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Hire Top Talent: The Best Way to Contact Candidates and Engage Them

The way you contact candidates is a key pillar of the hiring process. The way a recruiter communicates creates a first impression that will define the recruiter and company brand. This impression can become a decisive factor in whether a person decides to apply for a position.

Believe it or not, according to Hired, 90% of recruiting emails are not personalized at all. Know the feeling when you open your email box and see dozens of newsletters with standard titles and cliche text? How likely are you to get interested in any of them? Writing good recruiting messages and building an efficient communication process is not easy. But almost everyone can master it. Read our blog post to find out how.

Effective candidate communication: why it matters

Before starting to contact candidates, each recruiter needs to know where and with whom to interact. You need to find out all the touchpoints of your potential candidates and what they seek to accomplish at each of them. Usually, these touchpoints are:

  • When candidates look for career updates
  • When candidates apply for positions for the first time
  • One week after application submission
  • When the position closes

The candidate experience is a journey that consists of micro experiences. You need to understand exactly what you will communicate at each of these stages, what the candidate really wants to hear, and the outcome you want to reach. This will help you determine how you can help the candidate at each stage of the journey.

Walk in the shoes of your passive and active candidates from beginning to end and then see how you would feel. 

David Bernstein from JobSync

You can only start building rapport after effective communication. Due to COVID-19, most companies still hire remotely, which has influenced the communication experience. Video interviewing is a must-have for recruitment teams in 2021, so make this as smooth as possible. Establish a process for how interviews will be run remotely and a set of guidelines for how to conduct remote interviews. This will allow everyone at the company to stay on the same page.

One of the most sizable challenges when going remote is keeping everyone in the loop in an efficient way. Put concerted effort around systematically documenting important process changes in a central place to minimize confusion and dysfunction

Darren Murph, Head of Remote at GitLab

When corporate communication is standardized, candidates always get a consistent experience and are more likely to recommend your company to their peers. So what are the key elements of successful communication? Keep reading to learn more.

Keys to successful candidate communication: what you should remember

If you want to create a positive experience for job seekers, you need to think through your communication process from the very beginning till the end. Here’s how you can do this.

Be transparent and don’t keep candidates in the dark

According to a study from CareerArc, 65% of job seekers say they rarely or never hear back after applying for a job. So, to stand out among your competitors, ensure that your communication is regular. Keep them consistently updated about the status of their application.

How can you do this? First of all, be transparent about how and when you will communicate, what the process will be, and how long it will take. Always inform candidates about the next steps and keep them involved in the process. Even if you’ve decided to reject a candidate, always email a personalized rejection with honest feedback and tips for improving. It will leave a positive impression of your company and candidates may apply for other positions in the future.

Contact candidates with personalized message

This is what any communication should include: 

  • The name of the candidate with a greeting,
  • the opportunity the candidate is seeking (i.e., a job title), and
  • the name of the employer

A reaching out to candidate email should read like you are reaching out to a friend. If you are using AI recruitment tools, make sure to set basic personalization capabilities. Another important factor is the speed of communication. Your task is to quickly get them through the hiring pipeline and respond as quickly as possible to make the best candidates enter your hiring process. You can also call the candidate if you need a faster response. Every moment counts, even in recruiting.

Build a talent community database

If you find candidates and then let them go as soon as the position is closed, you’re leaving a big opportunity on the table. Of course, creating a great applicant pool requires looking for new candidates, but don’t forget to engage passive candidates. This is how you will find future employees and referrals. You can start by creating a quarterly talent community newsletter that includes company updates, open positions, product updates, and interesting content. 

And remember to bring value. This is the only way to make people interested in what you do. If you know how to find candidates on LinkedIn, you can also share interesting content on your personal recruiter page and engage your audience in the comments.

Automated communication in recruitment: best strategies

The best way to fill gaps in communication and contact candidates more effectively is to automate it. For example, we at Employa provide recruiters with the Employa candidate portal. It is an easy-to-use platform to communicate with candidates, schedule emails, send follow-ups, and stay tuned for updates. Here are some ways you can automate recruiting communications:

  • Use automated text messaging tools

Write messages or customize pre-written templates once, then schedule them to be sent automatically at the right time to the right people. Use personalization tags so the messages feel like one-to-one communications. You can also use automated text messaging to keep candidates warm and engaged throughout the hiring process. For example, the Fountain ai recruitment tool allows for contacting a hiring manager and knowing their exact status in the hiring process at any given time without taking up the recruiting team’s time manually responding to candidate point emails.

  • Implement AI-powered chatbots

AI-powered chatbots help recruiters manage their new workload by automating screening and scheduling. Thus, recruiters can focus 100% of their time on important tasks only a human could do. Chatbots can improve your candidate experience by creating a seamless hiring experience with personalization and reaching out to contacts with a human touch.

  • Trigger emails and text messages to candidates at each phase of the hiring process

Recruiters can send automated emails to candidates depending on where they are in the hiring pipeline. Such tools help to notify disqualified candidates and invite top candidates to stay in touch for future opportunities. The GR8 recruitment automation tool is an example of such a system. It helps engage talent pools to find and communicate with the best candidates.

New ways to contact candidates and keep them engaged

To wrap it up, make sure to follow these simple rules to keep your communication with candidates on a high level.

  • Visit local events and conferences to meet new people in your industry
  • Round-up past candidates when creating a new job position
  • Create a referral program and incentivize employees to be ambassadors and spread the message about your company
  • Use artificial intelligence to screen candidates more efficiently with automated question
  • Reach out to candidates throughout the entire hiring process, from confirming the receipt of an application or resume to notifications about the decision-making process
  • Make sure you are not leaving candidates in the dark and are always transparent about the hiring process
  • Build a network of potential candidates to reach out to when you need it
  • Ask for feedback when creating a new job position

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