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How to Use Your Web Site to Hire

May 13, 1999
Related Topics: Internet, Candidate Sourcing, Featured Article
Is your Web site designed for customers... or candidates? In today's tight labor market, it should be designed for both. Here are some tips on creating a candidate-friendly Web site.

Recruiting is More Marketing, than Selling:
Don’t sell the job; this cheapens it, and drives candidates away. Market the opportunity and the company. You’ll attract more candidates, and close on better terms. Make the position worth having. Candidates will

then sell you.

Create Compelling Jobs:
Rewrite ads and all job descriptions describing what candidates will be doing, not what they need to have. Having-based ads restrict the candidate pool. Doing-based ads expand the number applying. Describe where candidates are going, not where they’ve been.

Create Career Opportunities, not Jobs:
Present the company vision on your site. Describe where the company is going. This is important for customers, as well as current and future employees. Be forward-looking. Replace words "job" and "employment" with "opportunity."

Reach Out:
Broadcast your site. The best candidates won’t come to you without effort. Create links to other sites with banner ads on related technical, trade, career sites, and even non-job-related activity sites (movies, games, sports, books) to interest less active candidates. This is the pool of candidates you need to attract. Get them to your site early and often.

Hit ‘em When They’re Not Looking:
Register your job description pages and your main career section (not just your home page) with all the major search engines. Add lots of related keywords. When people search for anything related to your opportunity, it will show up on their listing. You’ll get plenty of added clicks to your site if your description is compelling.

Capture Candidates:
Stay connected. When people get to your career opportunity section, ask for referrals, provide a career-search agent, let them join on forum, conduct a survey, or recommend a friend.

Add Value:
Be a resource. Provide something other than a job as a reason for a potential candidate to visit your site. Have a reason for people to come back to your site—things like free downloads, a technical white paper, hosting a discussion group, or interview/resume advice.

Raise the Importance of Hiring:
Make your "career opportunities" section as visible as your products. Upgrade the staffing group. Make staffing a top objective for every manager, and make this part of their performance review. You can’t hire the best people if you don’t have your best people involved.

Become an Employer of Choice:
Use your web page and Internet strategy to tie all the sourcing pieces together. The best candidates accept offers because of the quality of the company, the opportunity presented, the leadership quality of the hiring manager, and the professionalism of the whole process. Your web site is the first evidence of this. Make it work for you. One weak link will preclude you from hiring the best.

SOURCE: Lou Adler, president of CJA—The Adler Group, and author of the book Hire With Your Head.

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