Applicant management and E-recruiting – even just two years ago, these were still marginal topics. But today, more and more companies are choosing to search for personnel efficiently over the internet. Company-owned career pages, online job advertisements, and the development of a unique employer brand are ideas more and more companies are considering. But how can you establish a simple applicant management system and ensure you can use it for a competitive advantage over other companies? IT can help.
Employers provide a glimpse into everyday operations
47 percent of employers today post photos from everyday operations on the job. Employees provide first-hand reports about their positions on the site – exactly the sort of thing that interests applicants. There’s a reason the startup Whatchado is a success story. It shows jobs and employees “as they really are.” The internet makes this possible, holding both opportunities and risks for companies.
Impatient by nature…
This represents a fundamental shift for HR departments. If companies want to win the battle to hire the best workers, they have to move away from passively inserting job advertisements and towards active applicant management. Applicants, after all, are impatient by nature. No wonder – they’ve invested quite a bit of time in their CVs and cover letters, and in self-promotion.
Quick reaction times are important
If nothing comes back to them from the company, this can cause major disappointment. Applicants can lose interest quickly, or receive commitments from another company that was able to react faster. According to current studies, an applicant’s patience typically lasts about seven days.
Easier said than done?
This is where the problems start for many companies: they insert expensive text-based ads on current jobs portals. All applicant e-mails then land in a mailbox that gets checked occasionally. This check isn’t necessarily part of everyday operations. Two or three candidates are then invited for an interview. True – you could make things easy on yourself and use an autoresponder – but plenty of employers don’t understand how to work with these, or simply forget to set one up. This means multiple applications might go unanswered. In some cases, a rejection letter never even gets sent out. Applicants are right to expect a minimum level of personal appreciation, after all. If they don’t receive it, they might air their displeasure on social media, where a poor employer image can spread extremely quickly.
Problems with Standards
Many employers forget that in today’s market, they might be the ones wooing new workers, instead of the other way around. More and more job-seekers are using assessment portals like kununu, meinchef, or glassdoor. Companies that want to score there should act in a transparent, professional manner even during the application process. Often, however, this part of the process fails due to very simple standards – antiquated technology, for instance, or time-intensive application forms.
Here are a couple of tips for how you can make the application process as comfortable as possible for new, talented workers:
Make things quick and easy
Submitting an application should be as quick and easy as possible for the applicant. Surveys prove: filling out an online application shouldn’t take more than 10 to 20 minutes. 50 percent of survey participants won’t even apply for a job if the process takes longer than half an hour.
No applications via smartphone
The process should be quick. However, applicants have a hard time imagining applying via smartphone or a tablet PC. Almost 67 percent aren’t interested in the option because displays and keyboards are too small. Applicants don’t, however, want to do without the option of viewing position descriptions on apps and websites. The majority of applicants call these up on mobile devices.
Use applicant management to ensure quick responses
Applicant management includes the entirety of the process, from posting a position to managing applicant data and selecting a new employee. An IT-supported solution can simplify the process, allowing HR departments to save time and money.
Explanations of job functions can be automatically included in job descriptions and published on the company homepage, external job portals, or social media platforms with just a click. A glance at the digital applicant file is all you need to call up all applicant data and all communication with a prospective employee.
Using speed as a competitive Advantage
Automated workflows and reminders provide applicants speedy feedback. This results in a clear competitive advantage for companies battling for the high-potential prospective employees in generations Y and Z.