Within any organization there are a number of things that you take for granted as being true in your process and strategy.  Things that in thought may not appear to be a big deal but given a second look may have a considerable impact on your overall results.  And in many cases, this is not done with intent but happens because you expect your technology and process to accurately handle these areas.  The real problem is that some organizations don’t even realize they have a problem.

To help you identify potential problems in your strategy, here are some common myths that I’ve seen that are interesting to look at and address in your organization:

ATS Data is Accurate:  Depending on your ATS and your job distribution technology, this may be a big problem or not an issue of at all.  The key here is to not assume that the source data entering your ATS is accurate.  Many ATS provide the option to create unique source codes for the recruitment sources you use so that you can ensure accurate data entering your ATS.  Any good job distribution technology will make it easy to automatically insert the right source codes into every posting out to job boards, social networks and other niche sites.

The other key is to make sure that you aren’t using candidate self-selection to get your data.  This typically is wholly inaccurate as the candidate really does not really care if your source data is accurate and will select the source (probably referral) that they think gives them the best chance for an interview.  A shock I know.

Sources are to blame:  If you are like most organizations, you are using a variety of recruitment sources including job boards, niche site and social networks to spread awareness and attract applicants to newly open jobs.  For some jobs, if the number of applicants is disappointing, we point the blame to the sources we use.  But in many cases this may be wrong.

As I wrote in my blog post last week, there are a number of factors that affect the success of a job campaign and it’s not just the sources used.   Your messaging, apply process, Career Site and other factors all have an impact on low applicant and qualified candidate rates.

Your Career Site is your best source:  This is probably one of the biggest cases where your recruitment metrics are misleading.  While your Career Site is how a large number of candidates interact with your employment opportunities, it may be deceivingly high.  Let’s look at an example to explain this.

Say a candidate goes to a job board and clicks through to apply for the job.  They get to the job page on your Career Site but decide the job itself is not a good fit.  They use the search to find other potential jobs to apply for, click through some jobs and ultimately apply for another job.  For this example, a lot of processes the source for this candidate will be the Career Site even though the job board is the source that ultimately got the candidate to start the process.

The key is to understand how sources are passed into your Career Site and how the Career Site passes these sources into your ATS.

Past applicants are not qualified:  For every job position you fill, there are a good deal of candidates that are not selected to work at your company.  This does not mean however that they are not qualified and may not be fits for other or future positions.  But in a number of cases, these candidates are lost, dismissed and forgotten once the job they applied for is filled.  This however can be a mistake in the strategy and process.

The key here is having ways to engage with candidates that don’t become hires especially your Silver medalists.  This can include adding them to your Talent Network, inviting them to join a Talent Community or following your social channels.  In all these cases, we are concentrating on engaging with these folks and keeping them warm until an opportunity that fits their skill-set becomes available.  Content and messaging is key during this time and needs to be targeted and focused for the different audiences you are trying to attract.

Drop-off candidates don’t matter:  Within your apply process today, a large number of candidates are dropping off before they finish their application.  This number can be as high as 50-60% depending on the company and job position and this represents a big opportunity cost of not capturing information on these candidates.  Companies that put a simple Talent Network opt-in form in their apply process are able to capture nearly 80% of the candidates that typically drop-off.

Many times when presenting this information, one of the most common soud-bytes I’ve heard is “we don’t need more applicants, we already get too many.”  While this is something to think about, I think this is a flawed way to think about your process.  Not all candidates are created equal and we should be trying to capture information on all the candidates that interact with our careers.  If too many applicants is a problem, we can and should look at better ways to screen and segment the candidates that are coming into our ATS, whether that’s requesting more information from candidates or using our technology better to identify high potential candidates.

With your recruitment marketing strategy and process, it’s important to take a step back every now and then and evaluate the metrics to identify how to improve your process and results.  And I encourage you to keep these 5 myths in mind next time you take a look.

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