Here at Attrax, we’re passionate about working with our clients to create a careers site that delivers an outstanding talent experience. But we know that many companies are unsure of what to expect from their careers site. In fact, they underestimate the benefits. Matt Alder – the producer and host of the Recruiting Future podcast – invited us to speak about how a careers site system can maximise the recruitment marketing benefits of a careers site and minimise their development pain points. Here’s a little taster of what we covered:

Who is Attrax?

We were originally specialists in building recruitment websites for staffing companies. We always had the plan to move into careers site systems, and after some time, we rebuilt our system from the ground up. We are now fully SaaS, cloud-based and powered by the latest AI to deliver a relevant talent experience, personalised employer branding and a strong conversion of candidates into the ATS.

What sort of employers do we work with?

We work with many larger employers in the UK and beyond, in a whole host of different market sectors. Many are names most people will have heard of - Admiral, SNC-Lavalin, Harrods and Vision Express. The key thing that unites them is that there are all very serious about their careers site, and they’re all on the Attrax careers site system.

Why are careers sites so important?

Careers sites are more important than ever, especially in the post-Covid world. Less and less, we’ll see candidates come into the office for an interview, meet their future colleagues and get a feel for the brand. That’s why a careers site is so important - it is your focal point for your employer brand.

Yet, many companies neglect to see their career site in this way. For some time, applicant tracking systems (ATSs) have tried to offer a careers site module, but actually, careers sites can’t be considered an afterthought in this way. Careers sites are a specialist piece of HR tech, not just a creative project.

Why do people still go to a creative agency to build their careers site?

There is no disputing that creative agencies have the creative skills to build a visually appealing careers site, but they don’t have the technical ability. Approaching a careers site in this way, you’ll develop something on an open-source platform that might have some SaaS capability, but it’s unique and bespoke to that company. It’s not surprising that a year or 18 months later, it suddenly goes out of date. That’s why a careers site project is the bane of a talent acquisition professional’s life because they think they have to create them every year or so.

What are the types of recruitment challenges that a careers site can help solve?

Being the focal point of the talent acquisition strategy in the post-Covid world, your careers site is your number one asset. Yet companies still allocate a large budget to PPC and other advertising channels, while failing to use their careers sites as a tool to drive organic traffic. 

Very often, careers sites aren't integrated with the ATS. Often they'll receive the dreaded “login to apply” notification, which asks them to create an account before they can apply to any jobs and this can hike up your abandon application rate. In the instance of one Attrax client, they experienced a 50% boost in applications once they had a nice slick process into the ATS. So, it’s not just a matter of the benefits you gain, but also what are you losing out on if you have a poor careers site.

Generally speaking, recruitment marketers within talent acquisitions teams don’t have control over their careers sites. Either because it’s built using bad tech, or it’s owned as an asset by the domain of marketing who see it as a careers page on the corporate site. In this case, recruitment marketers often have to put in requests if they want anything changed. So another big challenge that a careers site system solves is that it gives recruiters control over their content – whether that’s blogs, videos or jobs – and allows them to update it as though it is a living thing.

What are the elements of a sophisticated careers site?

Firstly, when you’re looking for a careers site system vendor, it’s not only about what they can deliver now but what they offer in the future. When evaluating the features and functionality of a careers site, look for a vendor that is SaaS-based, and remember that you're buying into their technology now, as well as their technological roadmap.

There are two levels here - hygiene factors and innovation. By hygiene factors, we mean very strong organic SEO and a good conversion into the ATS – effectively, a candidate experience that doesn’t look like the ATS at all and is seamless, accessible and built to target a mobile-first audience. These aren’t aspirations, they’re core features of a careers site.

The innovation comes down to algorithms and the use of personalisation and AI to drive the candidate experience. You can learn a lot about your candidates before they’ve even applied for a job by tracking how they got to the careers site, where they came from and what content they've read. You’re then able to customise the candidate experience based on various factors – their location, hard skills, soft skills, or even just how passive or active they are.

Careers sites are the beating heart of your talent acquisition strategy

Reinventing recruitment marketing is a big challenge for talent acquisition. If there’s one thing to take away from our discussion with Matt it’s this - careers sites are a critical element of recruitment marketing, yet they remain underutilised. Many companies don’t have a clear strategic view of where they fit in and what challenges they solve. Listen to the full podcast on careers site systems over on Recruiting Future to learn more.

Are you interested in learning more about how a careers site will give you access to the most valuable candidates? Download our eBook: Part 1 - The value of your careers site - building the business case.