Helping the Full Employment Economy Work in Favor of Talent Acquisition

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The More You Know About Candidates the More Power You Have to Win Them

Where do the candidates you want to hire spend time? They’re not frequenting job boards, for certain, but they are online. Social media is one of the most obvious places to find them. Social offers tools that help you learn more about the people you want to engage with.

If you treat content marketing as an important tool, you can develop more ways to learn what makes even the most passive candidates tick. Social lets you run targeted ads to promote your content with the demographic that you choose.

RELATED: Be the Recruitment Process Leader You’d Want to Follow

Knowledge is definitely power in a full employment economy. Once you capture their attention, one click can drive them to your hiring site. With better landing pages and better offers, such as relevant industry ebooks and webinars, candidates are more likely to give you information in exchange for the free download.

You could learn whether or not they’re happy in their current job, their level of education, the skills they’re most proud of and even personal interests that give insight into their personality.

Speaking of demographics, don’t discount independent contractors in your quest for better candidates. When there’s a talent shortage, they can fill vacancies quickly and bring a honed set of skills to the table. They might have a network of other independent contractors, as well.

The HR Department recommends these steps for making the most of contractors:

  • Write and sign a contract to set the parameters of the work relationship
  • Offer quick-start training to help contractors hit the ground running
  • Help them acclimate and become part of the team so they don’t feel like outsiders
Talent acquisition

The talent acquisition funnel should be a top priority now.

More and Better Candidate Lead Generation Strategies Bring Candidates to You

All of your hard work sourcing candidates has one important goal, and that’s lead generation. The better your lead generation, the higher the quality of leads and the better your chances of keeping them in the talent acquisition funnel.

Content marketing is arguably the most important lead generation tool that you’ve got. It can’t work well without structure and a budget, and that requires executive buy-in. That’s a challenge for many in talent acquisition, but it is worth the time and effort it takes to educate the C Suite about the value of content.

It’s not a question of blogging for the sake of it. Every blog post, YouTube video, whitepaper, infographic, quiz, and ebook that you produce is an opportunity to engage with candidates and generate leads.

Content Marketing Institute offers up 6 ways to explain the value of content to executives and increase the odds of getting a better budget:

  1. It gives your company a way to connect with candidates using topics that matter to them.
  2. Candidates want to know about you, not just view a list of jobs that are open. Storytelling is a growing theme in content.
  3. Outbound marketing is pushy. In a full-employment economy, candidates have no reason to tolerate being pushed. Content is inbound and it gives the target audience something of value
  4. It’s a smart investment with a high ROI as long as you commit to a genuine strategy and have the budget to support it.
  5. Content is a relationship builder
  6. Putting the shoe on the other foot, executives might respond to thinking about their preferred strategy and how they’d respond to it. Chances are, they prefer engaging content marketing over pushy ads.
Talent acquisition

Are you tracking candidate engagement? You should be.

Full Employment Has Probably Affected Your Talent Acquisition KPIs

Chances are, the full employment economy has had an effect on your KPIs. If nothing else, time to fill and, accordingly, cost per hire have ramped up along with employment. When the market is flooded with applicants, you can practically toss job ads into the wind and get a stack of applicants for your efforts. Now, efforts are much more tightly focused.

From job posting to application, the timeline has probably expanded quite a bit. Cost per hire might increase, especially if you try and try again using the same methods as when the candidate pool is swimming with people looking for work.

Thing is, you can improve time to fill, cost per hire and even the number of qualified candidate per hire using a different strategy. With a new strategy, you might also need to add more metrics to the ones you already track.

Here are just a few to consider:

  • High performer attrition
  • Internal hire or promotion rate
  • Internal promotions as opposed to external hires
  • Employee referral rate
  • Job offer acceptance rate
  • Hiring process satisfaction rate
  • 90-day new hire success

If you’re using content marketing, and you should, Vertical Measures adds these KPIs:

  • Traffic volume: how many visits, and from which sources
  • Engagement: page views, bounce rate, time on the page
  • Content popularity: top folders, landing pages, most frequent exit pages
  • Content effectiveness: lead generation forms completed, email signups, click through to job ads

Metrics are only as good as their relevance to the current hiring climate. If you’re rethinking talent acquisition, you should rethink your KPIs, as well.

