How to Develop Candidate-Centric Recruiting Strategies

HR leaders and executive recruiters could be facing big changes in terms of how they attract and keep talent in this candidate-driven economy, according to a newly released Jobvite report. Let’s take a closer look.

August 20, 2018 – The recruiting world is changing. Candidates expect to engage where they live – on their mobile devices and through whatever channel they’re currently engaged with, from video to chat platforms to social media networks. But it’s not just about the channel; it’s about the approach. Candidates expect fast, personalized, one-on-one communication that mirrors authentic conversation.

With unemployment at a 17-year low, candidates these days pick companies – not vice versa. And prospects are quick to reject companies that are failing to innovate, and that’s a reality few enterprises can afford, according to a new report by Jobvite, a San Matteo, CA-based software and recruiting company.


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Talent acquisition and executive search leaders’ jobs are getting more and more complex by the day. In fact, recruiters and talent professionals in companies of all sizes and industries are facing similar challenges in the global war for quality talent.

Top 4 Challenges Recruiters Face

One of the key challenges is simply getting the best talent to apply to your company, according to multiple leading search consultants. “With an increasingly competitive landscape, how do you stand out from the other companies?” asked the Jobvite report. “It’s now even harder to bring onboard quality new hires, given they have so many options to choose from.”

The second challenge is building talent pipelines and nurturing passive candidates, which can dramatically reduce your time to fill. “The question then becomes: How do you keep these passive candidates engaged with your brand so that when a position does open up they are ready to jump on it?” said Jobvite.

Related: 18 Lean Recruiting Tips and Tricks Heading into Summer

Third, speed is an issue, as hiring organizations are constantly looking for new ways to quickly move candidates through the hiring process. “Maybe reqs aren’t getting posted in a timely manner, or teams are spending too much time sifting through applications instead of actually building relationships with candidates,” said the report.


Big Challenges Ahead for Recruiting and Talent Sector
Across many parts of the globe, 2018 has started with a job market as robust as any in recent years. It’s been so strong that recruiters are being forced to get creative in order to fill all the position mandates coming their way. And they’re not the only ones. 


And last, at the heart of it all is communication. Are your hiring managers engaged? Is there visibility into the candidate journey? Is everyone on the same page with everything from candidate requirements and job descriptions to organizational hiring goals? If you’re not communicating well as a team internally, you’re already at a disadvantage to effectively communicate with candidates, said Jobvite.

Candidate-Centric Approach to Recruiting

As the market shifts, so should your recruiting tactics. “To efficiently attract and hire the best talent and move the needle on time to fill metrics, leading brands are embracing a candidate-centric recruiting model – one that focuses on ensuring every interaction and conversation is fast, flawless and focused,” the Jobvite report said. “This is an evolution, not a revolution. No need to start from scratch or ditch everything you already have in place. Instead, it’s about making incremental changes to your recruiting process that will attract candidates, get your teams engaged and ultimately reduce your time to fill.”

Related: Close the Book on Searches and Hire the Best Candidates Quickly

Jobvite said that today’s market pressures call for a candidate-centric approach to recruiting: one that’s fast (even real time) and that reaches candidates on their own turf and on their own terms.

“Instead of being transactional, it’s relational,” the report said. “And instead of managing requisitions, you’re focused on conversational recruiting tactics that serve up an unbeatable candidate experience.” It’s a strategy that flips the traditional administrative-centric model to one where candidates are at the center of the process. “From the first time a candidate lands on your career website, to their first day on the job, you’re continuously engaging with them.” This is “continuous candidate engagement,” said Jobvite.

Related: This Recruiter’s Top Five Secrets for Landing Candidates

With a candidate-centric model in place, Jobvite said, Dollar Shave Club was able to decrease time-to-fill by 47 percent, and Accent Care decreased time-to-fill by five days and increased its talent pool by an astonishing 7,000 percent: from 6,600 candidates to 473,000 candidates.

Four Steps Towards a New Model

To help companies move toward a candidate-centric model, Jobvite shared the following strategies:

1. Assess your career website.

First impressions are everything, so put yourself in the candidate’s shoes and try applying for a job on your career site. Does it take less than two minutes to apply, or does it require multiple steps? How does it work on mobile? Minimal effort to apply translates to higher applicant rates.


Retaining New Hires Now Seen As a Critical Issue
Retaining new hires is on the minds of leaders at the vast majority of companies these days which provides advisory services and recruitment services for middle to upper-level management. Ninety percent of the executives surveyed said this is an issue for their companies. 


2. Build a talent pool and keep candidates warm.

Keep it simple, enabling employees to easily share job postings via social media and providing candidates with multiple ways to opt in to your email list. Create segmented talent pools for different roles you’re trying to fill and keep your candidates warm by continually engaging with them one-on-one, through all possible channels.

Related: Recruiters Leveraging More Tools to Engage Candidates

3. Streamline the candidate journey.

Determine where your recruiting bottlenecks are: Is it taking the hiring manager a long time to get back to you? Are enough applicants applying? Do candidates have an easy way to check their application status? Is the whole process optimized on mobile? Identify the hurdles, then start prioritizing resources to tackle them.

4. Support clear communication within hiring team.

Make it easy for candidates, recruiters and hiring managers to connect with each other from anywhere with 100 percent digital and mobile engagement. Also consider your process; make it standard practice to set up a meeting with your hiring manager to agree on candidate criteria and expectations around timing, experience, salary and so on.

Related: Why Finding Effective Leaders Remains a Challenge

Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor; and Andrew W. Mitchell, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media

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