recent article by ERE Media discussed the things that infuriate online applicants the most when going through the job application process. 

Top of the list? Not knowing the length of an application, an overlong application process, and being asked unnecessary questions during a job application. 

Sadly, this is all too common in the hyper-competitive world of recruitment. Despite the fact that the unemployment rate in the UK is at its lowest rate in decades- creating a market that is poor in candidates but with a voracious demand for talent- many employers and large corporations don’t see the benefit of updating their careers sites for a more internet-savvy market.

However, this urgently needs to be addressed. More than 70% of job searches start on Google, and today’s jobseekers can just as easily turn to another company site as yours if they feel that your recruitment process doesn’t meet their needs or engage them enough to keep them interested. Jobseekers have grown up with the instant gratification of the Internet: a slow, clunky application process will not get you the best results.

How can you fix this?

Firstly, by shortening your application process. Vodafone’s old careers site had an eight-minute application process before it was redesigned: today, it takes less than a minute for a candidate to apply for jobs and the conversion- and completion- rates have skyrocketed as a result, with 24% of visitors to the Vodafone site ending up applying for a job.

Take out all unnecessary steps, such as questions that a candidate’s CV or cover letter would address anyway, as they invariably take a long time to fill, and require a candidate to put in even more effort to the job search. You should also take pains to lay out exactly what’s expected from your candidate at the start of the application: nobody likes to be waylaid by a surprise request for a scanned certificate, which could interrupt the process, so it’s better to offer up all the information they need at the start.

The speed of the application process also counts when it comes to ensuring a quick turnaround, and a large part of that is due to the speed of the website. Who’s going to stay on your website if it takes more then three seconds for each page to load? Investing time into speeding your loading time is essential if you want it to work properly- and one of the main ways you can ensure this is by checking that your ATS is integrated properly with your careers site: not only does this ensure faster loading times, but it also means that your jobs are hosted on the same platform as the rest of the careers site, thereby increasing your SEO into the bargain.

With so many candidates in the market- and competition for the best jobs so stiff- what are you waiting for?

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