Long gone are the days when job seekers solely depended on searching through classified ads in newspapers or cold-calling employers in hopes of finding a job opening, but recruiters still face the need to constantly “keep up with the times." Because of smartphones and mobile devices, candidates have the world at their fingertips, which has reformed how job seekers and recruiters interact with and manage job openings.
According to Pew Research Center, about 1 in 10 American adults are “smartphone-only” internet users today – meaning they do own a smartphone with internet capabilities, but they do not have traditional home broadband service (like a desktop or laptop computer). This means that some job seekers out there don’t even have a computer at home to apply for your jobs. So, as job seekers change the devices they use to interact with the digital world, recruitment professionals also need to consider the experience that job seekers have from these various devices as they interact with employer brands and online job applications. Catering to the candidate experience not only leads to more applications, but also saves you time and money, making for a more efficient recruiting and hiring process.
By optimizing your job content, shortening the number of steps or pages in your online application, and creating a responsively-designed application process for the mobile-dependent job seeker, you can open up your reach to a larger pool of quality talent, while increasing application volume and improving CPA.
So, what can you do to improve mobile candidate experience and lower your costs? Let’s look at three common ways to address this question.
Optimizing Your Job Content
Before a job seeker begins the application process, he or she needs to develop interest in the job title. Then, he or she must keep that interest as they are reading the job description. If your job titles aren’t engaging or relevant, or if your job descriptions are too long, or even if you have spelling or formatting issues in either, mobile job seekers are more likely to lose interest and leave the job posting before applying, if they even click on your job at all. The average human attention span is eight seconds. Consider your current jobs. Do they have attention-grabbing job titles? Can a potential applicant read what he or she needs to know about your jobs in eight seconds?
Try using an attention-grabbing, yet still accurate, job title and a short description of the job that is easy for the job seeker to read. Try testing and viewing the character lengths on your phone to see how it reads in mobile. You should also use relevant keywords so your job shows up in target candidates’ searches.
You may want to try the F-Pattern, based on a study that found our eyes are trained to start at the top-left corner, scan horizontally, then drop down to the next line and do the same until we find something of interest. Displaying the job information in a way that is comfortable to the screen scanning style of a job seeker is another way to make them more likely to stay on your job posting.
By optimizing your job content on your careers site or ATS for mobile job seekers, you'll not only see more applicants come in overall, but you'll improve the efficiency of your job advertising efforts - therefore, improving conversion rates and decreasing CPAs.
Shorten the Application Process
So, now that you’ve optimized your job content to hold the attention of mobile job seekers, you should have more applicants flooding your inbox, right? Not exactly. While your short and sweet job content may be enough for job seekers to decide they want to apply for your job, they may quickly change their minds when they see a long form or many pages required, just to become a potential candidate. Job seekers don’t want to spend 30 minutes to fill out an application with numerous pages and forms. Keep in mind, humans today have a short attention span. Consider reducing your initial application process to a single-page form or asking less questions.
Highly sought after job seekers with in demand skills value their time, and this is time they would rather spend continuing their job search and applying to more jobs. The longer your application takes to complete, the more a candidate considers it to be a cost. Just like recruiters are searching for the right candidate, job seekers are searching for the right job.
The Undercover Recruiter found that when an applicant had to take more than 15 minutes to complete the full process, the submission rate drops off 365%. With a shorter process, job seekers are more likely to complete the job application. Remember, mobile device job seekers are just that. Mobile. They’re on the move and don’t want to be tied down to a long application process.
Create a Mobile-Friendly Experience
Smartphones aren’t the future. They’re the now, and they’re here to stay.
Improve your mobile recruiting by allowing candidates to apply to jobs and post resumes with their phones. According to Pew Research Center, 52% of candidates use their mobile phones to apply for jobs. Without accommodating the growing smartphone-dependent demographic, recruiters risk both the loss of quality candidates and an increase in time and financial investments.
Take a look at your job on a mobile device. Does it load on the job seeker’s phone correctly? Can the candidate easily fill in required fields, or does the page jump around when he or she tries to do so? In a research study focused on mobile site designs, participants were frustrated when they needed to zoom in or out, and sometimes missed important messaging and calls-to-action. When mobile usability is a challenge for candidates visiting your careers site and using your ATS, you give the appearance of having outdated technology, which should also be avoided when branding to potential candidates is a priority. By making the candidate experience more mobile-friendly, job seekers are more likely to convert into applicants.
Additionally, SHRM has found that 60 percent of mobile users expect websites to load in less than 3 seconds. Having a long page load time can discourage hopeful candidates who may leave your job to look for other opportunities. It can also lead to a poor branding experience for candidates who may be interacting with your website and brand for the first time.
So, how does this relate to your recruitment costs?
Job seeker frustrations can lead to applicant drop off while filling out job applications. Think about those drop offs. That’s like throwing away your valuable time and money that could have been spent to gain another candidate’s application, or more importantly, the right candidate’s application.
When you advertise jobs CPC pricing models, you pay when someone clicks on your job ad, even if they don’t complete the application. The higher your drop off rate is, the higher your CPA will be in turn, which means you could spend more of your budget while obtaining less potential candidate applications. Improving mobile candidate experience can lower your CPAs, making your job advertising more efficient and cost-effective.