by Sabrina Balmick, Marketing Manager, ACA Talent
As the year draws to a close, hiring managers, recruiters, and Human Resources professionals are looking ahead and considering their hiring strategy. Most know which and how many positions will be open, and are already starting to reach out to their professional networks and mine their internal databases to fill those jobs as quickly as possible.
Even with these rich resources at their fingertips, there is always the need for a boost in the candidate pool for a recruitment operation to hit the ground running. That’s where advertising comes into play.
Far from being a “post-and-hope” strategy, recruitment advertising, like job postings, social media, and traditional media, may use targeted channels to enrich your candidate pools so you make quality hires. While internal resources may help you reach many qualified candidates, there may be strong external candidates just waiting to be discovered.
Here are a few ways to mold your message to your intended audience to maximize your ad resources and effectively market your open positions.
1. Spread the word. Don’t stick to just one source, because you’ll only be fishing from the same candidate pools over and over again. Branch out and try niche boards or social networks. Think about the career level of candidates you want to attract, and tailor your campaign to the appropriate source.
2. Build a dynamite message. For advertising purposes, ditch your standard job description that goes on for pages about requirements and legal specifications. Keep your posting short and sweet, with only the most tantalizing elements. How do you do that? Paint a picture for your candidates about what it’s like to work for your company and what skills the candidate will need to be successful. Evoke a vivid image of why candidates would want to work for you.
3. Include keywords and phrases. Think about the most commonly searched words for similar positions (check out your competition, if you’re running low on ideas), and incorporate these into your job description. Make sure you’re integrating them into the text organically, and not just littering your post with keywords, or job seekers might mistake your ad for SPAM.
4. Make it easy on the eyes. Nothing screams “Disorganized!” like a poorly-formatted posting. Resist the urge to underline or bold every other word. And once you decide on a format, use it consistently. It makes for a more elegant visual presentation. Don’t forget to proofread! Grammatical errors or typos can spell doom for your posting. If you misspell common keywords, it can also prevent potential applicants from finding your posting.
5. Encourage candidate contact. Make it easy for candidates to both apply to the position and reach out to you (or an assigned resource) with questions. If you have an in-house Applicant Tracking System, include a link so candidates can apply directly to the job order, making your recruitment workflow so much simpler. If you’re worried about finding the time to reply to a flood of applicants, set up your ATS to automatically send response letters to those who apply.
6. Make it easy to apply. If your online application process is long, consider streamlining it so more candidates complete the process. Speak with your recruitment specialist to determine the most effective timing for collecting candidate applications within the recruitment process.
7. Harness the power of referrals. Employee referrals often result in some of the best hires your organization might make. Ask your current employee population to help you find trusted candidates who may not be actively applying to jobs. Spread the word about open positions to your internal email lists and bulletin boards. If you don’t have a formal referral process in place, speak to your HR team about best practices to encourage and reward referrals.
These recruitment marketing ideas represent just the tip of the iceberg. When it comes to keeping your sourcing strategy fresh, it’s important to experiment with new techniques. Try these, or invent some new ones, either way, innovation will help candidates find you. If you come across some new ideas that you’d like to share, please forward them to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll select a few to share in an update.