In 2022, messaging has become a communication mode essential for a positive candidate experience. As the number one use of smartphones in the USA, messaging has quickly become the preferred way to communicate for many. Text recruiting is a fast and efficient way to connect with potential employees. But, it is only appropriate if done correctly.
Best Practices for Effective Text Recruiting
Texting can lead to embarrassing, costly, and time-consuming mistakes when done wrong. It can even tarnish your company’s employer brand. Here are our best practices for text recruiting:
1. Create a Policy for Text Recruiting Etiquette
To eliminate the risk of tarnishing your company reputation, it’s important to develop a policy for text recruiting etiquette. This policy should include the following information…
- What type of texts are appropriate
- When it is appropriate to reach out to candidates via text
- What types of communication are not allowed (i.e., spamming and harassment).
When training your recruiters, make sure they are familiar with the policy and understand how to follow it.
2. Respect Candidate Boundaries
It is not just employees who appreciate boundaries; potential candidates do too. For example, sending an unwanted text to a jobseeker can appear invasive, especially if they are only a passive candidate. In addition, if a candidate is not expecting a text from you, they may be annoyed, offended, or put off because you decided to reach out to them that way.
You should always respect the privacy of potential employees by asking for their consent beforehand, so texting should never be the first method of communication used with a candidate.
3. Build a Database for Text Recruiting
Creating a database for text recruiting is one way to ensure that your efforts are efficient. This process is made easy with an Applicant Tracking System (ATS). An ATS allows you to store a candidate’s contact information in a database and document your conversations. You can then easily send text messages (or even automated text messages) to potential candidates without manually entering their information every time.
4. Only Use Texting for Short Messages
Text messages to candidates should be short and sweet. Email is a much better and more professional mode of communication for any message that is longer than a few lines. This means that you should not text candidates anything requiring them to respond with a descriptive answer.
Texts should also never include attachments, personal information, or anything not relevant to the job opening. Examples of appropriate things to text candidates include:
- Inviting candidates to self-schedule a phone call or screening interview
- Confirming an appointment and reminding them of the time, location, or address
- Asking a candidate to email additional documents (e.g., resume, work permit)
- Thanking a candidate after an interview
- Letting candidates know that you have sent them a time-sensitive email
- Making a past candidate aware of a new opportunity
5. Be Mindful of Time Zones
When recruiting via text, it is crucial to be mindful of time zones. For example, if you’re texting a candidate in a different time zone, they may receive your message at an inconvenient time or even when they are asleep. To avoid this, always ask the candidate when they would prefer to receive texts. If needed, you can even create a schedule that works with their time zone and send pre-scheduled text messages to them at those times.
If you are unsure, the rule of thumb is to aim for the mid-to-late morning, or between 8 A.M. and 12 P.M. in their respective time zones. This is when candidates typically prefer to be texted.
6. Use Professional, Friendly Language
Texting with a prospective employee is a great way to personalize your communication. However, it’s still important to use professional language and maintain a certain level of formality when texting a candidate. To achieve this, always make sure to introduce yourself, use the candidate’s name, and be clear about the purpose of your text in a friendly and concise way. Also, avoid using emojis, slang, or excessive abbreviations in your readers.
Text recruiting is a great way to engage candidates, but only when done professionally and respectfully. The above tips will help you ensure that your text recruiting efforts result in the best possible candidate experience.