talent recruitment in the digital age: the dos and don'ts.

05/11/2020 07:27

Our parents always say that looking for a job used to be really simple. All they had to do was walk into a shop, ask for a job, and they will get it almost immediately. However, that is not how it works anymore. Now, though you can walk into a shop and ask for a job, they will probably end up referring you to their website to apply for a job online instead.

Today, we live in a post-digital world, and we must all learn how to function and survive in it. Digital technology has encompassed every aspect of our lives, no matter how big or small. In fact, you’ve most likely been led to this page through our digital marketing efforts or from a quick search on the internet.

The world of work is undergoing a major shift that is largely driven by rapid technological innovation and digitalisation. HR professionals, now more than ever, will need to move much faster in embracing data, technology and digital transformation. Despite the obvious potential, the HR industry still pretty much operates in a traditional framework, with many putting digital adoption as an afterthought.

However, the pandemic has exacerbated this gap and made it more obvious than before.

Employees, especially those from the younger generations, expect to be able to engage with each other using new modes of digital communication. Instead of emails, they want to speak through video conferencing, chats and even project management softwares like Slack. Job seekers are also more digitally-savvy now, with more and more using search, job portals and social media websites.

If you are still wondering how to effectively engage and attract high performing talent in this digital age, here are some recruitment tips to help you navigate the increasingly complex hiring environment.

effective digital recruitment methods

1. do build a strong online brand presence

The internet has certainly made it easier than ever for candidates to research more about what it is like to work for a company. If there's only negative information about your company on the web, quality candidates will almost immediately disregard you as a potential employer and move on.

If you haven’t already, consider building a mobile-friendly recruitment website that provides your candidates with information on what it is like to work in your company as well as resources on job applications. This can include job descriptions, what candidates can expect out of the job, and attractive benefits that will be offered.

You can also start a blog on your company's website to demonstrate your organisational culture and the benefits of working with you using anecdotes from your employees. Gather testimonials from happy advocates within your organisation, and share them on your career website and social media channels. Employee stories are most powerful and impactful when they are authentic, and are more credible than what the company has to say about itself.

Leverage employee review sites such as Glassdoor, and actively encourage your employees to post reviews on how you are doing as an employer. The transparency and honesty that come through from such reviews will allow potential candidates to form a more accurate perception of the kind of organisation you are. This will help them better manage their expectations and might lead to potential employee referrals.

recruitment methods in the digital age

2. don't complicate your recruitment process

With COVID-19, companies have implemented cost-cutting measures such as hiring freezes and retrenchment. This has resulted in a surge in the number of job seekers in the market. Many hiring managers have thus found the recruiting process to be more time-consuming than before, having to filter through the increasing number of job applications.

However, though recruiting talent can be an exhausting process, having more resumes to review is definitely better than not having enough choices.

Consider how difficult it is for people on the job hunt and the common problems they usually face when applying for a job. Candidates usually send their resume to a plethora of companies that fit their field, and then become selective after they start hearing back from recruiters or employers.

With online job portals, candidates can simply search for available jobs and apply to their preferred employers directly. Hence, to ensure you continue to attract quality talent, ensure that you are present on these job sites so that candidates are aware that you are hiring and can easily apply to your organisation.

You should also ensure that job advertisements posted have the right amount of information and are optimised for job search. This is so that your advertisements can reach more relevant applicants, thereby allowing you to receive applications from candidates who you actually want to reach. Job advertisements should also include quick links to allow candidates to learn more about your company's culture and structure.

Don't use a job application format that turns candidates away. If you're still using an antiquated online application process that requires candidates to manually fill out every job they've had since high school and every address they've had since college, consider changing this. Many candidates will simply give up on the application process and move on to the next potential employer.

If you do not need those information, discard long job application processes. Just require a digitally submitted resume and cover letter (if necessary). You should also ensure you automate responses to keep candidates updated on what to expect after they have completed the application process. This can be as simple as confirming their application and/or providing a timeframe on when they can expect to be notified.

automation in recruitment process

3. use social media, but don't spy

There are many ways that social media platforms can be integrated into the hiring process. First, you should use social media such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to spread the word when you have a job opening or to promote your employer brand. LinkedIn, the global professional social network, is however the industry’s main channel for networking and hiring.

Though Facebook is seen to have more users as compared to LinkedIn - an astounding 2.38 billion active users vs 630 million - LinkedIn remains the most popular method for recruitment.

It is also important to note that the preference and usage of social media networks varies by generation. For example, generation-z employees are seen to use Instagram, while millennials report using platforms such as LinkedIn, Facebook as well as search engines to look for jobs.

Every single social networking site is different and requires a different approach for your recruitment strategies to be successful. Employers should first determine who they are trying to attract and reach out to and develop a social recruiting strategy to target that particular audience. Companies can also strive to personalise responses and reply to questions and posts in a timely manner, while concurrently ensuring that content is relevant and interesting to what your target audience wants.

Finally, it's fine to look up candidates' social media profiles before interviewing them, but do take what you see with a pinch of salt and not pass judgements too quickly.

Through their posts and comments, you can generally ascertain their character, mindset and values. Use these insights to look for positive things that could potentially make this candidate a good fit for your company, as opposed to criticising the candidate based on your personal value standards.

If you nitpick at every single candidate, you'll end up depleting more resources and time looking for the ideal one, which may not exist in today’s labour market environment.

Learn more about the HR technology we use at Randstad and how you can access them by working with us.