video Marketing
According to the NY Times, the average attention span of consumers is around 8 seconds with the tendency to decrease. Video content is useful as it manages to attract the attention of consumers within a concise timeframe and keeps them engaged.
Research by Syndacast reveals that 65% of video viewers watch more than ¾ of a video. This shows that video content should be an essential part of every talent acquisition campaign. To help make this marketing practice even more effective, we’ve listed a few proven tips that can help your company appeal to more candidates:
- Employee Testimonials – Employees are among the most trusted sources of information when it comes to business. In a recruitment video, they can add value through their personal viewpoints and experiences within the company. That’s why, if you want candidates to believe what you’re telling them, speak through your employees.
- Showcase Company Culture and Employee Benefits – In a highly competitive market, like the one of the Technology and SaaS industry, to stand out from competitors without risking your financial stability, you should offer employees additional perks for working with you. Presenting those in a video could be a key differentiator in the consideration process for users.
- Exciting Work Cases – To help candidates understand the job and the required skills better, you can present your most compelling cases. For top talent, such a practical approach could be inspiring and could motivate them to apply. Many professionals would love the opportunity to work on more engaging and exciting projects.
- Show Employees That in Your Company There Is Growth – This approach is useful when you’re searching for non-managerial personnel. Showing your candidates that you care about their development by presenting real cases of people who grew significantly within your company could stimulate them to apply. Promising employees a brighter future and telling them you care is what many are searching for in an employer.
Video content is also helpful as platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook and YouTube give you the opportunity to retarget people who’ve already viewed your video. This way you could easily move prospects down the funnel and convert them into candidates.
5. Talent Acquisition via Social Media Marketing
According to Workable.com, 92% of recruiters state they’ve hired at least once through LinkedIn and 24% say the same about Facebook. These statistics show that social media can be a powerful recruitment tool.
Posting content aimed at candidates on such platforms increases job visibility and also reaches passive job seekers who, in most cases, are engaged with your brand for other reasons (as consumers or because they’re following work-related topics).
For example, if you’re a video game developer, most of your social media audience are people playing your games. However, posting a job offer to join the team could be a dream come true for many gamers in your community. Taking into account the fact that these people are technology-oriented, some of them might possess the required skills. Thus, social media could turn into an additional channel for talent acquisition.
Furthermore, monitoring prospects on such platforms and looking through their profiles, could present you with significant insight. This approach could also help you determine what type of content people engage with most, what the general user behavior patterns are, what your best candidates are interested in, and even point to potential issues, allowing greater flexibility of your overall recruitment strategy.
Social media marketing for talent recruitment also increases your reputation as an employer and strengthens the communication with candidates, allowing you to reach new audiences.
6. Employee Referral Programs (ERPs)
One of the most efficient ways to hack recruitment is to turn it into a constant inside process. ERPs are an extremely cost-effective way to attract talent through your personnel. These programs stimulate employees to refer people for open positions through a reward system.
They’re amazingly effective, as your current employees understand both what the job requires and to whom your company is attractive. Furthermore, ERPs significantly reduce costs and the need for paid advertising as the process of acquiring applicants becomes more natural.
If you want to efficiently implement an employee referral program in your company there are two key aspects to keep in mind.
- First, you have to communicate the ERP clearly to your current personnel in a manner that will reach as many employees as possible. Leaflets rarely do the trick anymore. The most efficient ways are either to have a digital page that’s like a one-stop-shop for employees with a specific section that introduces the ERP, or by using internal emails.
- Another good method is to inform the team during official corporate events or meetings where most of the company’s workforce is present. Moreover, you should offer employees a reward system, which encourages them to refer more people who are appropriate for the job. This could be through a monetary reward system, trips, tickets for events, or useful tech gadgets. A good idea is to create a wall of honor, putting the employees with the highest ERP score in a visible place in the office and promoting them as “team-heroes.”
- Last, but not least, engaging your employees in inviting new hires to the company will give them the opportunity to choose industry peers that they already know and expect to be good fits for their teams.
According to our experience, the best channels to conduct recruitment campaigns are Google (SEO), Facebook, and LinkedIn.
To effectively reach potential employees, you have to target them accordingly. To do so, work with the information you’ve gathered in your candidate profiles and use your instincts to find trends and behavioral patterns that competitors have not thought about.
For example, let’s say, you’ve discovered that most of the people interested in working in your company are local residents that are also looking for alternative direct application methods.
You could use this information to create a networking beer bash event once a month where employees, industry specialists, and potential candidates could meet up, eat burgers, play games, drink and communicate. This way, you’ll be able to meet the needs of your audience and offer an approach that will engage them and effectively meet your talent acquisition goals.
Pro Tip: You could use alternative referral channels such as Glassdoor.com and Vault.com which will help strengthen your online presence as an employer. Besides, these channels give you the opportunity to reach people from their audiences, which include a substantial amount of active job seekers.
8. Internships and Mentoring
It’s always good to contribute to a community. Even if you don’t see any personal benefit in doing so, at first.
People, who already have the experience and expertise and have proven to be quite successful in their fields, who have“been there” and “done that”, could nurture young talent through valuable advice and support.
By joining, you’ll establish yourself as a mentor that helps individuals in the industry. It’s not only important to offer users valuable information and helpful information, but it is also important to encourage them. This way you may attract talented individuals that were not confident enough to apply and will be grateful for your encouragement.
Today is the first day of the DevriX #internship program with the amazing graduates of the Technological School of Electronic Systems #TUES 🙂 Welcome to DevriX, Didi, Spas, Emil and Alexander! We’re thrilled to have you around. 🙂 You can expect some exciting stuff in the next two weeks, diving into #WordPress #plugin (and may be even #themes!) #development.
Establishing yourself as a mentor in the field will help you strengthen your employer brand and attract more talent to your company. People will start viewing you as someone that appreciates their community and employees and will line up to work with you.
In an era where users are forever looking for better and more interesting experiences that add additional value to their lives, you have to offer potential employees attractive content that will turn your communication with them into a positive and ongoing process rather than a simple meet-and-greet experience.
The aim is no longer to just post a job offer and wait for applicants to start lining up. You have to create a community, contribute to its goals, help nurture and encourage them.
The Internet is full of job postings, people are no longer desperate to work for just anyone, they’re trying to find an environment where they’ll belong and will be able to grow. You have to show them that this is what you’re offering rather than a mundane job experience, that you’ll value them and help them to develop.
Furthermore, all the channels you use to communicate with your audience should be telling them this. Give your audience a good reason to apply, especially if you’re in need of real talent!