It’s not what you know or who you know, any longer, that gives job candidates the best chance of landing a dream job. Since job seekers say the internet is their most important resource, staffing agencies that want to attract top talent need to master the digital channels candidates are using today.
Internet, Not “Who You Know,” Best Resources for Job Seekers
Several years ago a Jobvite.com infographic featured by The Undercover Recruiter claimed that employee referrals dominated when it came to the channels job seekers found most effective in landing a new job. While career websites made the list of top five, twice as many attributed hires to referrals than career sites, and nearly three times as many said that having someone on the inside was more effective than job boards.
Staffing Agencies – Master Digital Hiring Strategies to Attract Top Talent Online
More recent data published by The Boston Consulting Group and Recruit Works Institute on staffingindustry.com says those numbers have flip-flopped, as more candidates not only use the internet to find new jobs, but rank it as the most effective job search channel as well. When asked which channels they used to find a new job, candidates listed the following:
- 55% – Internet job sites
- 36% – Paper media
- 33% – Referrals from people they know
- 24% – Direct inquiry
- 20% – Public services
- 17% – Permanent placement employment agencies
- 17% – Temporary placement employment agencies
- 9% – Alumni networks
- 7% – Job training programs
It’s no secret that people who are serious about finding a new job or just casually looking around to see what type of opportunities are available use the internet to discover position listings. While having someone on the inside who is willing to recommend you to a hiring manager is certainly a plus, data shows that a majority of candidates are uncovering and landing new jobs on their own. In the U.S., candidates said that the most effective channels in helping them obtain a new job as:
- 35% – Internet job sites
- 20% – Direct inquiry
- 19% – Referrals from people they know
- 9% – Paper media
- 4% – Temporary placement employment agencies
- 3% – Permanent placement employment agencies
- 3% – Public services
- 1% – Job training programs
- 4% – Alumni networks
When it comes to getting a job, it turns out that it’s not who you know, it’s what a talented candidate knows how to find online that matters most. Staffing agencies can improve their ability to land the talented candidates they need to compete and grow by reaching the passive talent pool as well as those actively seeking new opportunities and by mastering use of the same digital channels job seekers are using to uncover job openings online.
Looking for Top Talent in All the Wrong Places?
While fewer than 20 percent of those in the job market (either currently employed or looking for a job) are engaged in a proactive job search, the real size of the talent pool is much, much larger. Jobvite’s 2018 Job Seeker Nation Study indicated that as many as 82 percent of employed workers were open to new job opportunities.
Presumably, the internet will continue to be main a go-to resource for candidates, and especially for candidates who are just exploring the job market in a more passive way, and who might not want colleagues to know that they are considering other opportunities. Not only will they use the internet to uncover open positions, they will also use the internet to research companies where they want to work or who have listed job openings that interest them.
Recruiters, staffing agencies and temporary placement firms that get top talent on-board – whether they are actively looking for a new job or just testing the waters – have an advantage when it comes to persuading hiring managers to take a look at their candidates instead of conducting their own recruiting and hiring process. Here are four digital channels your staffing agency should master in order to engage active and passive candidates, earlier in the job search process.
4 Ways Staffing Agencies Can Attract Top Talent Online
1. Optimize Your Agency’s Position Listings for Online Search
Staffing agencies should optimize their own position listings just as if they were web pages designed to get found in local search. Instead of thinking about the listing in terms of the position’s responsibilities or candidate skills and abilities desired, content should be written to make it more likely for the listing to be discovered by potential candidates in an online search.
- Include keywords and phrases that job candidates would be likely to type into a search browser
- Use keywords in meta titles and descriptions
- Use headlines with keywords to help get found in search and draw the site visitor in when they land on the listing
2. Write Like Marketers, not Hiring Managers
Be interesting! Candidates might read hundreds of position descriptions in the course of a job search. Write your online content so that it is engaging and memorable – or even entertaining. Send the message that the company you are representing is a great place to work and build a career. Talk about the organizational values that would make candidates a good fit for the employer. Create intrigue and interest.
3. Think Long Term Instead of One-and-Done
Build for the long term and get the opt-in. Make sure there’s a way for site visitors to subscribe to updates about a position, even if they are not ready to submit an application. Keep it short and simple so that you can build your contact database and engage with local talent via email so that when they are ready, they turn to your staffing agency for help.
4. Use Social Media to Expand Reach
Social networks like LinkedIn are not just great channels where staffing agencies can publicize openings, they can also be used to network with both active and passive candidates. Building reach on social networks comes down to increasing numbers of social followers for recruiting and staffing agencies as well as individual recruiting professionals themselves. In addition to posting engaging content, staffing and temp employers can also sponsor posts and social media ads to increase their ability to attract talented workers.