According to a CareerBuilder study there are five major technology-related barriers that can kill your candidate experience and your chances of landing great talent.
“Technology can be your greatest ally or enemy when you’re interacting with job candidates,” said Rosemary Haefner, Vice President of Human Resources at CareerBuilder.
“Job seekers today expect the application process to be fast, informative, more personalised – and mobile-optimised. The more in-demand one’s skill set is, the less likely the job seeker will be to jump through hoops. What the study shows us is companies that have a complex application process and don’t have the technology in place to routinely capture and re-engage candidates are at a competitive disadvantage.”
The five roadblocks identified by the study, which is part of a larger report titled “How Candidate Experience is Transforming HR Technology,” are:
1: Failing to capture interested candidates
Not all job seekers may have the time to apply for a position when they first come across it. According to the study, 39 per cent of job seekers feel the ability to leave their contact information with an employer and apply later is extremely or very important.
More than half (57 per cent) of HR professionals who answered the survey don’t use any tools to capture candidates who didn’t apply to their jobs, so there are a considerable number of missed opportunities to connect with more elusive talent. Only 23 per cent of HR professionals use a shortened version of an application to gather candidate information.
2: Failing to re-engage applicants
Another challenge HR is facing is maintaining relationships with viable candidates who weren’t hired, but could be a good fit for a job opening down the road. More than one-third of HR professionals reported that they don’t re-engage job candidates who weren’t offered a role – generally because they have moved on to the most current applicants or because no one has time to do so. While 38 per cent reported that they re-engage candidates every six months or more often, a significant number aren’t tapping into ready-made talent pools that have already expressed interest in their companies. Additionally, job seekers welcome continued communications. Two in five would like to receive emails about new opportunities opening up at companies.
3: Automating responses
While automated responses have become a popular means to inform candidates that the company received their application, many candidates (39 per cent) feel it’s not enough. Sixty-two per cent of job seekers expect more personalised communications. Sixty-seven per cent even expect a phone call from a recruiter after submitting an application.
4: Limiting applications to the desktop
Mobile technology has fueled the expectation that the job search experience should be the same whether you are on a desktop or mobile device. However, nearly half (46 per cent
of HR professionals don’t offer candidates the option of accessing their ATS via a mobile device, mostly due to technical or resource constraints. Although one-third reported that they saw a bigger drop-off rate because their ATS was not mobile-optimised, only 24 per cent
of all HR professionals think the ability to apply to a job via a mobile device should be considered part of the candidate experience. This raises a serious concern in light of the fact that when job-seekers can’t apply via a mobile device, 65 per cent
said they rarely return to their desktop to finish the application.
5: Using a complex application process
The study found 53 per cent
of HR professionals feel a long application process is good as it weeds out less enthusiastic or less qualified applicants. However it also weeds out highly skilled, currently employed talent who are less likely to tolerate filling out multiple pages. Sixty per cent of job seekers said they have begun an online application, but ultimately didn’t finish it due to how long and complex it was.
More than half of HR professionals said their application process takes more than 20 minutes to complete. Nearly three in 10 job seekers believe the application process should take 10 minutes or less; 62 per cent said it should take no more than 20 minutes. Thirty-seven per cent of HR professionals said they typically ask more than 15 questions during their application process. Half of job seekers said there should be no more than 10 questions.
A lot of time and money are invested in developing a candidate experience by organisations keen to keep their talent pipelines flowing, but is that investment being hindered by those organisations technology or lack thereof?