With near-perfect unemployment, we are truly living in a candidate’s job market, and the relationship between job seekers and recruiters has shifted. Finding and hiring top talent fast isn’t a linear start-to-finish process. Instead, it requires a continuous cycle of engagement — and the candidates are setting the terms. I’ve seen it time and time again that the pressure is on for recruiters to meet candidates where they are — offering the right touch, at the right time — to guide the candidate towards the perfect role, even if it it isn’t listed yet.
Mobile usage has now reached record highs, accounting for nearly 70 percent of daily screen-time. To reach job seekers through this new channel, forward-thinking recruiters are reaching out to candidates (especially younger generations) via text. This new channel for candidate engagement may initially feel too personal for long-time practitioners, but the numbers don’t lie.
While the average open rate for email remains strong at more than 20 percent, mobile text commands a whopping 98 percent read rate — a significantly higher engagement. Studies show that 95 percent of texts will be read within three minutes of being sent, with an average response time of just 90 seconds. When used right throughout the recruiting cycle, I believe text can drive more personalized, candidate centric experiences, enabling recruiters to communicate with candidates through the channel that is most comfortable to them.
Texting campaigns have applications across the recruitment cycle:
- Launch pre-apply and nurture campaigns: Recruiters can keep potential candidates engaged by sharing relevant content about company culture, special projects and upcoming events.
- Broadcast job openings: When a new job becomes available, reach potential candidates where they are by sharing that new opening via text. Engaging potential candidates and enabling them to begin the application process immediately from their phone eliminates hurdles that might otherwise prevent them from applying.
- Program chatbots to screen potential candidates: Using chatbot functions such as those found in Jobvite Text, recruiters can build out question trees to engage with potential candidates. Automating these communications helps recruiters quickly identify standout candidates by gathering information such as certifications, work history and willingness to travel.
- Onboard with a personal touch: Keep new hires happy and engaged from signing to day one on the job with a campaign of text messages to build excitement, communicate important onboarding information and answer any questions.
In this moment, text recruiting promises an exceptionally high ROI, especially when recruiting younger generations of talent. I see text opening new opportunities for reaching out to candidates with the right message at the right moment, which means that recruiters incorporating text into their outreach strategy can find better talent faster, reducing time-to-hire, churn and enabling companies to meet their hiring goals.