Warning, this is not going to work!

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Apr 27, 2016
This article is part of a series called Editor's Pick.

Candidate Engagement is the new Achilles heel in Sourcing and Recruiting. It used to be finding a candidate was the key to filling jobs. However, now times are different due to technology tools and social networking sites Recruiters and Sourcers can find candidates relatively easy.  The new challenge today is Candidate Engagement. How do you convince Candidate X to become an Applicant?

“Hi, I am Kevin Walters, I am a Recruiter working for XYZ, company Blah. Blah…. We make the most exciting blah, blah, blah in the market, I found your resume and it looks like you could be a good fit for blah, blah, blah… Knock, knock is anyone home? Hello, can you hear me?  Hello from the outside? Adele.

Why am I not getting a response to these InMails?

Sounds familiar? So many Recruiters miss the mark on Engagement, that I wish I could invent an automatic pop up that would appear during the InMail that states ”WARNING,  THIS IS NOT GOING TO WORK!”

Ok, so how do we engage candidates in hopes of turning them into applicants?

Below is a couple of ways to engage your target audience or candidates:

Connect by showing them the “Employee Value Proposition”, EVP.

  • Candidate Engagement is about the connection. Finding a way to show potential applicants why they are a fit. The scientific question is when you should present your strategy engagement Answer: right away. As Recruiters aka Company Ambassadors, we should share our EVP with candidates when we first engage them. If the goal is to turn these candidates into applicants, then show them what you.

Use corporate engagement tools like culture videos, career pages, corporate events, holiday parties, CEO broadcast or anything that shows them “Why” someone should apply. Telling a potential applicant about the company product and responsibilities of the role is the “What.” Both are necessary and should be executed in the right order. Make sure the candidate is the right fit before turning them into an applicant.

Find common ground, “Personalize.”

  • Avoid mass emailing 4000 people. Do research on your potential applicants. Send personalized InMails based on their interests. How do you know their interests? Research your candidates on Facebook and, LinkedIn. Look for similarities between their interests and your corporate culture. Find a common thread between what they are looking, how they live and what your company represents.

Use the art of storytelling to get your point across.

  • Pretend you are reading a story when presenting your EVP to the candidate. Relate the story to your candidate as if you were reading to a child. Children love when you read to them with expression and excitement. For them it is all about the content and experience, not how fast you can read. They listen to every detail and follow all expressions in your voice. You should use the same concept when describing your EVP; tell it with passion and excitement.

Give your candidates a reason to engage and talk to you. Tease them with just enough information so they want to speak to you.

Engage directly when possible.

  • One of the downsides of using online social media is the lack thereof of direct engagement. People today have become so fixated on the quick fixes like email, instant messaging and social that they have forgotten how to pick up the phone and talk.  I recently spent some time recruiting overseas in Sydney, Australia and found it to refreshing.  Candidates in Australia understand the importance of direct engagement.  When I spoke to candidates there, they would ask me if they could stop by the office and meet for coffee. Before this, I had even forgotten how important a face to face meeting could be. It allows you to see if the candidate is a fit.  Right off the bat, I was able to eliminate potential candidates based on those initial meetings.

So why are you not meeting more candidates?  Some Recruiters say well I am too busy recruiting to meet candidates, and they would rather wait until a meeting occurs with the hiring manager.  WRONG ANSWER.

As the Recruiter, you own the initial candidate experience. Start off on the right foot by engaging directly, selling the EVP, showing the culture and presenting the role to your potential applicant. The key to a successful Candidate Engagement is customizing the experience and making it about the candidate.

One of the greatest feelings you will receive is when your new hire tells you that YOU were the main reason he joined the company.   Every heard the saying “People Buy People.” Well, it is true, how you engage your candidate will make the result more achievable!

This article is part of a series called Editor's Pick.