hr talking with direct interest job seeker

A Breakdown to Convert Direct Interest Job Seekers

This may be a little different than previous blog posts. We're going to have a little tear-down planning session.

I'm going to run through each of the direct interest sources and help you make a roadmap for setting up a source. You will be able to get the initial momentum going to reach the point of inertia for that source.

You will walk away with an understanding of...

  • Direct interest sources
  • The roadmap
  • How to set up the flywheel
  • Tasks to accomplish to build up initial momentum
  • Questions to ask to identify the type of fuel you can add
  • The kind of friction you can reduce, and
  • Changes to make to keep the flywheel spinning, even if the world changes.

Before we jump in...

Let's remember why this matters.

We have to expand our sourcing beyond just job boards. When we do that, we focus on what I call high power sources. These are sources that...

  • Will attract candidates that you're most likely to hire.
  • Will generate the highest quality candidates with the least amount of effort.

Once we focus and optimize these sources, we can build flywheels that spin faster and feed themselves in the future.

One of the most powerful sources for qualified applicants is direct interest...

Sourcing Mix & Power Dashboard

Identify which sources generate the most qualified applicants!

  • These are people who know, like, and trust your brand, your products, and your services.
  • They know, like, and have experience with your culture and your values.
  • They want to be a part of it, regardless of what job they do.
  • They are people who are fans of your company.

These people become very high-powered hires! They start ahead of the curve, ahead of those people who just come to us from job boards because they have already taken a sip of your company Kool-Aid.

Because of this, they make awesome employees. They know the story of your company, brand, products, and more. Most likely they have worked with you in some way or have been a customer of yours previously.

Remember the flywheel!

The direct interest flywheel comes down to five main areas.

  1. Who are you targeting?
  2. How do you get their attention?
  3. How do you make it engaging and exciting?
  4. What is your call to action?
  5. How do you convert them from job seekers to applicants?

Now, when it comes to the job seeker, there are two main types...

Active and Passive

Active job seekers are people who know about you. They have already decided to see what work opportunities are available with your company. They have direct interest. These job seekers either come from Web Traffic or previous applicants.

Let's break down your Active Web Traffic job seekers... These are people who come to your website, who have already thought, "oh my gosh, I love that company. I wonder if they're hiring." That is the core question that an active job seeker who loves your company has in mind.

Who are you targeting?

You're targeting people who land on your company website, but already in their minds are looking for what jobs you have available. So you have to ask yourself...

How do you get their attention?

The easiest way to get their attention is to walk through this process for yourself. Go to your website, put on your "I'm somebody who's a fan of the company and I'm actively trying to figure out what jobs are available" hat, and then walk the process.

The header menu and the footer menu are the core areas for getting active job seekers pointed and sent to your careers page.

Right upfront in the top menu, there should be a button that says "careers", "jobs" or "we're hiring". It HAS to be up there in the top menu. Understand that people who land on your website and are interested in working for you, if they don't see it in the header, they'll scroll down to the footer. So the secondary call to action or point of attention would be on the footer.

When one of those job seekers comes and lands on your careers page, you need a page there that introduces your company.

  • Why are you a great place to work as a company?
  • What is it about your culture and values that make your employees love working with you?
  • What would an employee tell their family and friends about working for you? Is there a reason why they love working for our company?
  • What is it about our management team- our approach, the way that we treat our employees, the way our employees treat each other?
  • What is it about working for Your company that makes it rewarding?

What is your call to action?

Once the job seeker has read or watched the video, about what makes your company a great place to work and you've got them excited... show them the jobs that you have available. Your call to action involves the jobs you currently have available. Send them to those job ads...but first, make sure the job ads are engaging!

What is your conversion?

The conversion is an online application. If you want to make the online application work and convert as many people as possible, it needs to be focused on reducing friction. This online application needs to...

  • Make it easy for job seekers to apply
  • Make it easy for you to classify and properly disqualify those who aren't great,
  • Move the best ones to the top with the minimal amount of effort required on your part.

This means your application should be less than five minutes. It should be focused purely on an initial expression of interest, not an employment application. It includes job questions (around 10-15 multiple choice and fill in the blank), resume attachment, and how they heard about the job... that's it.

You are NOT...

