Expert Interview with Scott Garner About Online Recruiting

online recruiting

It’s getting harder and harder for companies to get attention for, well, anything, even something that people want to hear about. That’s why we took a moment to speak with Scott Garner of ZipRecruiter. When it comes to drawing eyeballs, there’s nobody who needs it more than employers. Scott talked with us about recruiting and getting attention in a complicated digital world.

Tell us a bit about ZipRecruiter. What does the site offer?

Online recruiting

ZipRecruiter is the connection point between employers and job seekers. On the employer side, we enable businesses to post their jobs to over fifty job boards with one click, search our resume database of over three million candidates, and set up online screening interviews.

On the jobseeker side, we have Job Alerts, a free service that allows candidates to save a job search and create email alerts that will notify them when new job openings matching that search become available. They can set those up on our site or through our mobile app.

What are some of the challenges of modern job recruiting?

Two challenges that recruiters face today are reaching good candidates by broadcasting job postings as widely as possible, and then managing the flow of incoming resumes once that job posting is out there. The economy has definitely improved, but the ratio of jobseekers to jobs is still very high, and that’s a challenge that we often hear from recruiters.

Does the presence of so many job boards help or hinder employers?

It’s definitely a net positive. As a recruiter, you really want to reach as many potential candidates as possible, to make sure you find that perfect hire.

That said, managing multiple job postings on multiple job boards can be time-consuming, which is one of the reasons we’ve created a centralized service for posting jobs and managing applicants. Many of our customers are small- to medium-size businesses, with owners who are actively running their companies, and have pressing demands on their time. Helping them through the hiring process as painlessly as possible is one of our key goals.

What are some common mistakes employers make when advertising jobs online?

Without question, the number one mistake is posting poorly written job descriptions. Clearly stating what the job entails and what qualifications are required can really cut down on applications from candidates who just aren’t right for the job. It’s also really important in a job description to give a sense of what your company is all about and what the company culture is, to make sure that applicants understand right away the type of business they are applying to. That cuts down on any misunderstandings down the road, when an employee might wonder why she’s often being asked to work late, for example, when it was never communicated that long hours were part of the company culture.

What role does an employer’s social media presence play in recruiting?

It’s huge. The first thing jobseekers do when considering applying for a company is Google them, and the company website and social media profiles are likely going to be right at the top of the search results. That means having a well-maintained, up-to-date social media presence is important, but employers shouldn’t feel like they need to be on all the social channels.

For smaller companies without the budget or need for a social media manager, where the owner may be directly handling digital marketing, it’s better to pick one social media network and focus on building out that presence. Having a Twitter feed with just a few years-old tweets and no followers, or a Pinterest page with no pins is worse than having no presence. You really want to present the image of a company that’s engaged and real, rather than a company that just has a Facebook page because everyone else does. Jobseekers are canny social media consumers; they know inauthenticity when they see it.

Where do you see recruiting heading in the next ten years?

More and more, it’s going to be online, and I think the proliferation of job boards will continue. I also think the application process will continue to streamline and consolidate, with “Apply With” buttons linked to candidate profiles replacing the multiple account model of platforms like Taleo. It will also be interesting to see how LinkedIn matures as a platform for recruiting, and whether any of the other social media networks make a play for that space.

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