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Recruitment, it's like being dumped or buying a pair of jeans, no?

Jeans on the rack

Jeans on the rack, ready to go…

Understanding how and when jobseekers apply for advertised positions can give employers a significant advantage when it comes to hiring the right person and any advantage that can be eeked out is not to be taken lightly.

Monday, as if proof was needed, may not be a day that employees relish but it is the day employers should use to advertise positions according to data compiled by Guru – a UK based company who have helped companies from global world beaters to SMEs to hire the best staff.

Employers do so to ensure vacancies are optimised at peak times, and trends for mobile usage, application trends and audience relevancy – spanning jobseeker trends – show that eight per cent of all applications are made between noon and mid-afternoon on Tuesdays with Wednesday and Thursday also popular days.

Applying for jobs via mobile devices is an untapped field but as it remains difficult to upload a CV via a mobile device, it is unsurprising that just 3.3% of applications are done this way. Despite LinkedIn’s launch of the “Apply with LinkedIn” button, the continuing inability to save your CV to a mobile device and poor website accessibility are the chief factors behind this figure.

However, the most interesting stat in this recent survey shows that just over one in 10 applications are highly relevant with an alarming 83% not suitable at all.

In effect, for every 100 applications an employer gets, 90 will be useless.  Most employers want to be able to pick from at least 5 eligible candidates so that means that they will have to screen 50 CVs and disappoint 45 people. No matter how gently you let someone down it still doesn’t leave them feeling warm and fuzzy about your employer brand!

So whilst Guru have highlighted some very relevant stats on when you should post your jobs to get more applications, the question remains, is it productive to advertise your jobs at all? Yes, you will receive applications but what is the cost of screening 50 applications in terms of man-hours and employer brand erosion?

When I want to buy a new pair of jeans or a pair of shoes I will go into the city, target the stores that I know sell the products I want and pick out the ones I like the look of.  I’ll try a few on for a size and pick the ones that fit best. Why is recruitment any different?

If I know that LinkedIn or Twitter has a huge database of people who are likely to have the skills I am looking for (over 23% of the working population in the UK alone are on LinkedIn) why don’t I go there, pick out the ones I am most interested in and “try them on for size”?

Ok, so I recognize that candidates can’t just be “bought”, they may or may not want to work for me and that recruitment is a two-way decision making process but the candidates who apply for my jobs may not end up wanting to work for me either?

After 9 years of advertising and screening applicants to fill my jobs I turned my personal recruiting process on its head 4 years ago when I started seeking out my target candidates on social networks and the open web. The control that I felt was amazing; I chose who I wanted to reach out to and “screen” and the candidates that rejected me still felt “warm and fuzzy” about being approached to work for my client.  Whilst it is true that you have to reach out to many “passive” candidates to find enough that are interested in making a move to you or your client right now, you can ensure a much higher quality level by accurately targeting the “stars” who have all the right skills.

The candidates who don’t work out come away with a much more positive understanding of you or your client’s business and are definitely more likely to refer the opportunity to a friend. If you reject an applicant from a job-board or your career site are they really likely to say “no worries, I must tell all my friends about that great company”?

Girl after being dumped

Recruitment, it’s like being dumped?!?

Have you ever recommended an ex that dumped you on to a friend? If someone chatted you up, was cute but not quite your type, I reckon you are much more likely to refer them on to your single friend, don’t you?

A survey conducted by Jobvite in July of this year found that the amount of companies in the United States planning to use social networks to find job candidates had risen to 90% from 83% in just 12 months with two thirds of employers saying they had successfully filled jobs using social networking.

The question isn’t whether you use social media and the web to recruit, it is how well you use it. I spent 2 years slowly teaching myself the skills that were required to source the web for candidates, trying out a multitude of courses and buying scores of “boolean cheat sheets” that did not work. We created the Black Belt in Internet Recruitment course to help other recruiters learn what took us years in only a few days. The Blue Belt in Internet Recruitment course is the core sourcing component and will teach you how to access all 120 million profiles on LinkedIn, reach out by email to anyone you find on the web and mine Twitter, Google+, blog sites and numerous other sources for quality candidate data. Do you want a database of nearly one billion candidates?  We’re running an online course over three weeks commencing on Tuesday 18th October. Find out more and register here.

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