How to successfully attract more direct applicants to your company

Sourcing and securing quality employees for your company is key to ensuring that your business will thrive. However, this task is not only arduous, but time-consuming and costly too. A reliable method for cutting back the time taken to hire and the expense, while also boosting the calibre of candidates, is increasing the capability to attract more direct candidates to your company. This won’t happen overnight, and will certainly require strategic planning and a fresh approach, but in the long run, it will strengthen and cement your employer brand.

What are the benefits of directly sourcing candidates?

By attracting applicants directly to your business, you are able to curb the heavy costs that come with working with recruitment agencies. On average, firms spend up to 15-20% of an employee’s salary on fees alone, with this figure jumping to 30% for hard to fill positions. This means one hire with a salary of £50,000 could cost your company a staggering figure between £7,500 and £15,000. Eliminating expensive third-party suppliers means that your firm will be able to invest more resources in other crucial areas such as training and development, or bringing on board even more fantastic employees.

Enhancing your direct sourcing capabilities also puts you in the driving seat when it comes to dealing with your business’ most valuable asset. You will be able to ensure that the employees sourced are a perfect fit with your company’s culture and can also guarantee that they are treated in line with how you want your employer brand to be recognised by applicants. Direct recruitment channels also help a company promote its values on diversity and inclusion authentically, which enables it to appeal to a wider pool of suitable candidates

How to attract more direct applicants – turning theory into reality

A dedicated careers page

If you would like candidates to come to you directly, you need a dedicated, applicant-friendly, careers page. With current job seekers increasingly more active in researching a role before accepting an offer, it is vital that there is a well-designed, and easily accessible page to welcome them. According to Talent Board’s Candidate Experience Research Report, 64% of jobseekers say company career websites are the most valuable research channels. Therefore, it is crucial that information regarding roles is easily accessible. To enhance the applicant’s experience, try implementing rich-media to show what day-to-day life in the office is like, or to demonstrate exciting staff stories.

Utilise social media

As we have written about before, the internet is a powerful tool for increasing the percentage of direct candidates. With the number of internet users worldwide in 2018 over four billion – up 7% year-on-year – and global social media users now more than three billion, it is clear that social media is a crucial avenue that cannot be ignored. Capitalising on this tool will allow you to develop and promote an authentic employer brand to potential employees.  It is also worth checking what incumbent, and former, employees have shared about the company on platforms such as Indeed and Glassdoor. By doing this you can address any negative comments and be honest about what the company is doing to change. A strong Employer Value Proposition (EVP) can often be the deciding factor for top talent.

Employee referral schemes

It is important to harness every channel at your disposal, both online and offline. Implementing an employee referral scheme is a fantastic way to boost direct applicants. On average, staff have 10 times as many connections as a company has social followers, so it is certainly is worth utilising their networks. This, of course, will help slash the costs associated with hiring, but perhaps more importantly, will likely find the most compatible candidates for your company. As your employees are ingrained in the culture, they know what sort of character will thrive in the environment and can provide honest opinions when discussing the role. This type of scheme also helps in futureproofing your workforce, as research shows a referred employee is more likely to remain with a company longer than a member hired through career sites or job boards. This approach is, unsurprisingly, most effective when a workforce already benefits from diversity of thought: if a company is not inclusive, then there is a risk that this approach could amplify a homogenous environment through the practice of ‘recruiting in your own image’.

How an internal talent acquisition team can help drive an increase in direct applications

Utilising these methods under the wing of an internal talent acquisition team is the best, and safest, way to ensure consistency and quality in approach. It is important to have a unified system that will safeguard your vital employer brand and promote an authentic message. To attract more direct candidates, a business must be recognised for being a strong employer, consistently. By putting the recruitment process in external agencies’ hands, you risk mishandling candidates, and damage to your brand, and sales. Through putting in place systems to manage recruitment internally, businesses retain control of brand messaging and build workforces which are conducive to long-term success.

To find out more about how we can help you attract more direct applicants, get in touch today.

April 29, 2019

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