Viewpoint: 17 Creative Recruitment Strategies to Attract More Job Applicants – SHRM

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​As I comb through the many recruiting groups on social media, one problem I am reading about more frequently is that the number of applicants to job postings has dropped substantially in the past few months. This quote by one talent acquisition pro says it all:
"It’s been a struggle for us, specifically since the new round of stimulus went out. I’ve been in recruiting/HR for about three years, and never have I seen a such a decrease in applicant flow, and an overwhelming increase in turnover and attrition all at one time. At this point, companies are literally begging people to work."
That’s a big issue that many employers seem to be facing despite reopenings and a swelling number of vaccinations happening every day. It seems a lot of workers are taking stock of their career prospects for a post-COVID-19 world.
So what’s an employer to do if jobs are everywhere but no one is applying?
Boost Your Wages
First, I think it goes without saying that you have to have great wages and great benefits to attract today’s job seeker. In retail, where companies like Amazon and Target have upped wages to $15 an hour, you’ll have to compete with that. My daughter just left a daycare job paying $12 an hour for a job at a country club paying $15 an hour. To her, that’s a huge increase in weekly wages.
One of the retail companies that does a great job at paying workers well (and using it in marketing) is Buc-ee’s. They have "now hiring" signs in stores that spell out exactly what you’ll make per hour:
Fix Your Application Process
Second, you must optimize your application process to make it faster and easier to apply. Still making people log in to apply? Get rid of it! Still requiring a lengthy application? Shorten it! Chances are your application is keeping people from applying. Go back and streamline it.
Job applies are a numbers game. The average rate of careers site visits to number of applies is around 5 percent for mobile candidates, according to Appcast. That means if the company is directing candidates from a job board to their careers site to apply, they are losing 95 percent of the candidates with no way to reach out to them. Just changing this conversion ratio from 5 percent to 10 percent is a 100 percent increase and would double your applicants! 
This is where modern recruiting automation comes in. Jonathan Duarte, founder of GoHire, says his platform has increased the apply conversion rate 500 percent for several clients. "It’s repeatable, and anyone can do it with a low-risk, low-cost solution," he said.
Try These Tips
Beyond technology solutions, there are a number of creative ideas you can implement to drive more applicants:
Sure, it’s tougher than ever to recruit, but it’s even harder for hiring teams that are stuck recruiting with old strategies and technology. Jobs are everywhere today, which means yours must stand out above the rest.
That’s where creative thinking and technology like text messaging and recruiting automation come in, and you don’t have to be a big company to get it. Improving or replacing your recruitment technology will go a long way toward increasing the flow of applicants. Be creative, experiment with new channels and see what works.
Chris Russell is managing director of RecTech Media, whose mission is to inform the modern recruiter. Connect with him on LinkedIn.

Members may download one copy of our sample forms and templates for your personal use within your organization. Please note that all such forms and policies should be reviewed by your legal counsel for compliance with applicable law, and should be modified to suit your organization’s culture, industry, and practices. Neither members nor non-members may reproduce such samples in any other way (e.g., to republish in a book or use for a commercial purpose) without SHRM’s permission. To request permission for specific items, click on the “reuse permissions” button on the page where you find the item.
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