Career Site Playbook
Excite top talent by transforming your website into your best recruiter
A strong career site is critical to exciting top talent about joining your team. Whether your team is actively recruiting or has hiring on hold at this time, building and maintaining an engaging career site and employer brand can help set you up for success in the long run.
As a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the job market has seen a significant shift. Kicking off 2020, unemployment was at a historic low and there were more open roles than available talent to fill them. In light of the pandemic, many businesses have been forced to temporarily close, leading to a spike in unemployment claims.
Given this shift in the job market, some employers are facing layoffs and hiring freezes, while others – such as those in the healthcare space, grocery delivery services and more – have seen increased demand need to fill open roles as soon as possible.
If your team isn’t hiring at this time, you can spend time focusing on building a strong career site to build a pipeline of talent for when hiring picks back up. And if you’re actively filling open roles, a strong career site can help you capture the attention of the millions of job seekers who are now looking for new opportunities.
In this playbook, we’ve outlined several best practices for your team to build the best career site possible and, as a result, attract qualified candidates.
Craft Compelling Career Site Content
The most engaged, quality job seekers apply to open roles via career sites, rather than simply clicking “apply” across several job boards.
Hireology data found that 85 percent of applicants that apply via career sites are considered quality and result in 30 percent of overall hires. This is because motivated job seekers want to learn more about potential employers, the opportunity their open roles present and whether or not they’re truly a fit before applying.
Sell Job Seekers on Joining Your Team
To secure top talent, your career site needs to answer the “What’s in it for me?” question for job seekers. The ultimate goal of your career site content should be to answer any questions job seekers have about what it’s like to work for your organization. Make sure the following questions are answered through your career site content:
- How many employees do you have, and across how many locations?
Include a list of your locations.
- What is a unique story you want prospective applicants to know about your company?
In 10-15 words or less, explain why potential applicants should work for your team instead of competitors.
- How long have you been in business and what can you share about your company’s history or values?
Highlight how much your company has grown, any unique challenges you have overcome and how your company values contribute to your overall success. You want prospective applicants to be bought in and motivated by your company values.
- Has your company won any awards?
Highlight these awards, why they’re important and any relevant images on your career site. Job seekers will be especially excited to see if you’ve won any “Best Places to Work” awards.
- What are the benefits you offer employees?
Include a bulleted list and explain how each benefit is unique.
- What do career paths look like at your organization?
Today’s job seekers want to build long-term careers with their employers. Share examples of career paths across a few different departments so prospective applicants can envision growing their careers on your team.
- Do you have employee success stories or testimonials to share?
Providing authentic and authoritative testimonials from employees builds more trust among prospective applicants. Ask each employee to write 2-3 sentences about why they enjoy working on your team and how they’ve moved up in their careers.
- Does your company participate in any volunteer programs or extracurricular activities?
Include pictures showcasing this involvement and write a brief description explaining why the volunteer programs or extracurricular activities are meaningful to your company.
- If you had to encourage a job seeker to apply to your open roles using only one sentence, what would it be?
This is your primary value statement. This statement should let job seekers know they’ve come to the right place and lets them know how you can solve their problems.
Employment Brand Playbook
Today’s applicants need to see more than a list of requirements to apply for a new role. Uncover to build your online reputation and employer brand.
Keep Your Career Site Up-to-Date
Once you have initial career site content built out, you shouldn’t stop there. It’s important to regularly share the latest compelling content – such as any new awards, employee testimonials or benefits.
- Awards and company highlights – As your company receives new awards or reaches certain milestones, make sure to showcase these on your career site. Beyond “Best Places to Work” awards, you might reach a certain employee count milestone, celebrate a key number of years in business, and more. Include pictures on your career site highlighting this exciting news.
- Employee testimonials – Just as you likely do with customer testimonials and case studies, you should have a process in place for updating employee success stories and testimonials. At least once a year, identify employees who have been promoted or have otherwise had a great experience with your organization and ask if they’re willing to share a testimonial on your career site.
