Job candidates are the lifeblood of any staffing agency. However, due to rapid advances in technology, the way candidates approach the hiring process has changed. Long gone are the days when paper applications, multiple in-person interviews and lengthy staffing processes were considered the norm. Today’s candidates have come to expect a more seamless experience, comprised of simple applications, immediate feedback and a fast onboarding process. As a result, it’s become imperative for staffing agencies to not only provide this experience but also continue to adapt and evolve with their candidates.
As you start to think about your own hiring and onboarding processes, here are five simple but powerful ways you can transform how you engage and hire candidates.
1. Put your jobs front and center.
It’s a good time to be job hunting in the United States. Given all the advances in technology, it’s now easier than ever to find and start new jobs—especially contingent roles that fit a broad range of lifestyles. Unfortunately, for staffing agencies, it means your candidates have more choices than ever when it comes to finding employment. That includes working with on-demand companies, such Uber and Lyft, and Online Staffing Platforms, including Wonolo and Field Nation. In order to get a leg up on the competition, you need to make it easy for potential candidates to find your jobs and ensure you stay top of mind during their search.
2. Implement easy apply options.
Technology has reshaped the way we live our lives. Nowadays, we can book a trip, order groceries or shop for a new house, all on our smartphones. So it should come as no surprise that job candidates have come to expect this level of ease and efficiency from their future employers. As a staffing agency, it’s important that you give your candidates the ability to apply from their mobile phones by implementing easy apply options across all your job postings. In this way, you’ll not only get more applications, but you’ll also start your relationship with them on the right foot.
3. Streamline the application process.
In addition to making it easier for candidates to apply, you’ll also need to work to streamline the entire application process. Conduct an audit of your existing processes, from first interaction to first day on the job, and keep the following questions in mind: how long does it take to fill out an application? Connect with a recruiter? Fill out required compliance forms? Complete onboarding for a new job? Based on the insights you get from your audit, you can take steps to shorten and streamline the process. You might also consider investing in technology, such as on-demand platforms, digital compliance apps and virtual video systems to move candidates through the talent funnel faster.
4. Create a feedback loop.
Communication is instrumental to your agency’s success. But nowadays, that means going beyond a few phone calls and emails. It requires working closely with your candidates, to keep them up-to-date on the hiring process and their application status in real-time. While emails and phone calls certainly play a role, you’ll also want to explore new more timely channels, such as social media and text messaging. This extends to your clients as well, who now demand visibility into each part of the hiring process, including the health of your talent pipeline and relevant information about when selected candidates can start.
5. Provide an easy and transparent background check process.
Keep in mind that the hiring process doesn’t end once an offer is accepted. Your candidates still need to pass a background screen, and the easier and more transparent you make the process, the happier your candidates will be.
In some cases, you may end up hiring a really great candidate, but if they fail to pass the background screen, you’ve just created a bad experience for everyone involved. Not only will your candidate be unhappy because they are no longer employed at a job they thought they once had, but you may also have just passed on another candidate that was qualified.
A standardized screening process with transparent ETAs for when the screen will be complete eliminates scenarios like these and ensures that you’re continuing the great experience candidates had with you since the beginning.
Interested in learning more about how your staffing agency can further optimize the candidate experience? Check out our latest eBook: “Is Your Staffing Agency Ready for the New World of Work?” for more advice and best practices.