The competition for talent requires organizations and their armies of recruiters to maintain a competitive advantage and a sharp edge when it comes to their recruiting and hiring practices. The modern day recruiter must be proactive, responsive, open-minded, and a little bit competitive. An applicant in your pipeline has also applied to other places so it’s imperative you’re on your game.
There are a number of things that can give an organization and its recruiters a competitive advantage in the gladiatorial arena of today’s hiring environment. Whether you face lack of applicants or lack of qualified applicants makes no difference. The fact is, the best applicants aren’t just dropping on your door-step.
An ace recruiter realizes that speed to hire without jeopardizing the process or quality is critical to winning the recruiting war. You have to be able to attract the best active job seekers to apply and make it as easy as possible for them to do so. Likewise, as a recruiter, you need to be able to sort through those applicants efficiently and recognize the best fit quickly.
Fundamentals of an Advantageous Process
There are some basic considerations when establishing a process aimed at giving you the upper-hand in hiring active candidates. The combination of speed, information requirements, accessibility and recruiter decision making all come into play.
Reducing the complexity of applications is probably one of the most critical aspects of the process. Allowing for a “quick app” collecting the minimum information needed for you as a recruiter to make a “call / no-call” decision is about all you need initially. Making your application mobile friendly is a good first step in this process as it forces you to abbreviate the information you are requesting.
Many times an application process is bogged down with irrelevant and excessive information. This can be a turnoff for some candidates and they may leave the process. There’s nothing more frustrating for an applicant than spending a lot of time on a resume, uploading it to your ATS, only to find out you want them to fill out a digital application as well. Limit the information you need to collect from them to the essential information you need for a “call / no-call.” decision. You will get more applicants!
Mobile friendly application processes will place your opportunities in the hands of more people, literally. If they they can apply with a few taps of the screen and a little bit of initial information (e.g. via Indeed or LinkedIn), you are sure to gain the attention of more people. This also means you can’t purely rely on the artificial intelligence of most applicant tracking systems. AI features are great at flagging applicants, but a human decision is still required.
Gain a Competitive Advantage with These Five Functions
Be sure that the applicant tracking system you select provides for these five key functions, which when leveraged properly, will grant you an extreme competitive advantage. A system like ExactHire’s HireCentric ATS will provide all these features and more giving you a robust platform with the functionality you need to compete in the recruiting space.
As mentioned earlier, the less painful you can make an application process the better. A mobile application is a must and an abbreviated process is critical. You don’t want to lose applicants before they’ve even completed the application. Take a hard look at your ATS of choice. Is it just an infinite amount of text fields requiring manual data entry?
A fast application should provide for the critical information necessary for you to make a “call / no-call” decision. This may include name, phone number, email, current position and brief summary, and any “knock-out” questions you may have. Caveat – make sure knock-out questions are actually relevant and matter.
It goes without saying that integration with social media sites is a must for every recruiter. A modern and effective ATS needs to interact and leverage social media. You should be able to push jobs to and share jobs on social media sites. As well as allow current employees to do the same. This allows a more active approach to recruiting rather than relying on the “post-and-pray” method.
Your applicant tracking system is the heart and sole of your hiring process. If you’re fortunate enough to get high double-digit or even triple-digit applicant counts, you will need an efficient method for keeping them organized. Top line features allow for the integration of applicant assessments and questionnaires. Your information gathering process should rely on who the applicant is and what they are capable of more so than a labored list of previous jobs, duties and functions. Assessments and questionnaires will provide you with an interactive look at who you’re considering for employment.
The hiring process doesn’t stop once an offer is made. Your onboarding process is the first impression your new employee will receive from your company. Remember, they have nothing invested yet, so a bad first impression could be the difference between a fully accepted offer and a rejected offer. Allowing for e-forms, digital signatures, video tutorials, etc.; will set you apart from the labored and antiquated new hire paperwork.
Analytics and Sourcing
What good is an ATS without the ability to leverage and mine the data that exists? Continuously improving on your process is sure to improve your speed to hire and attract more of the right applicants. Basic information such as time-to-hire, workflow, interviews, hiring yields among others, should be expected. Advanced information that gives you the ability to more precisely target your most successful applicants is what makes a significant difference.
The application process is the first impression an applicant gets of your company. Make it a good one. If you keep these fundamentals in mind and choose an applicant tracking system with some key competitive features, you will surely be on your way for winning the war on applicants. Remember, in today’s labor market, you typically need them more than they need you!
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