Recruiters want the best way to reach the most candidates, so why do so many neglect the most obvious and widespread means of communication available? In just the first decade of this new century, the number of mobile users exploded into the billions, taking us to where we are now. It's still taking shape, but it's still under-utilized in recruiting.
Over 90 percent of Americans use a mobile device, and most people are never more than an arm's length away from it. It's the last thing looked at before bed, and the first thing checked in the morning. In short, people love mobile and want to keep it near.
If you want to reach as many candidates, both active and passive, it only makes sense to meet them where they live. The same device that's never left behind is also a direct line to candidates. Question is, are you taking advantage of that link?
Where Mobile Has Been
From about 2007, the buzz has been all about mobile. But not many knew what to do with it back then. Blackberries made email accessible on the go, and texting became a real thing soon after. Recruiters and candidates could communicate without the need for a desktop, or at least without ONLY needing one.
But that did almost nothing for recruiting. Evolution of the Web places the first mobile Internet capability in the late 90s, believe it or not. And once mobile internet was widely available and smartphones were in practically every pocket, backpack and purse, it was still more of a novelty. On the back side, technology kept growing.
Mobile browsing has allowed job seekers to peruse jobs online, but it's been more than a little cumbersome. Unless a site is optimized for mobile, the experience is so uncomfortable that it's barely worth the effort. That explains why at least half of job seekers abandon the application process before it's done. But it doesn't explain why optimization improvement has been so slow.
Where We are Now
Currently, the technology exists to make every recruiting site clean, easy-to-use, and friendly for mobile users from start to finish. That's a great step in the right direction, but it's still overlooked to a large degree, according to Recruiting Daily. Most recruiters - an overwhelming majority - don't offer an optimized experience for users. Perhaps the thinking is that as long as something exists for mobile, it's good enough. Unfortunately, it's not because mobile is rapidly overtaking the desktop mindset.
There's so much available right now, and job seekers and passive candidates respond to it where it exists. A clunky site that doesn't look or function on mobile the way that it does on a desktop is an instant turnoff. But users don't typically swap to a desktop just to access the site another way. More often, the process is abandoned altogether. For recruiters, that's another candidate missed. And that doesn't touch on the other possibilities, such as push notifications and really reaching passive candidates.
Mobile optimization has the ability to completely overhaul everything that you do. It starts with a mobile-first mindset. Discard the notion that desktops are where it's at. Nearly 50 percent of job seekers use mobile, and 65 percent of them will opt out if the search and application experience makes the process more challenging than it should be. And the numbers grow every day.
Where We Could Be
It won't be long before desktops are something that have to be used in certain situations. Sometimes a giant display and a comfy desk chair are preferable, at least for certain jobs. But mobile means people stay connected at work (think about passive candidates), at play, while shopping, and right before bed. Desktops can't touch it, especially for the 18 - 36 age group who check a mobile device about 43 times every day.
What's necessary is a pivot, not an about-face. Reaching candidates and applying for jobs online isn't changing, at least not anytime soon. What IS changing is the way people want to access it. And you can offer an incredible experience for your candidates, outpacing the herd by a mile. You've known about recruiters who seem to be at the right place at the right time. This is your opportunity to be exactly that.
Using job/employer matching technology, you can target the passive candidates who are so important right now; the ones who already have a job but still check their smartphones at lunch or right before bed. And with a mobile-optimized recruiting experience for candidates, the whole process can be seamless. How better to lure candidates to your team than to reach them where they live and make the switch so much easier than anybody else?
Digital and recruiting technologies are in an incredible place. There's never before been anything with so much potential. Users want an immediate and intuitive experience, and the recruiting technology exists to give it to them.
While thinking about the next batch of employees that you need to hire, also think about what it's like from their side of the display. Does your company reach potential hires in the place where they spend the most time? And once there, do they have the ability to apply for a job using nothing besides a mobile device? If not, there's some catching up to be done. Fortunately, mobile-first technology is all there for the asking.