Text Your Applicants – How to Do It & Why It Works

Text Your Applicants – How to Do It & Why It Works

by Lynna Peterson

We live in a world run by smart phones and text messages.

We can rent a movie, order dinner, and confirm an airplane ticket right from our pockets. Smartphones, along with texting, have become a common necessity in today’s day and age. It is not out of the ordinary for you to receive text notifications from various service providers ranging from doctor appointment reminders, to alerting you that your car service is done. With these technological advances in all other aspects of the world, it only makes sense to utilize them in the hiring industry as well. More specifically texting your applicants.

You’re probably thinking “What’s so great about texting anyway?”

At first glance, the idea of texting your applicants sounds scary. No professional loves the idea of calling applicants from their personal cell phone, let alone sending something as “casual” as a text message. While text messages may feel informal and possibly unprofessional, studies show it’s one of the most efficient means of communication today.

Most text messages are read within three minutes of receiving, while it can take hours – if not days – for a person to check and read their email messages. Sending a text message will start the conversation with your applicant faster, which will in turn lead to a shorter time-to-fill for your open positions. Speeding up your hiring process not only benefits your company, but helps your applicant feel more connected and informed throughout the hiring process. “But we’ve always sent emails!” It is this dated way of thinking that keeps the HR industry a step behind in the game. In today’s hiring game, you have to think like your applicants and applicants prefer text.

ApplicantPro makes texting applicants easier than ever.

With this new approach, ApplicantPro has integrated a texting platform that works just like email right within our system. Your process in the system is exactly like sending an email, but the applicant receives the messages as a text. This protects your privacy, while still connecting and engaging with your applicants faster than ever.

Now that we know WHY texting works, you’re probably wondering what are some best practices to implementing texting into your process? By following a few simple rules, you’ll be able to uphold your company brand, maintain your professionalism, and take part in prompt, effective communication!

Rule 1: Clearly introduce yourself right off the bat.

Starting a text by stating not only your name, but your role, and the company you work for help builds your credibility, but also gets your foot in the door with the job seeker. No one wants to answer text messages, from a stranger, so having a solid introduction will increase your response rate.

Example:

Hi, Betty, this is Joan in HR from ABC Company.

Rule 2: Keep your message short and sweet.

Remember, a text is brief and meant to be read and responded to quickly. While you want to be clear in your messaging, there is no need to go into overwhelming details like you would in an email.

Example:

I’ve reviewed your resume and would love to chat with you about the XYZ position. Are you available for a phone call Monday at 3 PM?

Rule 3: Don’t be afraid to stay in touch!

Text messages open up the lines for two-way communication between you and the applicant. A text can be the perfect platform to remind an applicant of an upcoming meeting, or answer a resume question you may have. Keep texts open ended by allowing room for the applicant to ask you questions, change the venue for an interview, or even thank you for the opportunity. A text message is always a great way to send a follow up message after an interview!

Examples:

I just wanted to confirm our phone call at 3 PM today. Does this time still work for you?

Thanks for your time yesterday, Betty. If you have any other questions we didn’t cover, don’t hesitate to ask.

Rule 4: Don’t assume all of your applicants prefer text messaging over email interaction.

Have them select a preferred method of contact on their initial application so you know whether a call, email, or text is most appropriate.

Want to see these rules in action? Let’s try them out. Here is a good example of a text message used to set up an interview:

Example:

“Hi Joe, this is Brooke, the hiring manager from Peterson Foods. We’ve received your application for our Cashier position and would like to set up an interview for next week. What day is best?”

Here is a good example of a “stay in touch” message to confirm an upcoming meeting:

“Hi Joe, its Brooke again. just wanted to confirm our meeting this Thursday at 1pm at Peterson Foods. Are we still on for that time?”

Bonus: What to avoid when texting applicants:

Now that you know what you do want to do when texting applicants, let’s go over what you want to avoid.

Don’t send text messages from your personal cell phone! Text your applicants directly within ApplicantPro keeps everything in one place and most importantly protects your privacy. There is no need to ever use your personal phone number to contact applicants.

Don’t use abbreviations or slang! While it is true that texting is a more relaxed form of communication, you’re still a professional and a direct representative of your company and we know how important it is to uphold your brand.

By following these helpful best practices, you will be able to seamlessly incorporate text messaging into your hiring process and speed up time-to-hire immensely! For more information on how to use text communication with your applicants, reach out to a member of ApplicantPro’s team today!


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