Too many employers are fishing for employees in far-off ponds, while at the same time ignoring the big pool of applicants sitting right on their doorsteps.
Translation: Employers too often focus on using Monster, HotJobs or some niche job board to attract applicants, but they let their own career web sites fall into disrepair.
“Corporate web sites are the biggest missed opportunity” for employer recruiting efforts, said Matthew Adam, VP of NAS Recruitment Communications, at Monday's SHRM Annual Conference. “It’s your biggest touchpoint with applicants … your biggest opportunity to increase your applicant-to-close ratio.”
Yet studies show that 92% of applicants who go online to find jobs drop off before applying.
“Your web site should be a self-selecting tool—bring the right people in, keep the wrong people out,” said Adam. He offered four suggestions for improving career web sites:
- Benchmark your site against your direct competition.
- Benchmark your site against best practices.
- Put your site to the test. Ask employees/friends to visit it acting as if they’re applicants.
- Develop a targeted “microsite” that focuses only on your company’s jobs and has its own unique web address (see box below).
Also, be ready to add new bells and whistles to your site to keep up with the Joneses. Currently, most employers’ career sites give visitors two options: Fill out an application or leave the site. But that’s going to change, if it’s not already.
So what should your career page include now? Best practices, said Adam, say it should include:
- Company culture information (awards, diversity, community service)
- Comprehensive features such as pre-screening tools, saved candidate profile, e-mail a friend, requisition number tracking, searchable job positions, one click to apply.
- College recruiting section
- Link from home page
- (transactional, relational, environmental)
“In the future, you’re going to provide more options to applicants,” said Adam. Examples: Allow them to add your jobs to their personal home page; subscribe to your “talent network” e-letter or RSS feed; subscribe to your job blog or participate in live chats with your recruiters.