  • Asking for references,
  • Asking for a detailed 10-year work history
  • Asking for their entire educational background,
  • Asking for them to give you all the information you need to hire them.

You are asking for the minimum effective dose of information you need to figure out whether they meet your basic qualifications. Then rank them. Put the top candidates at the top of the list.

Doing this will give you enough information to decide if we want to interview them. That is the goal of the initial expression of interest.

How do you turn this direct interest source into a flywheel that spins on its own?

After someone applies, you should direct them to a thank you page. This thank you page should drive the next event, driving them to share this job with their friends and family.Because here's the cool thing about direct interest people:

They can be a great direct interest referral source for new applicants.

That only works if the experience around that flywheel was a positive one- The experience of...

  • Learning about what makes your company great as an employer,
  • Learning about an individual job, and especially
    • Applying in a way that showed them respect for their time.

If the entire experience is great, you can use the thank you page and thank you message to drive more direct interest applicants into the flywheel. Ask them if they know anybody else looking for a job. Suggest they share the job openings out there with the world.

There is potential to ask applicants for referrals! Remember, this person is interested in working for you. Make sure any referral they send for another job opening doesn't reduce their chances of getting hired!

What about previous applicants?

Take people who have expressed interest in a previous position at your company and move them to another job. You may say "well, you applied for job one, but you might be a better fit for job two".

The Five Core Types of Passive Job Seekers are...

  1. Web Traffic
  2. Facebook/Social media
  3. Customer communication
  4. Walk-in customers
  5. Older Previous Applicants

You should break each of these up and run through the flywheel for each.

Let's break down your passive web traffic job seekers...

There is a difference between web traffic from job seekers, and web traffic from our customers and prospects. You're going to have to ask yourself one core question: "How do I get web traffic to switch their mindset from buying mode to job seeker mode?" The way you do this is a little bit more tricky. As we previously mentioned, adding the header and the footer menu is a good start that might trigger their attention. But you have to think about...

Who are you targeting?

The people you're targeting are customers who haven't yet made the connection... Along with being a great place to buy something, you could also be a great place to work.

How do you get their attention?

You have to get a little bit deeper with the marketing team here. We asked ourselves, "Where do customers hang out on our site?"

The way we get their attention is like a virtual version of a "help wanted" sign. It's a little more than just throwing a careers button in the header and the footer of the menus. It might be that we have to actually create a help wanted sign that we throw as an ad in the product or the different content pages on our site or our blog...

Work with the marketing team to grab some type of "help wanted" graphic that will disrupt the readers' flow. Seeing the help wanted ad triggers their attention. They will click to learn more about what you have to offer as an employer.

We don't want to get in the way of driving direct interest customers into the buying funnel. But some of those customers might be triggered to go look at your careers page. At the end of the day our careers page can actually feed people to become customers. This right here is how HR can work with marketing in a way that is constructive for both and pays off for both.

Build a two-sided win-win relationship with HR and Marketing

Your sales and marketing process can feed customers AND new employees into your company... While, vice versa, your recruiting engine can drive new employees AND customers to your company.

This is a true win-win partnership between marketing and the recruiting side of the team. Ensure that you're working together. We don't want it viewed as a leaching relationship on the other side. It should be a truly positive, constructive, two-sided win-win relationship.

Ask yourself...

How can our marketing and sales process generate new employees for our company?


How can our recruiting process generate customers for the company?

Help both sides see that they can scratch each other's back. This is the same for all sources of your direct interest passive job seekers. When it comes to...

  • That flywheel for web traffic...
  • The flywheel for Facebook or social following...
  • Customer communication, and
  • Walk-in customers...

We're really talking about HR's ability to identify customers and prospects of our company as amazing qualified job seekers. We must be able to find a way to disrupt their flow in the buying process without stopping them from buying. Open up the concept in the customer's head- along with a great place to buy something, you would be a great place to work.

Take the time to sit down with your marketing team

Find alignment to get to the "Aha moment" where both HR and the marketing team realize...

  • We are targeting the same demographic.
  • We are going into market with different messages, but to similar people, and

If we work together, we can find a constructive way to feed valuable people into each other's flywheels.

You'll find the greatest flywheel success when the recruiting and marketing teams work together. Feed off of each other! Help each other's flywheels work together.

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