The recruiter experience matters too. Prioritizing the candidate experience doesn’t mean ignoring the recruiter. Their experience is just as important. As talent acquisition becomes more complex, so does the role of the recruiter and the talent acquisition function. Recruiters must wear multiple hats in order to be successful. No longer just focused on relationship-building or administrative tasks, the modern recruiting function requires a new set of skills and competencies that often seem contradictory.
Just take data analysis and relationship-building as one example. Talent acquisition professionals have to be able to build long-term relationships with candidates, interpret data, sell and market their employer brand, and consider a more flexible workforce – all responsibilities that did not exist a decade ago. While this is great news for recruiters and presents new opportunities, it also makes talent acquisition feel incredibly overwhelming.
Recruiters need help. Only 37% of recruiters understand how to use social media for recruiting efforts, and less than 40% have insight into the source of hire, according to Aptitude Research Partners’ 2017 Hire, Engage, Retain research. Too often, we focus on and invest so heavily in the candidate experience that we lose sight of what matters to recruiters. The recruiter experience is critical to driving efficiency, improving quality of hires, and increasing overall productivity. When recruiters have the tools and information they need, they are more likely to meet their goals and objectives.
Below are some recommendations on strategies and technology solutions that can improve the recruiter experience:
What strategies should you consider?
–Find Your Core Message: Talent acquisition has become increasingly complex. While recruiters are scrambling to learn the next new recruitment marketing technology or trying to master social media recruiting, they often lose sight of what matters most: the message. Inconsistent messaging is confusing. And confused candidates are likely to disengage or not engage at all. To prove this point, Aptitude’s research found that nearly 50% of companies struggle to keep messages simple. Therefore, recruiters need to work with marketers to land on a core message and stick with it through every channel they are recruiting and communicating. Further, recruiters should assess the complexities of their own processes and find ways to create an easier process for individuals to do their work, engage with others, and drive performance.
–Recognize Efforts: We all know about the cobbler’s kids and how they have no shoes. The same can apply to recruiters. They may be excellent at talking to the bullet points of the company’s culture but are they truly living it? It’s very easy to lose sight of culture with so many competing responsibilities, but recruiting teams must invest in constantly aligning their teams to the company culture. Understanding the role of culture in the recruiter experience and helping individuals feel connected and included in the company culture will only improve overall talent acquisition efforts. As recruiters feel recognized for their work and become more integrated into the overall company culture, they’ll be able to speak more authentically about their own culture to candidates, which then becomes more believable and ultimately more attractive to top talent.
–Reevaluate Broken Processes: When something isn’t working, companies need to change it. Recruiters are very aware of the challenges they face when attracting and recruiting talent. Many of the traditional processes need to be reevaluated so that these challenges can be overcome. It may seem tedious, but spend time documenting your process on paper. Who is involved? What tools are used? How long does it take? Only then are you able to truly evaluate both the parts and the whole and find ways to make it better. And if you do make a change, please make sure to measure it to see if your new process is better than your old one.
How can technology enable a positive experience?
–Consider the User Experience: From grocery stores, to the DMV, to technology, everything has a design. And design is everything. But not everything is designed well (sorry, DMV). The same applies to recruitment technology. Recruitment technology is historically complex and difficult to use. Traditional providers have done little to simplify capabilities and make it easy for recruiters to attract and engage candidates. Some of the more innovative technology providers are offering greater simplicity and ease of use in products that resemble the consumer world. So before committing to any technology, ask to speak with current customers to see if the technology is easy to use with a fairly low learning curve.
–Humanize the Experience: Candidates are not the only ones who want to make a human connection during the recruitment process. Recruiters want to connect with candidates – to understand more about them than what you would find on a resume. Prior to recent advancements in HR technology, the recruiter’s job was to meet with candidates either in person or on the phone, and do what they do best: assess. But much of today’s technology eliminates the person-to-person engagement of the past, thereby limiting the role the recruiter plays in the assessment portion of the recruitment process. So, when it comes to technology, recruitment teams should be looking for technology that is personal and provides a way to connect recruiters and candidates.
–Get the Insights: Recruiters are being held more accountable to business leaders. They need to provide insight on the value of the technology they are using and the impact on both recruitment processes and business outcomes. Solutions that can provide quick insights and simple dashboards will help recruiters be successful in achieving these goals. You should be considering KPIs such as conversion rates from job posts, engagement with candidates via online event platforms, and, of course, cost per hire, number of hires per channel, and time to hire.
As more companies prioritize the candidate experience, the recruiter experience should not be ignored. The next blog in this series will focus on the importance of the hiring manager experience.