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.
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.
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.
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.
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.