Improve your Career Web Page and gain access to more job applicants_Connector Team Recruiting-01.png

Today we firmly believe that to attract the best talent to your company it’s critical that your branding message extend all the way to the Career Page. Nothing tells a candidate more about a company and their brand than how the company communicates with their potential applicants.

Building a talent pipeline

Research today confirms that today’s job seeker and talent is seeking quick interaction with hiring managers and they want a do-it-myself level experience. If your website does not provide ease in the application process and transparency, you may be losing out on connecting with great candidates. The user experience is becoming more important to both hiring managers and candidates…more so than ever before.  The candidate wants a clear path to the hiring manager and conversely the hiring authority wants a system that can track candidates through the process. This is what I call building a talent pipeline.

Take a test drive on your career page – from a user level viewpoint

If you’re wondering why you’re not getting lots of applicants online and unable to create that all important pipeline of candidates starts with a review from the “user level viewpoint”.  

Step one:

Begin by going to your career site and starting out like an applicant. One more thing…make sure you do the review from a mobile device.  Start this process on your own write out notes.  

Step Two:

Engage with a Millennial and or Gen Y candidate and ask them to apply online and then ask them to provide you with their feedback.

As you review your site focus on two key areas. How does your career site portray your brand to the applicant and is there ease and transparency found within the applicant experience?

Branding review checklist

  1. Review the Competition: Would your Careers or Employment site page attract top talent candidates from your competition? How does it compare to your competitor’s sites?

  2. History and Culture: Do you have a page that tells the company story and describe the culture and top reasons to work for the company?

  3. Benefits: Are benefits summarized and highlighted. Note: how do they match up with your competition?

  4. Success Stories | Career Pathing: Does your site relate success stories within the company about current employees.

  5. Community Involvement: What does your page communicate about your company and its interaction with the local communities within your trade areas?

  6. Job posting links: all job postings should be linked back to your page even if you are using an aggregator board like Indeed, Career Builder etc.

Checklist of what the online applicant looks for

  1. Is it easy to apply are there links to get the relevant job information?

  2. Does it tell them clearly what they need and how long the process will take?

  3. Is there an applicant tracking system or some type of pipeline system in place?

  4. Can they apply using their LINKEDIN or Facebook profile and sign in?

  5. Does the candidate get a response and the ability to opt in for more information and updates from the company when a new position of interest is posted?

Getting this type of feedback is critical.  Your goal is to determine if you online application process is easy and mobile friendly.

Case Study

A few month ago, I spoke with a client who was having difficulty in hiring entry level support positions including the critical commission sales role.  They were frustrated that they were not seeing any applications coming in and they rarely got any e-mails from applicants from their website.  Note: This company has a very good website including online transaction capability and multiple stores within their region.  They operate in a highly competitive marketplace.

After a quick review of their website I found the following:

In addition to sending your resume as an attachment to a HR@ address they required a big extra step.  They asked the applicant to print out a PDF document, fill it out send it back.  Sounds easy right? Not so fast.

Candidates today are used to using their smart phone for everything.  Today there are apps to do everything asked on the smart device/phone however, this added step of requiring an applicant to print out a PDF document is a definite turn off for many candidates. Also, the reply e-mail was to a generic HR address which is a complete lack of transparency in the process. I affectionately call this type of system “the resume wilderness”.

As you’ll see from the following – lack of clarity and a less than smooth applicant process will drive applicants crazy. This simply is code for…they’ll stop the process with you and move on to another opportunity.  

The 5 Things Driving Online Applicants the Most Crazy

According to ERE Recruiting Intelligence These are the top five frustrations for candidates in the U.S., according to data from the 2018 Potential park Study (37,000 responses, wide range of industries).

  1. Lack of Clarity in the process - Candidates ranked the lack of clarity in the application process their No. 1 frustration. Fifty-six percent of U.S. candidates experience frustration about not knowing what happens from the moment they send in their application till the moment they get a response. 

  2. How Long the Application Takes - Returning to transparency of the application process, this information should be available before they even apply.

  3. The Application Takes Too Long - Not knowing how long an application will take is more frustrating than the length of the application itself.

  4. Unnecessary Questions Doubting the relevancy of your questions. How much sense does every question make in your application form? Remember: Transparency!

