Being on the technology side, I know how hard it is to talk to differentiate from one solution to the next when it comes to recruitment marketing technology.  When purchasing a Recruiting CRM, it’s that much harder as you not only have vendors with Traditional Sales Based CRM’s but also companies that focus solely on CRM’s for recruiting.

When deciding between solutions, take a moment to evaluate your current situation.  Ask your team why you need a CRM and what problems you hope to solve with it!  Then create a wish list of what you would like your CRM solution to provide from specific features to broad concepts.

Once you have an idea for what you want, start searching for companies that can provide it.  Search online for CRM vendors and (probably the best strategy) talk to connections that are using these solutions.  Get a feeling for what comes standard in these solutions and what features seem to stand them apart.

Choose 3-4 vendors that you like and reach out to them.  Get a full demo of their solution and ask a ton of questions (which may or may not be in the form of a RFI or RFP).  The more questions they answer, the better.

Create your own list of things to look for in each vendor’s demo & presentation.  For a few things to start you off, here are a some things think about when looking to purchase a Recruiting CRM:

Easy Web Sourcing - Make sure the your solution offers easy to use features that enable you to add contacts to your CRM from the web.  Whether it’s through a browser interface, email, mobile or an Excel Spreadsheet, there needs to be a way for your recruiters and sourcers to easily add qualified contacts to your CRM.

Collect Candidates During Application Process - Make sure that the CRM you choose offers that option for candidates to add themselves to your CRM during your application process.  This is important as we’ve seen as high as 50% of candidates who enter an online application drop off before clicking “Submit” and becoming an applicant in an ATS.

It’s a wasted opportunity to not interact with these candidates and providing opt-in opportunities in your recruiting process can help add these candidates to your Talent Network.

Send Targeted Email / SMS - The biggest thing for a CRM is the ability to take action on the contacts that you have in your system.  Whether it’s targeted Email or SMS campaigns, you need a way to sort through and send targeted messaging to the right contacts at the right time.  Make sure a CRM solution enables you to sort and segment your contacts into relevant groups so that you can easily send targeted messaging to contacts for specific job openings and job categories.

Social Networks - Social Media is becoming a major trend in recruiting.  Make sure a CRM has the ability to search and save social media profiles (LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, etc.) for contacts and have relevant ways to educate contacts on your company’s own social networks.  You also want simple tools to help your recruiters quickly and easily join in on the conversation with qualified candidates on this tools.

Mobile Recruiting - Mobile Recruiting is another one of those hot topics.  From a CRM perspective, make sure the CRM enables you to use a mobile device to source candidates into your CRM database and enables you to send these contacts mobile SMS messages.  In addition, see if they have a mobile app that let’s you easily access the CRM database on the go.

Customization - Make sure that the vendor provides customization to fit your current systems and processes.  Ask about features you would like added as you are going through demo and see if they are flexible.

Measure Everything – When you send out Email & SMS campaigns, how successful are they?  How many new contacts has each individual recruiter / sourcer added to the CRM each month?  Think of recruiting metrics you would like to know and ask the technology provider if you would be able to track it.

Next-Gen Features - Ask the provider what new features they looking to add to the CRM in the next quarter and/or next year.  This question will help you understand how responsive they are to new technologies and trends in the industry and how committed they are to building a better product.

When looking to purchase a CRM, take a 30 minute meeting with your team and ask your recruiters what they would want in a CRM solution.  Once you have that list of desires, you will have enough ammo to go out and ask the tough questions to vendo


Originally posted on the SmashFly Recruitment Marketing Blog.

About the Author: Chris is the Marketing Analyst for SmashFly Technologies, the creators of the first Recruitment Marketing Platform which enables companies to easily distribute and most importantly measure the performance of their job ads. The platform also provides Recruitment CRM, Mobile Recruiting, Resume Sourcing, Web Commercials and Social Recruiting functions

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