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Where to find Top Candidates


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This study is based on data from over 20 medium and large organisations in the Middle East and Asia, which have adopted on-line recruitment. We looked at over 1.1 million applicants, studied what application channel they used and compared that to where actual hires originated from.

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Where to find Top Candidates

  1. 1. Where You Can Find The Best Candidates: The Reality A study on 1.1 million job applications resulting in 6193 hires in the Middle East and Asia White Paper
  2. 2. Insight | Where You Can Find the Best Candidiates: The Reality 02 The Study Today, it is a reality that employers are recruiting talent online because after all, that is where 90% of candidates are searching for work. This study was carried out to understand how companies attract online applicants and more importantly, which channels delivered the quality ones who get hired. We studied 20 organisations across the Middle East and Asia that have successfully adopted an online recruitment strategy (see box below) and reviewed 1.1 million applications received in the last 6 months of 2011; we then focused on the 6193 hires that resulted from them to understand which channel they originated from. The jobs advertised varied from drivers and cleaners to mid-level executives and senior management and the employers were spread over a wide range of industries: oil and gas, retail, hospitality, IT, telecommunications, energy, banking, technology, construction, healthcare and education. Employers are recruiting talent online because that is where 90% of candidates go when looking for work. Companies who adopt an online recruitment strategy use the internet as their main recruitment tool. These employers mostly promote their vacancies through job boards, social media and other websites, including their own career site, to drive quality candidate applications to a centralised recruitment system. What’s an online recruitment strategy?
  3. 3. Insight | Where You Can Find the Best Candidiates: The Reality 03 Where Companies Find Applicants One of the most impressive findings in the study was that 45% of all applicants heard about the vacancy through the employer’s corporate career website. In fact, certain large companies get more traffic on their career site than on their own corporate website. This of course, raises the question: how many qualified individuals would still apply if the organisation didn’t have a career site? Application By Source – July-Dec 20110.01% Associations 0.87% Career fair 1.11% Recruitment agency 1.52% Social Media 2.16% Employee referral 3.86% Browsing Online 3.91% Internal application 4.98% Search engines 5.18% Networking & friends 0.08% O thers 0.22% W alk in 0.67% Job alerts 0.71% Newspaper, Radio 45.37%Corpor ate Career Website 29.3% Job boards
  4. 4. Insight | Where You Can Find the Best Candidiates: The Reality 04 It came as no surprise that job boards represented 29% of applications. Although the quality of the candidates was questionable (see p.5), they were systematically being used by corporate recruiters. However, high quality candidates did come through Networking (5%) and Employee Referrals (2%) (see p.5). It was interesting to note that apparently none of these originated from social networks such as Facebook or Linkedin. In fact, social media, despite all its current popularity and hype, produced an unexpectedly low 1.5% of applications. This is likely due to the fact that most of the employers do not yet use this tool consistently to advertise their vacancies. We expect this number to change in coming years since industry figures show that job seekers use social media heavily in their job search. Other channels which yielded poor results amongst modern recruiters were career fairs (<1%) and newspapers (<1%). Their limited reach and low cost efficiency compared to alternative online sources could explain why they produced an inferior number of applications. Social media, despite all its current popularity and hype, produced an unexpectedly low 1. 5% of applications. The employers included in this study all had a corporate career website. These are sites that are dedicated to recruitment, where employers present content that is relevant to candidates, such as the company benefits, employee testimonials, corporate videos, growth opportunities, graduate programs, current and future vacancies, etc. Career sites allow companies to differentiate themselves from competition and target the right candidates. When they have a good application process that is integrated with a recruitment system which also connects to job boards and social media, they also decrease the reliance on recruitment agencies and thus, drive down costs. What is a Corporate Career Website?
  5. 5. Insight | Where You Can Find the Best Candidiates: The Reality 05 What Channels Drive the Most Quality Candidates? Attracting people to work for your company is one thing, attracting the right people is another. To better understand the quality of the various application channels, we looked at the 6193 hires that resulted from the 1.1 million applications and examined where they originally came from. Employer career sites generated almost one quarter of hires (23%). Given that career sites produced a large share of applications, this came as no surprise. Hires By Source - July - December 2011 0.26% Newspaper,Radio 0.34% Jobalerts 0.42% Socialm edia 0.81% Search engines 1.21% Careerfair 1.34% Brow sing online 1.61% W alk in 3.92% Internal Hires 4.59% Job boards 7.14% Networking & friends 23.18% Talent Pool 22.65% CorporateCareer Website Employee referral 15.93% Recruitment agency 8.53% Other 8.07%
  6. 6. Insight | Where You Can Find the Best Candidiates: The Reality 06 What Channels Drive the Most Quality Candidates? What did come as a an unexpected result however was the fact that 23% of hires came from employer talent pools, which are essentially databases of all past applicants (see box below for details). Some organisations in the study hired up to 40% of their employees this way. Although the original source of talent pool hires vary (see Fig 1.3, on p.6), the quality of these candidates is high because they have already been reviewed, rated and sometimes shortlisted through previous application processes. There is virtually no cost involved with sourcing candidates through the talent pool and the time- to-hire is considerably reduced since recruiters do not need to spend any time advertising a vacancy, nor do they need to screen or qualify thousands of applications. Instead, they perform a quick search in the talent pool to identify suitable candidates. Talent pool hiring is very cost-effective and it signicantly reduces time-to-hire. 0.09% of job board applications resulted in a hire. Companies with an online recruitment strategy invariably have a good recruitment system that allows them to collect, screen and qualify all past applications. On average, employers in the study receive 180 applications for each job opening, which means they are often left with a surplus of qualified candidates, which they flag in their system for future hiring needs. Some employers in the study have millions of applicants in their talent pool. It is a very cost-effective recruitment method that significantly reduces time-to-hire What is a Talent Pool?Employee referrals proved to be a very effective recruitment channel. Although they only accounted for 2% of applications, they produced 16% of hires. Several recent US-based studies have shown similar results. Employees are likely to know people who work in the same sector and because they have a good understanding of a company’s culture and business needs, they are more likely to recognise good-fit candidates. Given its relationship-based nature, we were surprised to see that social media was not a more efficient tool when it came to actually hiring talent: while 1.5% of applicants were sourced from social media, only 0.4% of hires were. Job boards were an equally weak performer in terms of efficiency. When we looked at the actual number of hires (241) and applications (262,794) resulting from this source, only 0.09% of job board applications resulted in a hire. Search engines produced the same ratio. Another noteworty result was the performance of recruitment agencies. Most employers in this study used to get 20%-40% of their hires through agencies prior to using an online strategy. As companies have become more web-savvy, the need for agencies has greatly diminished, thus decreasing costs. There are times however when organisations do need them: they produced 6% of hires in this study. When using agencies, employers used reporting technology to identify the ones that delivered the best results.
  7. 7. Insight | Where You Can Find the Best Candidiates: The Reality 07 Talent pools are built over time using a variety of sources. The following chart gives a breakdown of these sources: corporate career websites made up 42% of talent pool hires and the rest was a mix of job boards, other websites, employee referrals, networking and a number of other channels. Source Of Talent Pool Hires - July - December 2011 0.34% Newspaper,Radio 0.07% Jobalert,sms,etc. 0.07% Walkin 0.41% Linkedin,Facebook,Twitter 1.24% Careerfair 2.48% Recruitm entagency 4.01% Search engine (Google, Yahoo, etc) 4.01% Internal Hires 5.18% Browsing News/industry/other websites 7.39% Employee referral 9.47% Netw orking & friends 41.97%Corporate Career Website O ther 1 2.17% Job Boards 11.13%
  8. 8. Insight | