SmartRecruiters Blog

The 5 Components of an Engaging Career Site

Most of all, it’s helpful to think of the career page as a marketing landing page to convert talented people interested in working with your company.

What makes a great career site? Hmpf. Well a career site is an employment site with job opportunities that answers, ‘Why work together?’ Most of all, it’s helpful to think of it as a marketing landing page to convert talented people interested in working with your company. So what makes an awesome career site?

1. Optimized for mobile: mobile’s approximately half of internet traffic… do you want to lose half your candidates right off the bat?

We know that internet users chose to access the net via their mobile device; there are more mobile devices in the world than people. Everyone is handling business on the go. Desktops are being replaced because of convenience, functionality and efficiency. This means the career site has to be optimized for and designed to accommodate tablet and smartphone users.

2. Rich Media: A picture says a thousand words… and a video has thousands of pictures.

We know that content that visual images receive as much as 90% more engagement than content without pics or vids. Visually stimulating and pleasing images helps to drive traffic and define your company culture. So we know the site needs to have cool pictures and or videos of employees and your work environment. You could even have employee testimonial videos explaining why they love working for you. You can even have the CEO give a brief greeting, then explain the company’s mission statement, but keep it short.

3. Social Media: Where you pass the background check and/or keep the conversation going.

We also know the average web-surfer has an attention of about a minute. If a user visits your site and cannot find what they are looking for within 60 seconds, they will leave and not return. Everything – perks, benefits, mission and opportunities – on the site should be easy to find and read.

We know the site must have cool features.  The world is becoming more “techy” and social and recruiting is a very “techy” and social business. Both recruiters and jobseekers like to use social networks to search, share and connect. This means the trust of your career page messaging is also dependent upon your company social media pages. Don’t be afraid to provide links to your social media pages on your career pages, but make sure the link creates a new tab so the visitor doesn’t leave your career page.

4. User-friendly: make your offerings transparent and accessible.

We know people like things that are easy and simple to use. Let’s make sure navigation is easy. Most sites have the “careers” option buried at the bottom of a dropdown menu. If the goal is to show potential talent your company and allow them to search open positions, then why not make the “careers” or “employment opportunities” hyperlink prominent?  Next the search mechanism should be as easy as entering your location and/or job type, then the visitor sees relevant opportunities. The job search criteria should be easy to select departments and positions based on the skills and types of job duties the user is looking to pursue.

Additionally, make your copy aspirational. For example, MapQuest quickly creates trust and aspiration with this copy on its career page: “If you’re up for a challenge and have the hunger to be part of potentially one of the greatest turnaround stories in the tech industry, MapQuest is the place for you.”

5. Talent is Busy: Reduce the time it takes to express interest in you.

One of the biggest complaints from job seekers is regarding the time it takes to apply for a job. It can take 30-45 minutes for a single application! Job seekers are extremely frustrated with this and all of the different recruiter’s networks they must join to apply for a position on a job board. In order to set your career site apart from the competition, give the user two or three simple options to connect – like their LinkedIn profile, public Facebook profile or uploading of a resume. If you have assessments included in your application process, consider moving them further down the recruitment funnel, or at least streamline them so they are not as long and drawn out.

Great candidates are paying attention to all the resume and job search advice out there. They expect an engaging work environment, a great company culture and an efficient application process. Careers sites make up over 23% of all applicant hiring decisions, 2nd only to referrals. Today’s applicants expect companies to be innovative and to treat them well and it all starts with your career site.


Related Resources on Creating Great Career Pages:

  1. Delight Candidates at Every Step
  2. Join the SmartRecruiters Family
  3. Career Pages That Work 
  4. Video Marketing Strategy & Employer Branding
  5. How to Create Customizable, Multi-Language and Mobile-Responsive Career Pages Without IT Resources

Chris Fields

Chris Fields is an HR professional and leadership guy who blogs and dispenses great (not just good) advice at Cost of Work & ResumeCrusade.