Every day more candidates are using smartphones and tablets to look for jobs - fact. So why are so many recruiters moving so slowly to capitalize on talent attraction via mobile? I believe the obstacle is it feels like a big project full of unknowns.
How can the unknowns be answered and the scale of the project shrank?
Todays popular option taken by most employers, is to ignore mobile, miss out on the candidate potential. Eventually these recruiters will have to tackle going mobile in unfavorable circumstances - i.e when the volume of mobile jobseekers is so high you are desperate to target them, or your boss and peers are asking why its not already been done? (In Europe and the US I expect this moment to be 6 to 12 months away)
My preferred option is to take a lean approach to the initiative of mobile recruiting. Very briefly, the lean involves experimenting to prove your assumptions are right, as quickly as possible and evolving a solution that delivers return quickly. Read more about lean as a methodology here.
So what is the biggest assumption surrounding mobile recruiting?
I would suggest the first assumption is talent want to look for and even apply for your jobs from smartphones and tablets. Obviously all the data suggests this is a given, but many recruiters have a doubts specially any many of the stats discussed are for e-commerce not recruiting.
I have blogged about the popularity of mobile job seeking across different jobs types in the past but that does not give every recruiter the confidence to sign off on a big project. The feedback I get is "oh well their a huge household brand" or "our HQ is not in silicon valley its in Coventry, our job seekers might not be mobile".
The lean answer is to learn using data from your own recruiting experience. So the lean experiment needs to give you insights into which of your roles that attract mobile jobseekers to answer just uncertainties such as:
- Maybe mobile is biggest with technical IT roles?
- Is the sweet spot jobs where people have no desk like nurses or drivers?
- Do senior managers use their mobile to look for jobs?
- Or maybe its all of them?
Finally wouldn't it be great to have data from your own experience to provide the business case for investing time and money into mobile?
Time for your first lean experiment. This is designed to quickly, easily and cost effectively prove the above assumptions, clarify those uncertainty and give you data to make decisions with for your next move.
Using a product like Pocket Recruit you can very quickly launch a number of "job landing pages" that represent individual jobs. A job landing page is a url that sells one job and has a big apply call to action. Ideally you would carefully select a variety of roles to create job landing pages. Armed with a set of job web pages that work beautifully on desktop, tablet and mobile the next step is to promote these web links via social media and your other promotional channels.
Then sit back and wait for the numbers. To prove the assumption the analytical data should look at :
- What % of visits did the different jobs get on desktop compared to smartphone or tablet?
- What % of clicks on the apply button were on desktop compared to smartphone or tablet?
- What was the difference in the above two metrics for different jobs at different levels, skills, departments?
An experiment like this does not require enormous volumes of visitors to give you insights. You do not need mobilize all your jobs, even 10 jobs would give you great learnings - as long as you promote the job landing pages.
To experiment and learn fast with job landing pages you don't even need ATS integration. To prove the job seeker behavior on mobile is to start an application you only need an "Apply" call to action. When the apply button is clicked (or tapped) log the event and redirect the candidate to same apply process you have today, granted the candidate on mobile is unlikely to be able to finish the apply, but you have captured their intent and gathered the valuable learning. The experience for the candidate is no worse that the experience without the job landing page!
Obviously this approach is not designed to be a permanent solution, far from it, you may only run a small number of job landing pages for 4 to 6 weeks. After the experiment you now have real data for your jobs, in your market and can make a fully educated decision surrounding your next step in going mobile.
A lean experiment like this should cost less than employing a consultant to suggest you should do a big mobile project and you will get the evidence based insights from your market.
After you have learned from the job landing page lean experiment the next step is look at the data and decide how to what to do next.
There are many assumptions and learnings to still capture. By this stage you have the knowledge of which of your roles do best on mobile. Step two is to create a targeted career site (microsite) for those job seekers. The targeted career site should offer mobile apply and potentially ATS integration.
This is smaller task with fewer stakeholders than approaching your entire career site, it focuses on the high return areas and most importantly it gives you the opportunity to learn more. With the targeted career site you can experiment with more jobs, learn what related content increases the likelihood of job seekers applying and how to optimize the application process to generate more of the results you want. This is the topic of a future blog posts.