A Recruiters Take on Texting Job Candidates by @GregHawkesMDACC

Back when I was in engineering recruitment, I learned about a free resource called Textnow.com. It’s a cool website that allows you to text candidates from a general number right from your desktop. Using this as a last resort after calls, emails, and Linkedin messages, I found this a great way to “reel” in responses. I remember one instance where I reached out to around 12 Senior Engineers via text and got 7 responses in a 15 minute span. We were able to schedule several imperative interviews for our client due to the quick responses.

I wouldn’t recommend starting with texting but it can be a great final outreach, especially for hard to catch engineers or technicians who may work in a plant or in the field. I’ve also found that it’s also an excellent resource for hospital staff that may have their phones turned off or can’t take calls.

Recently, I was talking to some of my teammates about methods for contacting candidates. I noticed that our interview scheduler and onboarding agent were having significant challenges reeling in responses from interviewees (and prospective hires regarding pre-employment appointments). I pitched the idea of using TextNow as a last resort, and the outcomes for both groups were just as impressive! Both Scheduling AND Onboarding experienced similar success through using TextNow as a third layer of contact (especially when calls and emails had gone unanswered). In Turn, this has helped us keep more interviews and retain interested candidates that may otherwise have been lost through lack of response. We all get busy with our day to day, but this has allowed our audience an easy and quick way to respond when they can’t get away from their station to make a call or send an email.

Heck, I even know one recruiter on the agency side that used text.now to reel in one of her hiring managers that went “ghost” on her. This always makes me chuckle as I had never thought to use it to contact a hiring manager. She got immediate feedback on her candidates and was able to take the next steps.

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Textnow.com is a FREE texting technology, the only downside is that your number “resets” if you don’t use it once every three days. Still it’s FREE, and it’s great if you don’t want to use your own personal cell number or gmail account to reach out to candidates (or hiring managers).

What are you using to text candidates?

Greg Hawkes is a Strategic Talent Sourcer, Speaker, Author, and Founder of the HRSourcingToolbox. He has worked as both a Technical Recruiter and Sourcing Analyst for healthcare, engineering, biotechnology, manufacturing and many other industries. He has been in the recruitment field for over 10 years, and got into heavy sourcing and headhunting back in 2012. He is an ongoing contributor to SourceCon – with topics ranging from Site Searches and CSEs, to Deep Dives andURL Sourcing. While preparing to speak at SourceCon 2017, he built the HRSourcingToolbox with a large inventory of Free Recruitment and Sourcing Tools. He has recently joined Houghton Mifflin Harcourt as a Strategic Sourcer and loving every minute of it! He is a huge fan of emerging technologies and Boolean Syntax and always willing to share a technique or hack to find the elusive purple squirrel.

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