What You Can Do to Improve Your Candidate Engagement

teamworkDo candidates know you? Do they like you? Do you stay in regular contact with your candidates even if they don’t get the job? Do they come to you as a knowledgeable resource when it comes to employment?  If not – congratulations, you are “just like everyone else.”

Finding resumes is easy; finding talent is not. Successful recruiters are doing the things those “like everyone else” do not want to do. They take the time to engage candidates. Employee engagement is a huge focus for companies. They know there isn’t enough talent out there to they want to keep them engaged. To quote Wikipedia:

An engaged employee is one who is fully absorbed by and enthusiastic about their work and so takes positive action to further the organization’s reputation and interests.

When you have “Candidate Engagement,” a candidate will feel so positively about the candidate/recruiter relationship they willingly and enthusiastically refer people to you.

Here are three ways to influence candidate engagement.

The Friend Factor

A good way to judge people is by observing how they treat those who can do them absolutely no good.

— Malcolm Forbes

Lay a foundation of trust when speaking to candidates. Give consistent and constant affirmation that your goal is understanding their job needs and wants and ALWAYS stay in touch. Be a ambivert.

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The Vision Statement

Vision is the art of seeing what is invisible to others.

– Jonathon Swift

All people want to feel needed and important. Help inspire your candidates by reaffirming that you feel strongly about their ability to contribute to a company they could be working for. It’s the old fashioned WIIFM!

Be “That Guy”

Be the only one. Be your own adjective. Be ubiquitous. Be transparent.

– Scott Ginsberg

Don’t be like everyone else. When top talent starts passively looking for new opportunities, be the obvious choice of whom they should call. When candidates Google “jobs” be the first name that pops up! Find your uniqueness and use it to set you apart. (Remember uniqueness does not equal weirdness!)

Finding resumes is easy; finding talent is hard. Harder still can be candidate engagement – but that is why we get paid the big bucks. You never can tell what job order you will get down the road; that is why you must be proactive. Reactive sourcing is painful. By being a “friend,” creating the vision, and having the reputation as the go to recruiter, you will be the a placement hero.

John Zappe is the editor of TLNT.com and a contributing editor of ERE.net. John was a newspaper reporter and editor until his geek gene lead him to launch his first website in 1994. He developed and managed online newspaper employment sites and sold advertising services to recruiters and employers. Before joining ERE Media in 2006, John was a senior consultant and analyst with Advanced Interactive Media and previously was Vice President of Digital Media for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group.

Besides writing for ERE, John consults with staffing firms and employment agencies, providing content and managing their social media programs. He also works with organizations and businesses to assist with audience development and marketing. In his spare time  he can be found hiking in the California mountains or competing in canine agility and obedience competitions.

You can contact him here.

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