On this blog, I’ve been talking a lot about candidate drop-off rates and how you can minimize them during your recruiting process. But I wanted to take a step back and examine who is actually dropping off during the recruiting process and why having a candidate drop off can actually be a good thing.
When you are looking at the candidates that are dropping off during the process, they can vary by skills, qualifications and motivation for looking at employment opportunities. While not fully exhaustive, these candidates can be placed into 4 main categories:
Unqualified: These candidates are unqualified for the given position (which they realize when they see the qualifications for the position on the job ad.) and are not likely to be qualified for your positions in the near future. These candidates you absolutely want to drop off during the apply process. The less unqualified candidates you have the less you will need to sort and filter through resumes in your ATS.
Not Ready to Apply: These candidates may be unqualified (but could be qualified in the near future) or need to do work before they can apply for the position. For these candidates, you want to make it easy for them to add themselves to your Talent Network (whether in the job ad itself, on your career site or directly in the apply process). Once they are in your Talent Network, you’ll be able to contact them and utilize them to fill future job opportunities.
Passive Candidates: These candidates have options. They are probably currently employed or have other opportunities available to them. Most likely they are shopping around for other employment opportunities and the less barriers you have in place the more likely they are to apply for your job positions.
Losing these candidates hurts the most and using a simple opt-in form can help you capture these candidates for future job positions. These are great candidates for you to make part of your Talent Network.
Qualified but can’t Apply: These candidates are qualified for the position, want to apply for some reason but can’t complete the apply process. This can be for any number of reasons including your job application having broken steps / links, them being confused on the next steps and/or the apply process just being too long.
You can see when this is a problem in your apply process when you look at your apply clicks and applicant recruiting metrics. When you are seeing a lot of apply clicks and very few applicants, you know that your job application is broken and needs to be fixed. There is no reason you should be losing these candidates.
The key to filtering out the right candidates in your recruitment marketing process is to optimize every step of your recruitment funnel and setting up the right filtering mechanisms to attract qualified candidates. This will be an iterative process that you will need to continually tweak and change as you look at the quality of candidates that will be coming into your ATS.
And most importantly, have a mechanism in place to enable you to collect contact information for passive candidates so you can communicate and engage with them during your recruiting process. Because these are the candidates that you are currently losing that will provide great value to your recruiting organization.