What Movie Trailers Can Teach You About Improving Your Recruiting Process


Lights. Camera. Action. Movie trailers consistently captivate and engage their target audiences, and the way they do it provides valuable insight for improving your recruiting process and candidate experience. Today’s tight labor market means multiple industries are competing for every level of talent, from early career professionals to managers and CEOs. To stand out, it’s necessary to create an efficient process that communicates clearly, shows off your merits, and addresses the points that interest candidates most.

Speak to Their Career Journey

Movie trailers know exactly what their audience cares about most, whether it’s a slapstick comedic moment, romantic kiss between two stars, or raw footage from a documentary. When reviewing your recruiting process, that means knowing what candidates are looking for. In a LinkedIn study of 14,000 professionals, 70% said the most useful part of an interview is learning about role responsibilities.

To capture interest as early as possible, overhaul the job description to make it exciting and relevant to a candidate. Open with information that immediately identifies what’s great about the position and how it could impact an applicant’s career. Update the list of duties so it’s accurate and paints a clear picture of what life in the role would be like. Remember that a job description isn’t just a checklist; it’s essentially an ad for your opening and should entice people to apply.

Once in the interview process, take a page from the Executive VP of Global Recruiting for Salesforce, Ana Recio, by having a real conversation that digs into a candidate’s unique personal and professional goals. Doing so as early as possible, even in initial phone screens, allows you to better speak to how role responsibilities match their ambitions in the later stages of the process. Initial phone screens are also an excellent time to clearly communicate your recruiting process and set accurate expectations that the candidate can expect.

Sell the Company Culture and Benefits

After drawing an audience in, a good movie trailer tells people why they should keep watching. In your recruiting process, that means selling your company, culture, and benefits. Do you hold fun team dinners, run departmental trainings, or send employees to yearly conferences? How do you give back to your local community or support charities? What unique benefits, perks, or discounts do you provide? The combination of all these things is what makes your company culture and can be as important as compensation.

While these features can be highlighted in a job description or application page, it’s a recruiting best practice to have a document that summarizes them all. That way, you can simply attach it to interview confirmations and get candidates excited about your company before they even step through the doors. Also consider other ways of showing off your culture, whether it’s through social media or by creating a video, something that is no longer cost prohibitive. LinkedIn’s large study found that nearly half of candidates want to learn about culture from current employees, so feature employees whenever possible, encourage them to share experiences on Glassdoor and Facebook, and introduce them to candidates before or after interviews.

Focus on Efficiency

There’s a reason a movie trailer is concise. The longer it runs, the more likely audiences will lose interest, and the same goes for your recruiting process. In fact, 70% of candidates lose interest in a job within one week after their final interview if they don’t hear anything back, further highlighting the importance of communication and managing expectations. Candidate drop-off can happen at any stage in a recruiting process that stretches out for several weeks or more. Not only will applicants likely have other interviews and offers during that time, but encountering an inefficient recruiting process leaves an impression that your company operates that way in other areas too. A sense of urgency is necessary to keep the process moving, especially when competing for in-demand talent, but important steps cannot be skipped.

There are several ways to improve efficiency in your recruiting process. Decide who truly needs to interview the candidate and limit the number of these decision makers. Determine the budget before even posting the opening so that, in a final interview, a hiring manager is empowered to extend an offer without waiting for the approval of another department. Limit the total number of interviews, and ask direct, purposeful questions rather than clichés. These methods send a strong and positive message at a time when 33% of candidates who have a negative recruiting experience share that publicly on social media. To avoid that, and to secure the best talent, roll out the red carpet and make a good impression. After all, candidates are vetting your company, opportunity, and process while you are vetting them.

Improving Your Recruiting Process: A Storybook Ending

Your business isn’t a movie, but your recruiting process serves the same purpose as a movie trailer. The Forbes Human Resources Council suggests planning the recruiting process around the candidate’s (or audience’s) point of view, which is something that trailers do through clear and efficient communication. You’re home to a great company, and you’ve got an exciting opening that’s perfect for someone; it’s time to take a cue from Hollywood and draw in the crowds.

When you need assistance securing the right talent that can keep your business fully staffed and thriving, Refine Search is here.


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Recruiting Trends You Can’t Ignore in 2017


As the competition for skilled talent continues to increase, it’s important to keep up with the trends that will be shaping the recruiting landscape in 2017.

According to LinkedIn’s global recruiting trends report, 2017 will be a great year to be in talent acquisition. Talent acquisition leaders will continue to move to the forefront taking a seat at the executive table and proactively help shape the future growth of the company — yet another reason to know trends that should be on your radar this year. Working with our clients over the past year, here are the key trends we’ve seen and where we think HR leaders should focus.

Rethink the candidate experience
In today’s candidate-driven world, it’s important to stand out from the crowd if you want to hire the best of the best. Candidate experience is a single factor that can help you stay ahead of the pack. Not only that, a great hiring experience can ultimately lead to better performance on the job, research shows that 15% of candidates who have a positive hiring experience put more effort into a job.

Upgrading talent
There is no doubt that certain industries like Oil & Gas, manufacturing and utilities have been going through significant change. And with that comes the need to hire a different set of skills and competencies that may not have previously existed within these organizations. The recent downturn in Oil & Gas opened up a new window of opportunity for firms to reshape their organization and hire for roles that didn’t previously exist. But, no matter the industry, it’s always important to be asking the question “Are there talent gaps within our organization?” If yes, it’s time to fix that by bringing on a new set of skills.

