< Back to Hiring Blog

Businesses See Career Sites as Key to Better Candidate Experience

May 16, 2019
iCIMS Staff
6 min read

When businesses need to drum up sales, they advertise.


From far-reaching billboards to targeted email blasts and everything in between, businesses use ads to entice people to visit their websites, and brick-and-mortar locations.


With recruitment-marketing trends never far behind those of consumer marketing, many businesses similarly use countless creative ways to usher job seekers to their career sites, but their thinking often stops after the journey and short of the equally critical destination.


While consumers arrive at easily searchable websites that highlight the hottest products and sales, businesses lead candidates to clunky career sites that lack the same features and functionality, a costly mistake that they need to fix unless they want to watch today’s dwindling supply of talent search for a better experience elsewhere, perhaps at competitors.


“Any corporation has to think about the different ways that it touches consumers or just the ways that it touches people,” said Josh Wright, chief economist at iCIMS, a leading provider of recruitment software. “Career sites are not just about making the right brand impression, but also about herding candidates into position, each step pushing them onward through the funnel. These sites have the potential to draw candidates in, just like storefronts do with shoppers.”


Yet, while 41 percent of businesses acknowledge that their career sites offer a poor experience, more than half of them do not prioritize improving it, according to Hays, a recruiting firm. On the flip side, that means that businesses that pursue the following four steps and treat their career sites as priorities can gain an invaluable edge in the fight to hire the talent that they need to grow, but they must act quickly before the window of opportunity closes.


Improve search functionality


Nearly 70 percent of job seekers already use Google to look for open jobs and research employers, according to iCIMS. That figure will likely increase now that Google indexes job openings shared on the internet and more businesses optimize their job descriptions for the search engine so that their roles appear higher in the rankings of relevant searches.


The upside? Google will provide job seekers with a pleasant search experience that will lead them directly to business’ career sites, eliminating the need for job boards as costly middlemen. The downside? In stark contrast, many business’ career sites offer a poor search experience, which could prevent job seekers from finding what they need once on the site.



Optimize for mobile devices


Sixty-six percent of working Americans, including 82% of millennials, expect businesses to offer mobile-friendly career sites and application processes, according to iCIMS. Imagine spending a fortune on recruitment marketing tactics that lure job seekers all the way to suitable job openings only to see them abandon applications due to difficulty completing forms or attaching requested documents, such as a resume. What a waste of money.


To prevent that from happening, businesses need to optimize their career sites for mobile devices to make it easy for job seekers to apply from any device, which will mitigate the risk of candidates abandoning incomplete applications.


Esurance, the San Francisco-based direct-to-consumer insurance provider, improved its candidate-experience Net Promoter Score by 36 points in part due to it providing job seekers with the ability to use their mobile devices at any stage.


“We want to have a tech-savvy hiring process to make our candidate experience painless,” the company’s Head of Talent Acquisition Kristi Robinson said.


Take control of content


Many businesses pay third parties to manage their career sites, making for another expense and risking an inconsistent brand as job seekers move from one web property to another.


If businesses assume ownership of their career sites, then they can eliminate the cost of paying somebody else to manage it, ensure consistency with other branded properties and promote high-priority job postings.


“Our career site is the face of the company,” said Steve DeCusta, former recruiting manager at Samsonite, the Hong Kong-based luggage company. “It’s one of the first items candidates interact with and we really needed to set the stage here for why you would want to work with Samsonite.”


Measure and refine


Finally, businesses need to tie their spending on recruitment marketing to proven results by measuring candidate-conversion rates, the same way that they determine marketing’s success through leads, opportunities and sales.


Find out how to implement those steps in one fell swoop with iCIMS Attract, a recruitment-marketing solution that helps employers drive top talent into talent pools and measurable hiring funnels.


Join our growing community

and receive free tips on how to attract, engage, hire, & advance the best talent.

privacy notice

Explore categories

Explore categories

Back to top

Learn how iCIMS can help you attract, engage, hire, and advance the best talent

Read more about Career sites

The most revealing career site analytics

Read more

Capture more candidates with a career site built for consumers

Read more

What we learned at Unleash, the world’s most influential HR tech conference

Read more