COVID-19 has drastically changed the talent acquisition landscape. Unemployment has grown to unprecedented levels, with more than 30 million workers having filed unemployment claims in the U.S. alone since mid-March.

This has interesting implications for the war for sourcing talent. For example, while recruiters are now receiving a significantly higher number of job applications than they used to, finding relevant, high-quality candidates has become even more difficult. This is because there is a much larger applicant pool to select the right candidates from.

While talent acquisition (TA) leaders continue to be tasked with finding high-quality candidates quickly, their budgets have now shrunk. They are now expected to do more, with less.

In other words, they need to work harder and smarter than ever before, to achieve the same or better results at a lower cost. Modern candidate sourcing technologies can be a huge enabler for this.

Here’s a list of five of the coolest candidate sourcing tools that modern TA leaders should arm their teams with:

1. Job description optimization

What is the first thing you do when you need to post a job opportunity?

If it’s a new requirement, you might be tempted to quickly look up similar postings by industry peers or competitors and replicate one that you like. If it’s a recurring requirement, you might recycle an old ad, with a few tweaks, in case you’re thinking of something more specific or different compared to the last time. And there is really no harm in doing this.

However, recruiters are often guilty of not making sure that the job descriptions are free of any bias – gender-related, racial, cultural, religious, or otherwise. This can alienate many high-quality candidates.

A research study from ZipRecruiter showed that gender-neutral job listings receive up to 42% more responses compared to their biased counterparts. Therefore, recruiters must make a conscious effort to ensure their job descriptions are inclusive and unbiased.

Similarly, job ads must be optimized for SEO, for better reach and visibility.

To summarize, when your job ads are optimized and inclusive, you attract a larger, more diverse pool of high-quality talent for your open jobs.

Fortunately, this is not that hard to do, if you have the right candidate sourcing tools. TalVista,  Get-Optimal, and Textio are some examples.

2. Candidate data platform

Businesses that hire in large volumes typically gather data on thousands or even hundreds of thousands of candidates over the years. This data is stored in their Application Tracking Systems (ATS) and Candidate Relationship Management (CRM) platforms. These businesses often don’t know what to do with this data or how it could help them in their future recruitment efforts. Therefore, their candidate databases are colloquially and appropriately termed “black holes.” Such data can prove to be the most valuable unmined asset for a TA leader.

A candidate data platform (CDP) can aggregate and organize data across different touchpoints and channels – directly from the ATS or CRM, job boards, career sites, mobile apps, email marketing, and others – and use it to identify, target, and activate the perfect candidates for your job requirements. A CDP platform can –

  • create ideal candidate personas and lookalike audiences,
  • score candidates on the basis of relevance to a job,
  • identify the best candidates for an open job,
  • help personalize content and outreach,
  • drive better candidate experience, and much more.

The possibilities for sourcing talent are endless

3. Programmatic job advertising

Programmatic job advertising is the application of a machine-driven, rules-based approach to buying job ads. Your recruitment media spend is allocated to top-performing job boards or online sources – the ones that attract the most relevant (high-quality) candidates and produce the best results (applies or hires), while reducing cost per applicant (CPA) and cost per hire (CPH).

Programmatic job advertising uses machine learning to apply insights and learnings automatically, for jobs and campaigns, to determine the right publishers, bids (costs), and timing. Continuous improvement based on data is a key feature of this approach.

Programmatic job advertising also eliminates the need for you to buy media separately from multiple job boards and manage several contracts.

In addition, it opens the doors to using highly effective and targeted job sites for candidate sourcing, which recruiters often may not even know, exist.

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4. Click-to-Apply Conversion Optimization

So you’ve optimized your job descriptions, made the most of your candidate data, and targeted the most relevant job seekers on the right job boards / channels… now what? You still need them to apply for the job and stay engaged through the rest of the application process. That’s where one of many candidate sourcing tools comes in; candidate experience.

However, this is woefully lacking in a majority of job application processes today. According to Glassdoor, the typical candidate drop off rate in an application process is 80%!

Conversion optimization technology helps you improve your click-to-apply (conversion) rates significantly by delivering a great candidate experience. This includes –

  • simplifying job applications,
  • structuring the information-gathering process better,
  • eliminating signups and logins, if possible,
  • limiting mandatory (as well as optional) questions to ask what’s truly required,
  • optimizing applications for all device types and sizes (desktops, tablets, and mobile), and
  • preventing external navigation (away from the original site).

Conversion optimization technology can also re-engage relevant job seekers that did not complete an application – with email, social, and selective advertising. Furthermore, you can use it to enable applications to multiple jobs, to increase the probability of the candidate applying to the best-fit job.

With conversion optimization in place, you can get a significantly higher ROI from your existing candidate sources and lower cost-per-hire.

5. Chatbots

Modern, AI-powered chatbots tailored for recruitment offer another great way to improve conversion rates. These chatbots can greatly enhance candidate experience by “conversing” with job seekers to gather information, screen them, instantly address frequently asked questions, schedule interviews, and more, while keeping them engaged throughout the application process.

In addition to improving conversion rates, using conversational bots makes life easier for both TA leaders and recruiters, and enables them to focus on higher-value functions, such as interviewing candidates.

Technology has caught up. Have you?

As TA leaders and recruitment professionals are racing to transform what has traditionally been a high-touch, personal interaction-intensive process into a digital one, they are also simultaneously looking for ways to save costs and time.

Ensuring you have the right technology stack to source candidates and provide them with a delightful experience throughout the hiring process, is critical to achieving these objectives. Have any questions on the best candidate sourcing tools and talent sourcing technologies for your organization? Schedule some time to chat with one of our recruitment marketing experts.