Many companies will start hiring the majority of their new employees in January and February as soon as their Q1 budgets are approved. Whether your company hires most new employees in Q1 or another time of year, it’s important to evaluate your hiring process before any surge in hiring. You should also make sure you’re following current hiring trends.
How to improve your hiring process for 2019
Update your internal processes
Set yourself up for hiring success in 2019 by making sure your hiring process is efficient and consistent. Your internal process is a great place to start. Follow the tips below to make help optimize your hiring process for hiring trends in 2019.
Use an Applicant Tracking System
Companies are quickly understanding the value of using an Applicant Tracking System (ATS). More and more companies are using an ATS to find the best talent in the shortest amount of time. An ATS can also help organize candidate evaluation and communication. This will continue to be one of the hiring trends in 2019. Ninety-eight percent of Fortune 500 companies use an ATS1. 75% of large companies use an ATS2. Even small businesses are reaping the rewards of streamlining their hiring with an ATS.
At CareerPlug, we work with all kinds of clients. From mom-and-pop businesses to the nation’s biggest franchises we help them meet their hiring needs and live up to our mission of making hiring easier.
Create and optimize new job descriptions
Take an inventory of your job descriptions.Find out what’s changed about established roles, and what new roles have been identified? Update the language of your job postings to sell your opportunities to job seekers — make sure to include the perks and benefits that come along with a job. Check out more of our tips on creating great job descriptions, which are optimized for current hiring trends.
If you have your new job postings approved internally now, you post as soon as your hiring budget is approved. CareerPlug allows hiring managers to create job templates in advance. That way, our clients can post new openings when they’re ready with just a few clicks.
Come up with sample interview questions
The best restaurants are consistent. Chefs have set recipes and managers have quality control practices in place so that diners get the best experience every time, no matter which employees are working on a particular day. What if you thought about your hiring process the same way?
When you have a consistent interview process, you can be sure that each hiring manager at your company is ranking candidates based on set criteria rather than gut feelings. When you specify the interview questions that should be asked, you have a way to consistently evaluate whether a candidate has the right skills and experience to succeed in a new role.
With CareerPlug, hiring managers can create interview scorecards, which are guides with questions and scored responses that they use to conduct interviews. Our clients value this consistency that helps ensure they’re making great hires every time.
Design experiential interviews
If you’re not already using experiential interviews, it’s time to add them to your hiring process. Experiential interviews require an interviewee to complete a task that they would encounter on the job. For example, you might ask a candidate for a customer support position to respond to a hypothetical angry client. Experiential tasks might not be appropriate for a phone screen or first interview, but they can really help you make decisions about which candidates have the skills needed to succeed in the role.
Determine who will be conducting interviews
Decide in advance who will manage each step in the hiring process, such as conducting phone screens, first interviews, second interviews and completing reference checks.
This is especially important if you don’t have an in-house recruiter. Let everyone at your company know that you’re getting ready to start hiring and ask if anyone is interested in sitting in on interviews to provide another perspective.
If you use an ATS, make sure that anyone who will be involved in the hiring process has access to your system and understands how to use it — well before your hiring rush begins. CareerPlug clients can add users to established hiring locations at no additional cost, and we have onboarding resources available to help new users get up to speed on our software.
Optimize your candidate experience
Candidates will continue to drive the job market in 2019. Great candidates expect a lot from a company’s hiring process. They want to feel understood, appreciated, and catered to. The best applicants are applying to multiple different opportunities. Make sure your hiring process is efficient, thoughtful, and attractive to job seekers so that you can stand out from your competitors.
Change how you market your company to job seekers
Whether you already use an ATS or not, think about how you’re marketing your company to job seekers (if at all). For example, your applicant-facing company description should be different than your client-facing company description. Your applicant-facing company description should describe the benefits of working at your company. In the past year, has your company description or mission changed at all? Can you upload new team photos to show what a typical day might be like at your company?
CareerPlug offers a configurable Careers Page complete with areas to include a company description, team photos, employee testimonials, perks, and benefits.
Reduce your applicant drop off rate
A CareerPlug application requires only the most essential information about an applicant, and for good reason. We’ve written before about the value in shortening an application process in order to prevent applicant drop off rates. Here, let’s take it a step further: Where are candidates who have already applied dropping off in your hiring process? How can you change your hiring process to retain good candidates?
For example, candidates might be dropping off when you ask them to fill out a formal application. Maybe the back-and-forth of the interview scheduling process is slowing you down. CareerPlug offers tools to help — like the ability to create a custom hiring workflow and integrate your Google or Outlook calendar so applicants can seamlessly schedule interviews.
Another option is considering whether text recruiting might be the best way to communicate with applicants — more about that below.
Communicate with applicants in multiple channels
Think about whether you’re communicating with applicants appropriately. Do you send applicants required forms or contact them for interviews via email and hear… crickets? The issue might be that you’re not meeting applicants where they are.
Text recruiting was one of the hottest hiring trends in 2018. It will continue to be one of the major hiring trends in 2019. We’ve written before about how text recruiting is far more effective than email at reaching and eliciting responses from applicants. Texts have a 4.9X higher open, a 7.5X higher response rate, and a 60X faster response time than email.
You should think about the roles for which you’re hiring and the potential candidates you’re looking for. Will they spend most of the time in the field or on their feet? Sending a text message to follow up on an email may be the best way to reach these candidates.
Text recruiting is helping thousands of CareerPlug clients contact and hire applicants faster.