- Updated benefits – As your organization adds any new employee benefits, make sure these are shared on your career site so new job seekers can see what your team has to offer. Beyond standard health and paid time off benefits, these might include team outings, social events, professional development reimbursement and volunteer opportunities.
- Other relevant or timely updates as needed – In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, job seekers want to know what employers are doing to keep staff safe at this time. Include a few sentences on your career site highlighting your commitment to employees’ health and safety.
Follow Media Best Practices
Regularly refresh any images and videos on your career site, so job seekers can visualize what it’s like to work for your team. Here are some best practices to keep in mind for images on your career site:
- If the image contains people and faces – make sure that you can see the faces clearly.
- If you would like a certain image to be used as a header banner across the top portion of your career site, please be sure the image is abstract and does not include any text or people in it.
- Images must be of high-quality as to see all the encompassing elements (big or small).
- All photographs should be in JPEG format and all other images like illustrations or decorative elements should be PNG files.
- Remember, the images on your Career Site are a major part of ensuring a good first impression with a user, so make sure you’re only submitting quality content.
- If you have images of your team, members of their family, or their children on your career site, be sure to obtain their written permission to share to ensure you’re maintaining compliance.
Include an Option to Connect with Job Seekers
Even if you don’t have an immediate opening, you should have a few jobs posted on your career site, or at least a way for job seekers to reach out to your team.
You might want to consider keeping roles open for jobs you tend to fill regularly. Continuous job openings show your business is successful and growing, and can help you capture strong candidates when you least expect it. Waiting until you have an immediate hiring need to open a job can leave you scrambling to hire a replacement.
During these uncertain times surrounding COVID-19, many employers have hiring completely on hold. If this is the case with your team and you know you won’t have any immediate openings, you can still include an option on your career site for job seekers to get in touch about future opportunities. This will enable your team to build a pipeline of prospective candidates that you can tap into once hiring picks back up.
Candidate Engagement Playbook
Read this resource to learn candidate communication best practices and keep top talent engaged.
Reach Top Job Seekers
In addition to visiting employers’ career sites directly and searching on traditional job boards, job seekers are increasingly turning to search engines like Google during the job search.
Up to 70 percent of job searches begin on Google, meaning it’s critical for your team to ensure your open roles are reaching job seekers in Google search results.
Write Search-Friendly Job Descriptions
Your job descriptions are a significant piece of your career site content and it’s important to write job descriptions with Google search results in mind. We’ve highlighted some tips to do so below.
- Keep job titles short and sweet – Avoid including anything in your job titles about sign-on bonuses or other added details in the job title. In Google results, standard job titles that are most likely to match what job seekers are searching rank higher in search results.
- Write concise job descriptions– Your job descriptions should ideally between 300 and 800 words. In your job description, share what makes your team stand out – including a strong company overview, list of responsibilities and requirements, an overview of your benefits and opportunities for career growth.
- Share your organization’s exact address – Job descriptions that include a full address and specific locations (if there are multiple locations) are more likely to rank higher in job search results.
- Include an Equal Opportunity Statement – Simply including this statement at the bottom of your job descriptions and on your career site can help you improve search results and stand out as a top employer. Here’s an example of an Equal Opportunity Statement: “We’re an equal opportunity employer. All applicants will be considered for employment without attention to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, veteran or disability status.”
- Regularly refresh your jobs – Older job postings do not rank well in Google results, so make sure to refresh your jobs at least every 30 days. Also avoid refreshing your jobs too frequently, or your postings might be flagged as spam.
Writing Effective Job Descriptions
Get our guide that walks you through several steps for creating effective job descriptions
Make Your Career Site Easy to Find
Some organizations have strong career sites, but it’s difficult for interested job seekers to find on the main company website. Many prospective applicants might visit your website interested in a job and if they don’t find a career page or list of job openings, they’ll leave your website and look elsewhere. Consider including a link to your career page in the top navigation of your home page and in the footer of your website so job seekers can find your open roles easily.