A Killer Job Ad Engages When Attention Spans are Short

When people aren’t searching for job ads, the time you’ve got with their eyes on the page takes a significantly higher priority. Ordinary job ads don’t cut it. Hiring sites are much more interactive now and job ads answer a candidate’s questions quickly while tempting them with offers that resonate in their industry. For that, you need an expert’s help.

So many job ads read like a generic classified because the people writing them don’t really know the job. Sure, they know the job requirements. They copied them from a list. But as an example, to capture the attention of an IT person and really engage, you have to speak the language and they can never question that fact.

It’s time to enlist help within the department you’re hiring for. Instead of a bullet point list of qualifications, requirements, and benefits, collaborate on writing the job ad. Better yet, hand over that responsibility entirely.

Here’s what Better Team recommends:

  • Use a powerful job title, but skip terms like “guru” that nobody searches
  • Tease the reader with bits of information in the intro
  • Tell your story so they can relate to the company, not just a random job
  • Explain why working for your company is awesome
  • Promote the location, too
  • Circle back to remind them why they should apply
  • Make the application process clear as a bell

A great job ad doesn’t help if applying is a pain in the neck. Go through the process as an applicant. Wherever you find snags, they’ll find snags and they might back out.

Technology Such as Programmatic Recruitment Should Be Your Best Friend

Talent acquisition technology in the 21st Century gives you better results with less effort. That’s because much of it is based on collecting the right data, analyzing it so that it’s useful, applying that knowledge to an ever-improving process and automating everything that doesn’t require a human’s hands.

Programmatic recruitment is one of those technologies that is changing hiring as you know it. Using data about your target audience and the job itself, programmatic determines the best locations for your job ads. Because more of your ads hit the mark, it maximizes your job ad budget with much less waste. It then makes the ad buy without any intervention from you, not unless you want to. What’s more, the effectiveness of programmatic frees up more of your budget to allocate toward jobs that are harder to fill.

Real-time candidate matching is another technological advance that’s gaining momentum quickly. At what other time in your career could you pair a job ad with a job candidate based on numerous criteria and then enjoy the benefit of automatic updates when the candidate’s skills or the job requirements change.

Automation doesn’t equal fewer jobs for the talent industry. In fact, it helps you work better, meet the needs of candidates more consistently and provide better customer service. After all, candidates have never been more like prospective customers than when they’re already employed and relatively satisfied.

The full employment economy has been a buzzword for a few years now. Some of the effects are predictable. Fewer job seekers mean fewer applicants using traditional methods. Now, talent acquisition requires leads, content marketing, a heavy dose of engagement and executive buy-in for a healthier hiring budget.

Some of the effects were not. Usually, when the odds are in a candidate’s favor, they can command higher wages and more benefits. Employers scramble to do what it takes to keep employees and tempt new ones. That’s not happening, at least not yet, according to Business Insider.

With all of that said, there’s another issue on the horizon. Jeff Cox for CNBC says the employment market has overshot the full employment mark. Hovering slightly over 4 percent, it’s probably not sustainable. Even with Federal Reserve policies in place to help stabilize the economy, it could indicate a downward slope ahead for employment and job growth.

What comes up usually comes back down. With a revamped talent acquisition strategy already in the works, you’ll be ready for the next big change when it happens.

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Carole Oldroyd

Carole Oldroyd is a writer and graphic artist living in East Tennessee. Her work has been published in the San Francisco Chronicle, LegalZoom, and numerous other magazines, websites and blogs. When she isn’t writing, she can be found restoring her historic Victorian home piece by piece.

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About Carole Oldroyd

Carole Oldroyd is a writer and graphic artist living in East Tennessee. Her work has been published in the San Francisco Chronicle, LegalZoom, and numerous other magazines, websites and blogs. When she isn’t writing, she can be found restoring her historic Victorian home piece by piece.

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