  5. Suddenly Requesting Documents - we’ve seen a wide range of applications from the minimalist “Apply through LinkedIn” to those that require a CV, cover letter, university diplomas, references, and GPA. Only you know what works best for your process. Focus on a smooth candidate experience. And remember to tell the candidate upfront before starting the application process!


Even small to mid-size companies can create a seamless online applicant process.  When you look to create or develop a Career website here are some primary goals to have which will lead to stronger engagement with today’s talent and more hiring leads.

  1. Create a process where the applicant can clearly see the job including a short narrative on the requirements and register online with a few lines and clicks. 

  2. The Hiring Authority should be notified as soon as an applicant applies and that begins the (Pipeline).

  3. Hiring authorities should be coached and trained on the importance of immediately engaging the applicant/talent by e-mail or by phone. Texting is the preferred method of contact by many of today’s best candidates. 


It used to be that only big companies could afford applicant tracking software and great solutions.  Today this is changing and there are literally hundreds of cloud-based applicant tracking systems (ATS).  If you need a large- scale solution you can engage a company like KRONOS.

Important:  In today’s app marketplace there is an application for everything. Even for a smaller or medium size enterprise there are great options with solutions from companies like ADP and ApplicantStack. 

I hope you’ll take the opportunity to test drive your website from a user’s perspective including your website career page. If you don’t have a career page you are literally missing an opportunity to brand your company as a go to employer and make sure you cast the widest net possible.

Hiring today is getting more and more challenging. The U.S. Department of Labor unemployment statistics consistently shows a trend of the economy reaching nearly full employment.  I can tell you from where I sit as a leading Executive Recruiter “today’s candidate is assessing the company as closely as you are looking at their background. They are in the driver’s seat and have many options to choose from.

Candidate Tip – Promote your Brand and get the most out of Social Media_Connector Team Recruiting-01.png

The rapid development of social media technology has had a profound impact on the way business is conducted and how candidates market themselves around the world. As an executive your social efforts are a direct reflection of your personal brand.

If you had any doubt as to the importance of having a robust and complete Social Media profile on LINKEDIN, check out the following updated stats on the site.

There are now 3.2 billion people using social media, with about 1 million new users every day. The average American spends just over two hours on social media per day, and as a whole, the world’s digital community will spend a combined total of more than 1.2 billion years using the internet this year.

While you should be active across sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, as a candidate, it’s imperative to implement a strong marketing strategy via LinkedIn.


LinkedIn reports over 604.4 million members.

  • 56 percent of users visit LinkedIn on a mobile device.

  • LinkedIn makes up more than 50 percent of all social traffic to B2B websites & blogs.

  • About 45 percent of LinkedIn article readers are in senior- level positions

  • (Managers, VPs, Directors, C-level).

  • There are 87 million Millennials on LinkedIn, with 11 million in decision-making positions.

  • More than 20 million companies and more than 14 million open jobs are on LinkedIn.

Source: Hootsuite Digital 2019 Report, Omnicore: LinkedIn by the Numbers: Stats, Demographics & Fun Facts, MRNETWORK Insights, Pew Research Center: Social Media use in 2018

If you have ever had any doubt about the power of LINKEDIN and the ability to get your brand message out there, take the time to update your profile.

The Benefits of Using an Executive Recruiting Professional aka the _Headhunter_ _ Connector Team Recruiting.png

As far as I’m concerned you can call me a recruiter, a talent specialist, a hired gun or just simply Headhunter. Truth be told…I love what I do and the thrill of the search. Finding clients and that hidden talent, aka the purple squirrel or unicorn candidate is the key value a great recruiter brings to the table.   

The services of outside professionals are used by leading edge organizations and companies for all types of skill positions in today’s competitive market. Executive recruiters should be viewed in the same light: as skilled specialists who can identify the best candidates to fill important positions within the company. I tell my clients to think of us as an extension of your company for a short period you are adding a talent acquisition arm to your team.

Here are a few things to consider regarding what a recruiting talent specialist brings to the table.

Recruiters provide strict confidentiality, an extensive network of contacts, objectivity in candidate evaluation, and negotiation experience and expertise. Organizations with a key opening can be vulnerable. Confidentiality can keep competitors from being tipped off to management shake-ups, new product and market initiatives, and can protect against employee and supplier apprehension.

Recruiters value the sensitive information they become aware of during the search process and respect their client’s vulnerability as well as the candidate. 

