New trends in digital recruiting crop up all the time. It seems like every day there's something else you just have to capitalise on. There's emerging social channels like Peach, video streaming services like Periscope and Meerkat, alongside opportunites to recruit on unusual platforms like Tinder...it seems like there's a never ending list of ways to source and engage with candidates online.
For many recruiters, this can be daunting. After all, how can you get on with your job when there's so much industry disruption? This is a question recruiters struggle to answer, so here are some thoughts on how you can turn new recruitment trends into lasting habits.
The first place to start is with some good old fashioned market research. You need to know what your candidates and clients are doing and what social networks and digital channels they’re using in order to target the right trends.
So, take all of the advice from industry influencers with a pinch of salt. They’re selling the idea of innovation, and for the most part, their thoughts and strategies are generalised and might not be applicable to your niche.
For example, if you recruit for creative and digital media roles you might do well placing job ads on a site like Pinterest due to its visual based format. But, if you’re working on more exclusive high end, hard to fill roles you’re less likely to turn to social media. Don't blindly follow new trends simply because everyone else is. Instead, take a step back and consider how they'll impact you, your candidates, and your clients too.
The point is, when it comes to your business, you’re the expert. You’ll know what emerging trends are relevant to your sector. Talk with your typical candidates and develop an understanding of what they’re collectively experiencing during a job search. This will help you identify avenues ripe for innovative recruitment practices that suit your business.
If you’re sitting in front of your computer every day, reading industry articles and thinking about the future of the recruitment industry, you’ll only become ever more reactive. Instead, get out of the office, talk with other recruiters and find out what they’re experiencing. Similar to talking to candidates, you’ll begin to see areas to explore further.
Plus, by talking with other people, you can build a name for yourself as an expert and forward thinking recruiter in your niche. If you’re the first person talking about a potential trend, people will take note, further adding to your reputation.
This could be a good opportunity to create content, such as blogs and videos, where you discuss trends you’ve identified. Ask for comments and engagement from your audience and create a relevant conversation around ideas that you think will take hold over the coming months.
As with every new business practice, don’t invest too heavily at first. Instead set a small goal and work towards it. This will give you some data to work with, allowing you to monitor the effectiveness of a new trend for your business early on.
If you consider job descriptions as an example. Candidates are frequently turned off by poorly written, dull advertisements so here’s a good place to experiment. Write more actionable, relevant, and exciting job descriptions in order to captivate candidates and encourage them to apply. Perhaps you could incorporate video into your job ads, too. This would let candidates glimpse things like company culture that's harder to communicate via text based content.
From there you can monitor how effective these new job ads are when compared to the way you used to write them. Do you get more candidates applying? Less? Are the applicants of a better quality? Do they see out the whole process? What’s the bounce rate on the page itself?
Consider, too, where you're placing these job adverts. Perhaps sharing via different social networks could lead to a better return in terms of applicants. All of these metrics can help you to judge how effective this new approach to crafting job ads is. This is just an example of how you can test a new trend and determine whether or not it adds value to your business.
The next step is to monitor the effectiveness of any new trends you adopt. Of course you want them to have an excellent ROI, although this might take some time to see. So, when setting your goals, make sure you’re working within a managed timeframe, one that allows you enough time for some trial and error around any new practice you’re working with.
One of the most important things, however, is to stick with whatever trend you select for long enough to judge it fairly and accurately.
With all of that said, there are times when you need to rethink a new business practice. For whatever reason, sometimes it doesn’t work out so you have to be honest.
After investing time, money, and plenty of effort, you have to be willing to step back and assess the effectiveness of your new practices. If it’s not working, stop, move on, and find something else. That’s the thing about new trends – they’re fickle. So even once you’ve committed, know it might not work out.
Good luck and remember to keep your ear to the ground. Knowing what industry developments are on the horizon will allow you to adapt and adjust and keep your business future proof.
About the Author: Working as their Content Guru, Andy Mckendry plans, writes, and edits articles and blog posts for Firefish Software. He holds an MA in Professional Writing, and in the early mornings is known to gravitate towards the nearest coffee pot.
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