Create effective employer brand messaging
With top talent getting more offers, they are in a position to pick where they want to work. This is why a compelling brand message is necessary when it comes to enticing people to work for you. According to LinkedIn’s Global recruiting trends report, over 80% of leaders acknowledge that employer branding has a significant impact on their ability to hire talent. We see this challenge first hand, especially when trying to recruit talent to remote locations. If you don’t have a strong message and story to communicate to potential candidates, they won’t engage with your brand.

Having effective brand messaging helps you connect better with the best-fit talent and increases your chances of being seen as an “Employer of Choice”. To this end, employers should push out their message to targeted and engaged audiences using social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, along with more traditional advertising tools like online job postings.

Personalize the candidate experience
With talent hunting becoming more competitive than ever, there’s a stronger need for employers to think outside the box and devise innovative strategies. 57% of leaders agree that competition for talent is their top concern. Many recruiters are using the same tactics to source candidates: 92% of recruiters use social media; there are 43,000 LinkedIn Recruiter licenses, from which 1.29 MILLION InMails get sent each month and over 6.5 million active jobs posted on LinkedIn. Do you still think you’re the only one interacting with them? You have to cut through all of the noise to make sure you get noticed. If you’re into the habit of sending the same email to potential candidates, you’re most likely driving them away. Step up your talent acquisition strategy by taking the time to tailor your communications to potential candidates.

One of the best ways to elevate your candidate experience is to keep up with regular market research. According to a recent survey, 90% of global professionals are open to hearing from recruiters about new opportunities, but recruiters aren’t sharing enough information about the culture, what it’s like to work there, what’s expected of the role, and career growth opportunities. This clearly shows that recruiters need to be more in tune with how potential candidates behave, their preferences inside and outside of work and where they want to take their careers. Bridging this gap is crucial in creating better and more personalized candidate experiences.

Build great partnerships
The stakes have been raised — A-level talent is, on average, only actively on the market for 10 days; yet companies are taking longer than ever to hire. In fact, it’s taking companies an average of 68 days to fill an open role (that’s 21 business days longer than in 2010). If you really want to hire top talent, you need to go further than your usual recruitment strategies to tap into passive candidates. This is where a reputable, experienced search firm can be useful. Building an effective partnership with the right search firm can help you woo the passive A players that aren’t actively seeking a new job, but are open to new opportunities.

In the fast-moving world of business and recruiting, you simply can’t move the needle without being aware of the emerging trends. Strategize your recruiting efforts around these trends and stay prepared for the changes coming this year and beyond.

Don’t let a top candidate slip away: 4 Simple Ways to keep them hooked


If you’ve worked in the recruiting field for awhile, you know that “Time Kills All Deals”. It’s an old saying that simply means that once an opportunity has presented itself, you’d better be ready to pounce, otherwise you will miss out.

How many times has this happened? You’ve worked hard to find, engage, interview, and move a candidate through the process. You’ve done all that it takes to excite and delight them, loved them like a new puppy. They love the company and the job, they leave the interview ready to quit their current company, and then…SILENCE! Leaving the candidate to wonder “What just happened?”

Over my 20 years of recruiting, I’ve seen companies get caught up in the craziness of their business, their schedules, and forget that candidates should be wooed through the entire process. Often, they don’t realize how damaging that radio silence is—especially when you consider that it’s a candidate-driven market.

According to BLS statistics, the unemployment rate has dropped to 2.6% for professionals 25 and older with at least a bachelor’s degree. Job seekers are getting multiple interviews and finding work far more quickly. Top Talent can pick and choose between employers.

Bottom line? Attracting and closing talent is getting more difficult. In order to hire the best employees, you need to put your best foot forward and be ready to move quickly!

Today, if there’s a fine line between winning a top-tier candidate and driving one away, the one thing you have in your control is the candidate’s experience. So here are four tips that ensure you don’t miss out on hiring the best talent.

  1. Set expectations with candidates that it may be a bit of a wild ride. While experienced hires will likely understand the madness that occurs behind the scenes, you still need to communicate. Keep it nebulous—tell them it could be tomorrow or it could be a two weeks. That way they know what to expect and you haven’t over promised. No one’s getting hurt.  
  1. Coach your hiring managers. Educate them on the state of the market in your intake meeting. Get them to understand that the best talent has to be wooed away from their respective organizations and that interviewing is a two-way street- candidates are interviewing companies as much as you are interviewing them.Did you know that the best candidates are off the market in 10 days? Set the expectation that if a great candidate comes through the door, the hiring manager may need to be ready to move quickly toward making an offer, no matter how many candidates they are expecting to see. Hiring managers also need to be prepared to provide quick and timely feedback about candidates they’ve interviewed.
  1. Provide timely updates. Even when you can’t get hiring managers to give you feedback, it’s vital that you keep in contact with the candidate during the interview process to ensure that they know they haven’t been forgotten and that you’re are trying to move the process forward. Though it may take a little more time and effort to communicate, this can have a positive impact on job candidates’ satisfaction, which can ultimately lead to better performance on the job, as 15% of candidates who have a positive hiring experience put more effort into a job.
  1. Get back to old tech. It seems so much easier to drop a quick email to a candidate, but more than ¾ of candidates would rather hear good news via phone, so take the two minutes it would take to write an email and pick up the phone and call them. Better yet, if the candidate is the one you want and the process is dragging a bit, get the hiring manager to make the call. Ask your hiring manager—if they were in the candidate’s shoes, who would they rather hear from- the recruiter or future manager?

If you’re losing your best candidates after the interview, it’s time to give your candidate experience a facelift.