SmartRecruiters Blog

7 Questions to Challenge Your Candidate Journey

When was the last time you put yourself in the shoes of a candidate looking for a job on your careers site? 

Losing sight of the candidate’s perspective can often be the case for recruitment teams who are understandably busy. But when you start to take a look at your candidate journey through the eyes of a job seeker, you’ll be amazed at the number of opportunities there are to improve your overall candidate experience. 

This is why it’s so important to get an external view on your candidate journey review. In the meantime, you can take a look at these 7 questions to challenge your candidate journey review. 

1. How easy is it for talent to discover open roles at your company

When candidates are searching for a job the experience on a careers website should feel personal, intuitive and easy. The more steps between the candidate entering your careers website and getting to the open role they want to apply for the less likely they are to fully commit to applying. 

The content of a job description can be a deal-breaker for a potential candidate so it’s important that the job title and the job description match, that the role information is transparent and the expectations are correct.

2. Where are you missing out on attracting talent?

7 Questions To Challenge Your Candidate Journey

List the different channels you use in your talent attraction strategy. You probably have a careers website and company profiles on popular job boards such as Indeed and LinkedIn. These are traditional channels, and there’s no doubt that they still generate applications. But what if you could increase your applications exponentially? 

Social messaging platforms offer a massive opportunity for recruiters to engage with talent. Facebook Messenger engages with 1.3 billion monthly users and WhatsApp has over 1 billion daily users. 

Sales and marketing lead generation have been utilising social media platforms such as Instagram and Facebook for years. Which makes sense considering social media is where customers spend a lot of their free time, brands are understanding the importance of relating to their customers – so why not recruiters and candidates?

3. How does your company appear on online job sites?

7 Questions To Challenge Your Candidate Journey

According to Glassdoor’s 2020 Report, 51% of job seekers prefer finding job opportunities on online job sites. Whether it’s LinkedIn, Indeed, Xing or Glassdoor you work with; it’s important that your company’s reputation and tone of voice is consistent across all platforms. Why?

Changing jobs is a huge emotional decision for candidates. They are at a point where switching employers can mean a change in lifestyle, salary and career. Throughout their job search they need to get the impression they can trust a potential employer.

Employers can build trust by providing a consistent message across each platform, and working to improve their rating on employer review sites. After all, 84% of job seekers say a company’s reputation matters.

4. How are you engaging Passive vs. Active talent?

It’s important to know the different scenarios in which candidates find themselves on your careers website. Depending on which channel they arrived from can tell you what their intentions are or where they are in the recruitment funnel. 

A helpful way to analyse and aggregate behaviours is to categorise candidates into two groups, passive and active. Active candidates are those actively looking for a new role and passive candidates could land on your careers website by accident. Either way, both groups offer quality candidates. 

Take a look at your careers site traffic analytics and note which channels you’re getting traffic from. Active candidates are more likely to come from direct and organic channels, if they’re typing your company name and a careers related keyword into a search engine. 

They can also come from referral channels such as Glassdoor and LinkedIn if they’ve been looking at your job positions on those platforms, and now they want to get a better understanding of your company. 

Looking at your traffic analytics can give you a great insight into how you can grow the traffic channels that work best for your company. 

5. What tactics are you using to engage with passive talent?

Passive talent has many faces, it can be someone who’s accidentally ended up on your careers blog, or joined a webinar hosted by your company. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to attract and engage with passive talent which we can break down into two categories – paid and organic engagement. 

Paid engagement can include employer branding campaigns, paid job postings or promoted content targeted at your candidate personas. If you’re not getting the candidates you want walking through the door it’s worth trying out a few targeted campaigns on LinkedIn to engage with the candidates you want. 

Organic engagement is very valuable, it doesn’t involve budget but it can mean results take longer to see. That’s why it’s important to create some great content around the employees you already have. People’s stories offer candidates clarity and help build trust, this is great if passive talent doesn’t know your company brand. 

Another great way to engage with passive talent is to build a great community around your consumer brand. For example, if you are a sports company and have a growing social media fan base, you can create a community of brand fans and use this as an opportunity to let brand fans know you have positions open. 

6. How well are you communicating with your candidates?

Whether it’s a status update on their application or they have a question about the job position, candidates want instant communication and maybe more importantly they want transparency.

It’s time to see your careers site from your candidate’s point of view. Choose a scenario in which a candidate is coming to communicate with your brand and ask: 

  • How are you delivering that talent communication experience?
  • How many methods of communication are you offering? 
  • Is the UX too confusing? 
  • Where do emails to your careers email address go? How often are they answered? 
  • How are you prioritising communication channels?

One of the most common challenges recruiters face is trying to reply to everyone. One of the ways recruiters are overcoming this challenge is using a chatbot to handle repetitive questions and provide instant responses to candidates. 

When Airbus implemented their recruitment chatbot, it was so successful that they removed their careers email address from the website just 5 weeks after going live with the chatbot. 

7. Where are the easy fixes you can apply to make your candidate experience better? 

The great news is that there are some easy fixes you can make to improve your candidate experience. Once you’ve walked through the steps of the different candidate journeys you should be able to identify these easy fixes.

We’ve also listed some commonly found easy fixes that you could do today include: 

  1. Check your job descriptions, evaluate if they are clear and informative
  2. Do an overview of the emails you’re sending candidates. Make sure they are consistent in tone and offer clarity to the candidate. 
  3. Check if your careers site is mobile friendly

Time how long it takes for your careers site pages to load as slow loading times can lead candidates to bounce. You can use this tool from Google to measure how well your site loads.

Catherine Munnelly

Catherine Munnelly