Recruiters can tap into a global network of contacts. Your critical jobs can be filled faster and with higher quality and more interested prospects. Most often, the best candidates are already employed, and many of them will deal only with a recruiter. They appreciate the worth of third-party representation, confidentiality and professional mediation. Recruiting superior candidates can be a complex process and is best performed by a professional.  A great search firm in their niche’ will have established a high-performing external recruiting talent pipe line. They are strategic, having operated within the space for years and have a long-term talent-supply focus.

Recruiters are cost effective. The benefit of using a recruiter can be weighed against the cost of preparing and executing an advertisement campaign, screening and qualifying candidates, and operating without a needed employee for an extended length of time, compared to the relative insurance of getting the right person for the job.

Recruiters in a full-service firm provide concierge level services to save you time. A full-service firm will schedule everything from telephone/video screen to face to face interviewing.

 Recruiters offer choice. A full-service firm will typically pipeline 3 candidates for you to choose from depending on local market conditions.

 Recruiters are an investment in improving the quality of an organization’s staff. But even beyond that, the risk in not using recruiters can be great. For smaller companies – where one hiring mistake can have disastrous results – using recruiters is sometimes more important that for very large companies. People are a company’s more important assets. They can make or break the fortunes of a business.

Recruiters will provide outstanding relevant salary data from real world searches and interacting within your specific industry. At our firm we believe the first offer is the best offer and a great firm will also align salary expectations. The #1 reason I hear from company internal recruiters calling us about a great candidate they lost is this…most of the time they relate that they had no insight on what the salary expectations were.  They also ignore differences in benefits and perks which can be substantial and vary from company to company.

 Recruiters save you time and help you focus on building your brand and spending time in your business versus sorting through resumes from job boards and or trying to reach that hard to reach busy executive. 

Professional recruiters can deliver the right people for today’s highly competitive business environment. A great recruitment firm has a high acceptance rate saving you time and the plus is getting that position filled quickly which means it will ultimately save you time and money.

Recruiting Firms are highly specialized and all of them operate on different varying models here as some of the differences:

 There are primarily three types of search firms and knowing the difference before you call a firm could save you some time. Knowing the difference can really make your search

Here is a quick checklist:

  1. Retained searchtypically the top 10% of recruiters work on a retained basis and most of this work is done at the Department Director level to C-Level assignments.  For this type of search the company provides a retainer to engage the services of the firm. This allows the firm to dedicate hours and resources and provide specific focused attention.  They become your hiring arm for the term of the engagement. At the executive level a pre-determined estimate or fee is developed based on salary and 1/3 is paid upon start of the project, 1/3 at presentation and interviewing of the executives and 1/3 upon placement.

  2. Contingency Search – It is our belief that contingency search can be used when you are growing rapidly, have an internal recruiting arm and just need a boost of candidates. For example; you have a new sales focus in a new vertical and you need help to keep up with the growth of the department.  There are some highly skilled big firms that will work on a contingency basis, under this method the recruiter works non-exclusively and only is paid upon the hire of a referred candidate. The downside is that recruiting firms that work contingency can be working on multiple projects at one time. 

  3. Modified Retained – Modified Retained is a great way for a small to medium sized company to get the focus they need with some flexibility not offered in the Retained Search model. A small engagement fee is negotiated up front based on the assigned recruiter’s estimate of the project difficulty. The engagement fee is credited to the final fee investment at the conclusion of the search assignment.  This format gives the company the ability to have an outside talent arm looking and is a balanced approach to gaining access to additional talent.  Most Modified Contingency engagement fees are non-refundable. If you suddenly have an internal recruit fall into your lap you are not locked into the front-loaded expense in the Retained search model.  Under this model both parties have what I call skin in the game. The firm accepts a modest deposit and must dedicate the resources to ensure that they complete the assignment and thereby generating the full placement fee.  Top firms will include a time limit to produce 2-3 qualified candidates. The company provides a small deposit which is a commitment to the firm that they are committed to sourcing talent with an outside search.

Important tip - when choosing an Executive Search firm partner the most important decision maker is this” Hire a specialist in your industry!  For example; if your company is in the Automotive industry and you come across a firm that mainly specializes in oil and gas, you should network with that recruiter to find someone that works in your niche’.  We are approached all the time to work in different SIC codes and outside of our office specialty.  Early in my career I did take an assignment or two outside my area of expertise and today I know better.  When approached to do an assignment outside of my expertise I will always refer the prospective client to someone who has the expertise to do the job right.