As a recruiter, your career site is one of the most important tools for branding and attracting candidates to your job postings. However, simply setting up a page with job listings means that you might be missing out on opportunities for moving candidates into your recruitment funnel. If your goal of bringing qualified candidates in through your career site is simply to fill positions, you’re neglecting an important function of your career site landing pages. Yes, you want to engage candidates, but what types of candidates are you targeting? Even if your SEO is 100% on point, it doesn’t tell the whole story or address your specific goals.
Reaching Diverse Candidate Communities
Recruiters and talent acquisition leaders are focused on diversity and inclusion more today than ever before. An online presence with your career site is more than a simple positive benefit for your employer brand (though it is important for that). It’s a tool for reaching diverse qualified candidates through paid promotion and programmatic advertising.
Consider the sheer effort it takes to organically promote your job listings to diverse candidate groups. Recruiters are told to “go where these candidates are” or “position your company as an inclusive workplace.” But once you and your marketing and IT departments have optimized your career site for accessibility standards, created different types of content (video, testimonials, etc.) to accompany your job ads, optimized your career site for search (specifically for diversity talent), made your site mobile friendly, and added “equal opportunity employer” to every page and job listing, can you just sit back and wait for the candidates you want to reach to find you? Short answer: No. The challenge: You need an ad budget and an efficient, high-ROI method to spend it. That’s where programmatic advertising comes in.
The Power of Programmatic Advertising
While familiar to digital marketers, programmatic advertising is still fairly new in the talent marketplace. In the simplest terms, programmatic advertising allows HR and talent acquisition professionals to make buying decisions in a split second, based on a pre-established set of rules and real-time performance data. Think CPC, PPC or SEM, but for job ads.
In the talent marketplace, programmatic advertising has one significant difference from standard CPC ad buys. While job ads can be created and scaled, unlike traditional digital advertising, job ads have an end date. Once a position is filled, it should and can be immediately pulled from an ad buy. The biggest benefit to this type of advertising is that you can set specific rules that are directly related to your ad budget, to reach a specific audience, for example, or to target a specific conversion rate.
Programmatic advertising can have exceptional results when it comes to focusing your efforts on diverse candidate groups such as women in leadership, people with disabilities, or veteran recruiting, by targeting and reaching those candidates where they spend time online and driving them to your diverse candidate specific career site landing page.
This is especially important if you have a specific diversity recruiting program or if you are Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) compliant and have an affirmative action program. Reporting data is at your fingertip, and you can increase or decrease your programmatic spend based on affirmative action and diversity goals. Additionally, the real-time, job-level performance data gives you the right information for reporting for compliance.
The diversity-specific career site landing page is important because it can help you understand your talent funnel and candidate conversion ratios. This helps you and your recruiting team better forecast the candidate traffic you need from various sources and positions that are part of your diversity recruiting efforts regardless of your compliance or company-specific goals.
An important added benefit when it comes to programmatic recruiting is the ability to control your ad spend offering the possibility of lowering your cost per hire. The real-time market bidding of programmatic allows recruiters to automatically direct traffic to jobs in need of applications. By distributing spend so that budget is concentrated only on the jobs that need more applications or a specific class of applicants, programmatic techniques can lower the cost of a quality applicant by as much as 30 percent.
Digital Storytelling and Your Employee Community
Once you’ve harnessed the power of programmatic ad buying, you can focus on optimizing your career site experience in relation to your employer brand. Digital storytelling is social. Rather than simply listing jobs on your careers page, consider mixing different types of content to engage a diverse audience. Choose your most active social channel and focus on highlighting your social presence content for sites like Instagram, for example, where you show off your brand or what it looks like to work for or with your company.
Enable your employees to drive social storytelling through hashtags and videos, or consider a daily employee “channel takeover” (AT&T does this well with its #LifeatATT hashtag). Create a short video featuring employees touting the benefits of your brand. Not only does it give visitors a reason to stick around, you’re giving them more memorable information and an inside look at your brand directly from the people who work for your company.
You can target a diverse candidate community via online advertising, but combine it with the power of storytelling on your career site landing pages, and you'll see the results in your hiring funnel not just when you have open positions, but by diverse candidate groups interested in working for your company in general.