5 Essential Tips to Find Your Candidate Match Before Your Competitors Do!

Here’s a startling fact: 77% of hiring managers surveyed say recruiters’ candidate screening is inadequate.1

Of course, finding the right candidate in today’s competitive hiring climate is a tall order. Not only are some industries experiencing talent shortages, but recruiting best practices are rapidly changing. Candidates now have the latitude to search for jobs like consumers, and companies are altering their understandings of organizational dynamics (such as what kinds of employee traits make for good business).

Adapting to these rapid and continuously evolving changes can be tough. However, the following five tips can help start you on the path to finding best-fit candidates, faster.

Tip#1: Look for Candidates that Embody Company Values

We know that hiring candidates with the right skills is important. However, finding candidates with the right values is important, too. A candidate that aligns with your company’s mission statement—in other words, a candidate that represents what you believe in—is more likely to be a productive, collaborative, and engaged employee, because they’ll understand the purpose behind the work.

The good news is that today’s candidates already place greater value on working for a company with a culture they can stand behind. Approximately 3 in 4 job seekers say culture is important to their job search.2

What to Do:

Don’t make skills qualifications the only criteria for selection. Instead, also ask candidates: “What makes you a great cultural fit for our company?”. A candidate’s response to this question will tell you how much they actually know about your company culture, as well as how apt they are to fit it.

Asking candidates to answer this question in a video cover letter gives them the opportunity to craft a thoughtful response and let their personalities shine through, without the pressures of an onsite interview.

Tip #2: Make Current Employees Brand Ambassadors

Showcase your company’s culture by encouraging employees to act as brand ambassadors: people willing to connect with job seekers, talk about your mission statement, and in general, advocate for the company.

This type of brand ambassadorship not only helps attract best-fit candidates (who get a better sense of who makes up your company and what they stand for), but helps generate employee referrals, which are shown to increase the chances of a strong job match. Forty-three percent of employers surveyed say their best hires come from employee referrals.3

What to Do:

  • Let employees know that you value their role in attracting new hires, and provide any training and resources necessary
  • Encourage participation in your employee referral program with incentives
  • Feature employees on social media and other recruitment marketing materials for a more transparent view into your company

Tip #3: Emphasize Opportunity & Impact

Make job posts more compelling by highlighting the opportunities associated with a position, not just the responsibilities. A focus on opportunity—specifically, how a position has a broader impact—can help you attract candidates that are interested in more than just compensation and perks. Compelling job post descriptions will also help get more applicants through the door, enabling you to pick from the best of the best.

What to Do:

Rather than state that a position requires “the creation of marketing materials” share that the position will “enable you to shape the tone, voice, and content of materials put to market, to contribute to our company’s goal of increasing sales by 15% this year and developing a cutting-edge brand”. This can also be an opportunity to showcase a bit of your company’s personality.

Plus, research finds that having a sense of purpose (making an impact) is the most important factor for 60 percent of millennial job seekers.4

Tip #4: Identify Where You Find Your Best Employees

Where do your best applicants traditionally come from? Job boards? Career fairs? Your career portal? Do you know? Evaluating these sourcing channels gives you the ability to invest your time and resources more strategically. It could be the case the majority of your best hires heard about openings from your career portal— or maybe it was Twitter. Collect data on all sourcing channels and consider cutting back those that don’t yield strong hires.

What to Do:

Track source effectiveness with technology that does it all for you. Robust dashboard reporting can give users constant visibility into sourcing channel activity, and reports categorizing candidates by sourcing channel can be generated for an analysis of returns on investment.

Tip #5: Remember, It’s a Two-Way Street

The perfect candidate match is just that—a match! Exclusively focusing on how a candidate measures up to your standards can prevent you from measuring up to theirs. The best hires will be those that see you as a perfect fit for them, and they’ll be more engaged in their roles as a result.

What to Do:

Be prepared to explain why a candidate should want to work for your organization. This is important at all stages of recruitment, but critical during phone interviews and interviews with hiring managers, when candidates get the chance to pose their own questions. For an adequate response, be sure you understand what today’s job seekers actually want. Talking about a Christmas bonus probably won’t cut it. Treat candidates like you’d treat your customers. Yes, this means “candidate satisfaction” is a thing, and it matters. A great candidate experience includes many components, but at minimum, it means making every candidate feel like a priority. Accomplish this with consistent communication, ample information, consistent transparency, and a flawless interview process.

How iCIMS Can Help

iCIMS is the leading provider of talent acquisition solutions that help businesses win the war for top talent. iCIMS empowers companies to manage their entire hiring process within the industry’s most robust Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS). Built on the foundation of a best-to-market talent acquisition software suite, iCIMS’ PaaS framework, UNIFi, allows employers to expand the capabilities of their core talent acquisition technology by integrating with the largest partner ecosystem in talent acquisition to help them attract, find, screen, and manage candidates. Offering scalable, easy-to-use solutions that are backed by award-winning customer service, iCIMS supports more than 3,500 contracted customers and is one of the largest and fastest-growing talent acquisition solution providers.

1 Hiring Insights, Strategies to Improve the Recruiter and Hiring Manager Relationship
2 Hiring Insights, The New Era of Talent Acquisition
3 Hiring Insights, The New Era of Talent Acquisition
4 Deloitte Millennial Survey http://www2.deloitte.com/global/en/pages/about-deloitte/articles/millenn...