Support a Mobile-Friendly Career Site
Over 90 percent of job applicants use their mobile devices at some point in the process when searching for their next career moves.
If your team doesn’t offer a mobile-friendly experience for job applicants, you’ll likely lose top talent to other employers who have a strong mobile strategy in place. Here are some tips to reach job seekers who are searching for their next role on their mobile devices.
Write Career Site Content for Mobile Applicants
When prospective applicants view job opportunities on their phones and other mobile devices, you’ll only have their attention for a short period of time before they continue looking at other open roles. Because of this, you have to need a mobile-friendly career site that is easy for prospective job applicants to quickly scan from their phones.
Best practices for mobile-friendly career site content include: short paragraphs, short sentences, a good amount of white space, engaging images and short videos. All of these features will make it easier for job seekers to scan your page on their smaller, mobile screens before applying.
Include an Option to Apply Via Mobile
Up to 1 in 4 job seekers apply to open roles via mobile devices – and this number continues to grow. If you don’t have an option available, prospective job applicants might overlook your open roles and move on to other opportunities by the time they reach a desktop computer – causing you to miss out on quality talent.
To avoid driving away applicants looking to apply via mobile, make sure your job applications are mobile-enabled – and don’t require too many steps to apply, so the application is easy to complete on-the-go. Not only is typing a significant amount of information into a job application time consuming on mobile, but applicants also might not have their resume files saved on their mobile devices.
Rather than having candidates type every detail from their resumes or upload their resumes via mobile, ask candidates to fill out basic contact information such as their email address and phone numbers. Then, offer an option for candidates to simply include a link to their LinkedIn profiles. If your application gets much longer, prospective applicants might drop out of the application process – especially if they’re on their mobile devices.
Share Job Openings on Social Media
Once you have an engaging career site and well-developed job descriptions, you’ll want to start spreading the word about your open roles.
Beyond visiting your career site directly, perusing job boards and searching on Google, many job seekers find new opportunities on social media sites such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. And social media is a cost-effective way to reach engaged job seekers.
Here are some best practices to excite job seekers who come across your career site or open roles on social media.
Audit Your Current Social Media Presence
To get started with social media recruitment, take a quick audit of the channels where your brand is currently active. In addition to LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter, you may tap into other networks like Instagram or Snapchat, but these specialized networks likely won’t drive many interested applicants to apply. Instead, focus on more content-focused networks to share your openings.
If you’re not active on LinkedIn and Facebook, make sure to build profiles on each network that link to your career site.
Write Custom Content for Each Network
Crafting customized messages for each platform will showcase your social savviness and will likely drive more engagement. Here’s how to best communicate across each network.
- LinkedIn is the premier professional social media network. You can leverage your LinkedIn company profile to highlight your current open positions and a link to your career site. Not only will members who follow your company see job openings, but those with skills or titles related to your job description will see your posting through the “Jobs You May Be Interested In” feature. And you can reach even more candidates through LinkedIn Sponsored Jobs.
- Facebook is great for longer-form updates. Feel free to include a few sentences about your excitement to share the position, location, and role-specific details to get prospective applicants interested in applying.
Recruitment Marketing Playbook
Read this guide for additional tips on reaching job seekers with an effective sourcing strategy.
Start Driving Results Now
Your employees are your primary differentiator no matter the economic conditions. Whether or not you have an immediate hiring need, developing a strong career site and employer brand takes time – and doing so can help you stand out from other employers.
Not only can an engaging career site help you excite top talent about joining your team, but it can also drive cost savings – Hireology data found that career sites are more cost-effective than job boards alone when it comes to attracting qualified candidates. And driving cost savings during the hiring process and elsewhere across the business is more important than ever given the uncertainty and economic impact of COVID-19.
Hireology is here to help you excite top talent and put your best team in place – if you have any questions or need assistance, contact your Hireology Customer Success Manager or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Are you interested in learning more about how to build an effective career site? See a demo today.