Recruitment Metrics That Were Overlooked and Neglected in 2011

December has arrived and it’s time to evaluate the successes and failures of 2011. KPIs are at the heart of this for most recruiters, but here’s the question: which KPIs did you neglect this year?

The answer: your online recruitment KPIs. Chances are that the figures you’re measuring tell you all about how you did in 2011, but nothing about how you can improve. Here are 3 vital recruitment KPIs that will help you take control of your results in 2012:

Candidate Attraction

Every morning the media greets us with cries of woe: the unemployed are rising in their masses like a scene from Dawn of the Dead. Yet somehow recruiters are still having trouble finding bodies to fill vacancies.

Measure the number of unique registrations for your jobs and aim to increase it. There are a huge range of free channels to help you attract more candidates: job board trials, Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook – but the best candidate attraction tool is the candidate himself.

That talented Java developer you just hired? He’s got friends you’d love to hire too. The trick is to get him to advertise your jobs to his friends. How? Focus on candidate engagement, which we’ll look at a little later in this post.

Candidate Conversion

Of the candidates who viewed your job ads, how many applied? Of those who applied, how many were selected for interview? How many interviewees got hired? Checking these ratios could flag up some significant weaknesses in your recruitment.

For example, if you’re getting a huge volume of applications and still finding very few candidates that are suitable to interview, then you know you’re not reaching the right audience. You need to re-assess where or what you’re advertising.

Get scientific about it. Try changing the fields in your application form to reflect the requirements of the role better. Check your ratio again. If the change made a positive difference, keep it; if it didn’t, try something else.

This process of identifying weaknesses and acting on them means that your results will never be a product of guesswork – you’ll know exactly why you succeeded and, more importantly, you’ll be able to replicate the great results again and again.

Candidate Engagement

We said earlier that candidate engagement could get your candidates advertising your jobs for you, at no cost. It sounds too good to be true, but it’s actually easier to achieve than you think. Just look beyond revenue-based KPIs and get back to basics of managing the candidate experience.

Let’s look to one of the world’s biggest brands for an example: Apple. Apple customers are notorious for promoting Apple products. If you’re having trouble with your PC, you can guarantee that someone in the room will pipe up with, “You should’ve got a Mac”. Why?

I asked our resident Apple fan in the office. His response: they offer a great customer experience. If his iPhone breaks, he goes to the store and they fix it for him right there. If he wants to spend an hour discussing options with the sales staff, they give him all the time he wants even if he’s not buying – they know he’ll be back later.

Apply the same principles to your recruitment. Your candidate has a concern? Take the time to put their mind at ease. Got a candidate you don’t want to hire today? Treat her well and stay in touch, because you might need her tomorrow. Make your candidates feel valued and they’ll sing your praises. Get them singing your praises, and you’ll soon have the attention of their entire professional network.

If they’re so vital then why are these online recruitment KPIs traditionally neglected? Because they’re slippery to quantify. Don’t worry though – in our next post we’ll reveal some quick and easy ways to measure candidate attraction, conversion, and engagement.

Ailsa Partridge

Ailsa is a technical writer and solutions engineer working at Instructure in London.

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