5 ways to use text recruiting to continue conversations with candidates

May 29, 2019 - Cat DiStasio

We found one more way to have conversations with candidates. Well, we didn’t actually find it. Text messaging has been around for quite some time.

But text messaging is on the rise in the recruiting industry and it’s no wonder why. Like chat and email, text messaging is a communication channel that candidates already use on a daily basis so they are comfortable and familiar with the technology. Add in the fact that candidates like it and it helps improve the candidate experience and strengthen your employer brand, and it’s clear that text messaging is a must in recruiting.

Text recruiting may even help you reach more candidates than your other digital channels. Gartner’s research shows that candidates open and read only about 20% of the emails that recruiters send via LinkedIn, while the texting platforms anecdotally report response rates of 60 to 70%. At this point in the recruiting game, text recruiting is a no-brainer. It’s the next natural step in the evolution of digital conversations.

Like any new trend, you need to know how to put text recruiting to work for you. For maximum results, here are five things you need to know about using text messages to communicate with candidates in your pipeline.

Be considerate

Ask job seekers before you text them. Unsolicited text messages are an easy way to alienate top talent so you want to get their permission up front. And don’t worry, they’ll probably say yes. Over 70% of job seekers say they want to receive targeted job opportunities via text.

It’s also important to think about the timing of your text messages. When it comes to the time of day, 14% of job seekers say it’s unprofessional for recruiters to text outside of regular business hours and most would prefer to receive texts from recruiters between 8:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. Although, this may vary depending on the schedules of your candidates. For example, nurses who work evening shifts might not mind an evening text. Lastly, keep the length and frequency of your texts on a tight leash as well. Short, efficient messages sent only when necessary are more likely to improve your candidate experience.

Re-engage past applicants in your database

Your past applicant database can be a goldmine of talent if engaged correctly. And text recruiting can be a simple way to keep your candidate pool engaged after they’ve been passed over for a position. Many applicants aren’t a fit for the position they initially apply for but may be well suited for openings down the road. Stay in touch with these candidates by using text messages to share information about new openings or other company news that is relevant to their job search.

Invite job seekers to events

Using text recruiting for invitations is an emerging best practice. With simple text messages, you can invite job seekers to virtual career fairs and other online employment events, or even an online chat with a live recruiter. This strategy plays perfectly with how we use text messaging socially to invite friends and family to upcoming social events. Instead of texting “dinner at 9pm tomorrow night,” you can instead send this message to a job seeker: “Come chat with our recruiters in online hiring event next week at noon. Are you in?” This is a good opportunity to let job seekers know your team is available to chat through various communication channels including online events. This will help attract job seekers who have many employment options in front of them.

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Continue the conversation

Text recruiting can also be paired with chatbots through automated texts. You can continue a chatbot conversation by setting up automated text messages to follow up after a job seeker interacts with a chatbot, whether they interacted with a live recruiter or not. If a candidate leaves their phone number, recruiters can use text recruiting to follow up with personalized messages. “Hey Joe, I noticed you chatted with our recruiting chatbot yesterday. Did you need more information about the job openings at Brazen?” An automated response from an FAQ bot is a valuable interaction for job seekers, who are accustomed to being ghosted after submitting their application.

Connect where candidates are

Successful recruiters source candidates where they are. They understand candidates’ behavior and anticipate their next move. Like the rest of us, job seekers are often using multiple connected devices and platforms throughout their day, from their smartphone to their laptop, from Twitter to LinkedIn to email. We’re all inundated with information from all sides, and it can be tough to keep up. An omnichannel approach to communication with candidates is the answer. When text messaging is used in conjunction with email and other channels, your chances of getting attention from ideal candidates improves dramatically.

Text me later

More and more recruiters are adopting text messaging as a communication tool, and it’s exciting to watch the results. Candidates seem to appreciate the quick, personal interactions and companies in various industries report improvements in speed and quality of hires as a result of text messaging. Text recruiting is the next frontier in modern talent acquisition and we’ll stay on top of the best practices to help you compete for top talent in your industry.

Now that you understand how to use text recruiting to improve your results, click over to this article to learn how to get the most out of your recruiting chatbot.

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