More than half of employers admit in a new CareerBuilder study that it has grown increasingly difficult to find qualified candidates in the past five years. The study examined responses from 5,013 job candidates and 2,002 hiring managers in the U.S. in February.
Great news, though. The answer to the recruiting problem might lie within the app that has everyone checking their phones multiple times a day for snippets of entertainment: SnapChat.
A May 2015 KPCB report shows the growing popularity of the app. As of March, SnapChat usage by American youth has increased 11 percent from a year ago, with 57 percent of active users aged 12 to 24.
SnapChat users love creating and viewing six-second video content. What’s even more interesting is the recent trend toward five-second ads noted in KPCB’s report. The momentary ads serve the increasing consumer need for faster, more convenient access to information.
The basic principles surrounding short-form messaging tools like these might be the perfect way to find the talent entrepreneurs seek in today’s complex job market.
Here are some ways entrepreneurs can streamline their hiring process by adopting SnapChat principles:
1. Be everywhere.
Posting available positions to just one or a few places won’t cut it. It’s common for candidates to use 18 sources during their job search, according to CareerBuilder. Attract and engage a wide range of talent in the same way SnapChat users engage followers: share available positions with all followers.
Post opportunities as status updates on all social media sites and pin announcements at the top of all social profiles as a standing message. Just as SnapChatters use the “your story” feature to showcase recent happenings to anyone who cares to view, do the same with new ways to creatively express job opportunities.
2. Leverage mobile.
Spending on mobile Internet advertising increased 34 percent this year, according to KPCB. The study found time spent viewing information on mobile screens has increased from 0.4 percent in 2010 to nearly 10 percent today. Mobile optimization is a trend that cannot be ignored.
Make it easy for applicants to access information about the position and company and apply for the job via mobile devices. Place jobs on platforms with responsive design and optimize the company career page for mobile. Use Google Analytics or a tool like Bitly to track where applicant traffic comes from.
3. Tell your story with video.
Mobile video traffic is on the rise, according to the KPCB study, reaching 55 percent this year -- up from 50 percent in 2012. Even more interesting is the commercial trend toward five-second advertisements. It’s clear the best way to deliver messages short and sweet is visually, just as SnapChat does.
Create short videos to introduce talent to the company culture. Show off the employer brand -- exciting happenings in the office, unique personalities of team members and clips of celebrations. Share these clips on YouTube, Vine, Twitter and every other platform where ideal followers are active.
4. Invite talent to engage immediately.
One principle leading to SnapChat’s success is immediate user interaction. The application begins in live camera mode, without any steps in the way, prompting users to engage.
Encourage promising talent to engage by making it easy to learn about positions quickly and apply without tedious click-throughs to follow. Connect to an online talent community where candidates want to interact and engage with hiring managers immediately.
A tool like Cocoon allows for evaluating candidates through LinkedIn profiles and asking a few questions to create matches to available positions. The app is best on mobile devices so employers can view and chat with interested candidates quickly on-the-go.
5. Be more responsive.
Responsive employers are more likely to keep on good terms with their talent pool, which includes brand advocates and even future customers. Yet, 32 percent of companies surveyed by CareerBuilder don’t feel a need to respond to everyone. That’s bad news considering 65 percent of candidates are less likely to buy from a company they didn’t hear back from after an interview.
Respond to everyone, so candidates don’t feel like they’re sending information into a black hole. Additionally, respond quickly -- otherwise the window in which the candidate is most engaged will be missed, and the candidate might not care to respond back, especially if he or she has moved on to pursue other endeavors.