Spotlight on online recruitment

E-recruitment is about more than finding another avenue to advertise jobs. As technology gets more sophisticated, e-recruitment can help HR professionals manage talent in their organisations.

The UK online recruitment industry is now worth more than 200m – almost double what it was last year – according to the National Online Recruitment Audience Survey (Noras), which is the largest annual study into the market.

So how do you make the most of this fertile recruitment ground? The key thing to remember is that jobseekers find ads on job boards by using search engine technology. This means the words you use are critical to getting your ad appearing on the right computer screens.

Think about the job title – ‘Sales manager, financial services, London’ will be more successful as a searchable job than just ‘sales’.
Make it clear what skills and experience you want. Use as many words as you can to describe those skills, listing the ‘must-have’ qualifications ahead of the ‘desirable’ ones.

“Jobseekers tend to search for jobs by location so it’s essential to include all the location details in your ad to ensure you get a high response,” explains Paul Stephens, website director of the job board TotalJobs.

It is also crucial to include an accurate job description – be clear about specific responsibilities and use bullet points where possible. This will make it easier for qualified candidates to match their skills to your needs.

The global nature of the internet means e-recruitment is a great tool for attracting international jobseekers, although remember to state whether candidates must be residents of the European Union or need a relevant work permit. 

Good candidates will want to find out more about your organisation. Invite them to contact you by e-mail or phone. If you’re posting the ad on a job board, include a link to your corporate careers site if you have one.

Finally, measure the success of your campaign. Almost two in three e-recruiters have no formal systems to monitor their success, according to research by TotalJobs, so you could steal a march on your competitors. The most basic, yet visible, metrics you can calculate are time-to-hire and cost-per-hire.

To work out cost-per-hire, you should include items such as advertising costs, job fairs, agency fees, recruiters’ salaries, time of other staff involved such as line managers, plus any additional costs such as interview expenses or relocation money.

Time-to-hire is measured from the point when a job has been formally approved to when the candidate accepts the job.

Working out these metrics may seem laborious, but it will prove invaluable when it comes to selling the investment to your peers or to your superiors.

Top tips

  • Think like a jobseeker -which job board would you use and why?

  • Refresh your jobs regularly and remove out-of-date or filled jobs as soon as you can

  • Use e-recruitment to build personal relationships with candidates – don’t underesti-mate the value of a person at the end of the phone

  • If your competitors for talent are online, you should be too

  • Be a candidate and try applying for jobs online

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