Why Talent Acquisition Needs To Get More Chatty
“More than 80% of today’s shoppers conduct online research before making a purchase. Just like a sophisticated consumer, candidates are researching your company to help them decide whether they will apply or accept a job with your organization.” ~ Proactive Talent Strategies
The “you have to reach people where they are” mantra has been around for decades. But what exactly does that mean for candidate attraction efforts in today’s war for talent?
We recently spoke to Ed Barrientos, CEO of Brazen, an #HRtech software company, for the Talent is Transforming podcast. We wanted to identify how companies engage with prospective talent by leveraging technology and today’s preferred communication style -- texting. Brazen found a way to engage with the next-generation workforce that could completely change talent acquisition.
“Employers are 2X more likely to capture candidate interest via online chat over online applications.” ~ Brazen
Brazen, founded by two Millennials and a Gen Xer, built a platform that uses text-based chat to engage with prospective and current employees. “Think about how Millennials communicate,” Ed shared. “They text, they chat, they’re online all the time and it’s all text based. Why fight that trend, why not embrace it and find a way to connect employers with candidates with some form of chat.”
So why does text-based engagement work? Ed says companies need to get back to the basics of engagement, which means human interaction. Engagement used to happen over the phone but that model isn’t scalable anymore. Text-based chat solutions allow companies to engage with several candidates at the same time. And they’re not necessarily chatting with a recruiter but with current employees in roles that the candidate is interested in. So an engineering candidate will text chat with a member of the engineering team about their projects and experience working at the company.
Ed says this is particularly powerful with “passive” candidates, who are already in jobs and not actively looking to make a change.
“Nearly 90 percent of a company’s pool of candidates are passive. Being able to attract and engage those individuals is a lot tougher than just sending them an email and asking them to call you,” he says.
Another notable shift in talent acquisition has been from “everybody wants to work for us and we’re here to filter out the bad and pick the good” to using more of a marketing approach to engaging with candidates. Ed says a great example of this is GE’s “Owen” commercials, which creatively attempt to change the stereotype of GE as just an industrial company. “This is using a marketing approach and technique to communicate and engage with candidates at scale,” says Ed.
The marketing “call to action” is also changing talent acquisition. Calls to action are used in marketing to get people to take the next step, like buying their product or clicking a link to get more information.
In recruiting, the call to action has always been the singular “apply now.” The majority of candidates avoid it because of the long process of applying and then potentially being rejected. The new call to action for recruiters should be “come chat with us.” Companies are scheduling chat events with internal teams who can tell candidates about the projects they’re working on.
“If you’re paying to reach individuals, why not take advantage of a higher percentage of people engaging with you. It may not be immediate hires, but now you have them in the pipeline.” Ed Barrientos, Brazen
Want to hear more about how talent acquisition is changing? Listen to the rest of the Talent is Transforming podcast. (insert hype