This is a guest post by Hope Gurion, the chief development officer at CareerBuilder.
Smartphones have become a way of life and are outselling PCs, but adoption of mobile in talent recruitment is not nearly as widespread.
According to a recent iMomentous corporate readiness report, only two percent of Fortune 500 companies offer a “mobile apply” option for their jobs. The vast majority don’t have mobile-optimized career sites.
Having a mobile “dead zone” when it comes to recruiting talent can have serious business repercussions. In a survey by CareerBuilder (my company) of more than 2,000 employers nationwide, nearly 30 percent reported they currently have open positions for which they can’t find qualified candidates, and 23 percent have reported a loss in revenue due to job vacancies.
As the competition for high-skill labor in areas like IT, high-end sales, and health care intensifies, recruiters can’t afford to miss out on candidates who are lost to technology barriers — barriers easily remedied.
Here are five mortal mobile myths that every company should know and address — or else be left behind.
Myth 1: Hardly anyone searches for jobs on mobile devices
Fact: Mobile job search is doubling each year. For national job sites like CareerBuilder, nearly one-third of traffic now comes from mobile. Google’s data shows that searches for “jobs” from mobile devices reached 31 percent in November 2012. For some job search terms like “nurse” and “truck driver,” mobile search is even higher.
Myth 2: No one will apply to jobs from a mobile device
Fact: The volume of mobile applications is increasing daily. According to a 2012 CareerBuilder study on mobile job search behavior, one in five employers who have mobile career sites reported that at least 20 percent of their applications come through mobile devices. Unfortunately, many job seekers who are applying through various venues encounter applications that can be five, 10, or even 15 pages long.
CareerBuilder has data that shows that when a mobile candidate is notified they are about to encounter a non-mobile friendly apply process, 40 percent bail. Since CareerBuilder enhanced the mobile apply process for all of its U.S. clients in 2012, mobile applications increased by 50 percent.
Myth 3: Our career site doesn’t have enough mobile visitors to bother.
Fact: The majority of employers aren’t tracking this. It’s easy to find out, yet many employers don’t even have free Google Analytics set up on their career sites. Nearly 25 percent of Internet traffic is on mobile, so even if you’re average, that’s one-quarter of your career site visitors.
While many companies access their applicant analytics from their applicant tracking system (ATS), rarely do these reporting tools reveal mobile versus desktop visitor data. Furthermore, the pages hosted by the ATS aren’t visited by candidates until a search is conducted. If the career site isn’t mobile-optimized — and 87 percent of them aren’t — candidates won’t persevere. This can be a blind spot for talent acquisition teams.
Myth 4: I’m enabling mobile candidates with ‘Apply with LinkedIn’.
Fact: One-click form-fill options are a must in mobile environments. But while it helps, it’s not the entire solution. Candidates still have to pinch and zoom to find the “Apply with LinkedIn” button.
And frequently, after the initial profile data from LinkedIn has been populated, there are two to 10 additional non-mobile friendly pages for candidates to complete. What’s more, many of these application forms still require users to upload a résumé, which isn’t possible from every mobile device.
Myth 5: Recruits will come back and apply later on their computers.
Fact: People are busy. If you don’t capture their interest in the moment they visit, they’re likely gone forever. Only a fraction of non-mobile career sites offer applicants the ability to email themselves a job description, but it’s virtually standard in mobile career sites.
More companies are investing in mobile-friendly “talent network” sites to redirect candidates and will capture their contact information and interest quickly. Then these “leads” are automatically re-engaged with mobile-friendly job recommendation emails to keep them informed of relevant opportunities. If you have job-alert emails going to candidates, check them out on a mobile device: 42 percent of email is now opened on mobile devices, and 70 percent of people delete emails that don’t render well on mobile.
The “30-minutes-to-complete-an-online-application-at-my-desktop” days are clearly over. Recruiting in a four-screen world demands a candidate-centric and environment-aware strategy.
Hope Gurion is Chief Development Officer at CareerBuilder, where she is in charge of identifying and growing new business ventures for the company. She also manages several service and product lines, including advertising, creative services, social media, SEO and CareerBuilder’s niche sites, including WorkInRetail.com, Sologig.com, CareerRookie.com. Before that, Gurion headed a variety of marketing and business development roles for AOL and Discovery Communications.
Businessman using smartphone via rangizzz/Shutterstock