Text messages work for marketing, and they can work in your recruitment strategy, too.
- SMS texting has been used in marketing for many years and its use is being expanded to recruitment efforts.
- It can help you get people in seats faster, as well as pre-screen potential candidates.
- When using SMS for recruitment purposes, it is important to set up policies for everyone to follow.
For recruiters and HR professionals, acquiring top talents and hiring the perfect fit are their ultimate goals. So, it’s important to leverage the various platforms and channels where they can engage with potential hires.
When it comes to recruitment, the power of an SMS blast should never be taken for granted. All mobile devices are equipped with SMS. Whether that’s a smartphone or a GSM phone, people always keep their mobile phones within arm’s reach. In fact, a 2016 study revealed that the average user touches their times a total of 2,617 times a day, and 98% of text messages are read within just three minutes.
If you’re not leveraging SMS for your recruitment and hiring strategy, then you’re missing out on a lot. Worse, you could be wasting your precious time on resources or tactics that don’t help you acquire top talent.
Here are three reasons you should use an SMS blast for your recruitment strategy.
1. More people have mobile phones than steady internet connections.
While it may seem like everyone you know is glued to a smartphone at all times, the reality is that less than 55% of the global population is connected to the internet. Commenting on the Filipino population specifically, engageSPARK CEO Ravi Agarwal said 15 to 20% of online users are only connected to the internet intermittently, so they don’t regularly check their emails or social media messages throughout the day. If you're trying to reach diverse overseas candidates, you're missing out on nearly half of your potential candidates.
On the other hand, Statista reports that nearly 5 billion of the world's 7 billion people currently have access to a mobile phone, with an expected 67% global ownership by 2019. An SMS blast can reach all of these mobile phone users, rather than just the ones who have a steady, constant internet connection.
2. You can fill empty seats quicker.
Because candidates are not always online, they may not be able to see application instructions or updates quickly. As such, your recruitment process becomes lengthier than it should be.
An SMS blast lets you send timely reminders and updates to your candidates so that they can progress in their application quickly. This will help you ensure that candidates don’t miss out on scheduled interviews or exams. You can even inform job seekers of a new opening as soon as it’s posted.
3. You can pre-screen candidates.
One of the best things about using an SMS blast for your recruitment strategy is the ability to instantly pre-screen a candidate. For instance, one of your current employees referred a candidate and gave you their number. That doesn’t automatically mean that the candidate has provided consent for you to call them regarding a possible job.
But, when you send an SMS asking whether they are willing to apply for the specific position, then you’re already pre-screening them. Through that simple text message, you can determine whether the applicant is really interested in the job. No need to waste air time trying to call that candidate. It’s that simple.
An SMS blast is a common and successful marketing strategy, but many recruiters still fail to see its value in today’s digital world. If you want to speed up your recruitment process and acquire top talent in the most cost-effective way possible, then consider SMS recruitment.
Best practices for SMS recruitment
When it comes to using SMS for recruitment, it is important to maintain a policy for using texting as part of your recruitment plan. We all text on a regular basis, and it’s easy to fall into a casual style. ApplicantStack offers tips to consider when creating your policies.
Professionalism is key. Just because it’s a text doesn’t mean you should use incomplete sentences. You want to make sure your spelling and grammar are correct. Don’t use emojis, keep your message specific to the recruitment and don’t include anything personal, even if you get a personal type of response.
Brevity is important. No one wants to read a lot of information via text. You should use email when the message is long. You can utilize texting to alert potential candidates that there’s an email. Text is great for confirmation purposes.
Don't take it for granted that the receiver knows who you are. You should include not only your name but also your company and job title. You should do this every time you send a text. The receiver might not save your information, and without that data, they might not know who you are. This is different from how we typically function with personal texts.
Be mindful of the time. Just because you can send a text at all hours doesn’t mean you should. Don't text outside of typical business hours. The ideal time is from 9 am to noon, Monday through Friday. If you miss the morning window, you can send an afternoon text, but not after the business is closed. The only time when it may be acceptable to text after business hours is if the applicant texts you first and asks for you to respond that you received the text.
- Never make a job offer via text. You also don’t want to give the results of an interview via text, even if it’s good news. If the candidate does not reply to your texts, you should stop using that as a method of communication. If the back and forth becomes too much, you may want to consider moving the conversation to the phone or email. When the text conversation gets long, it can become confusing.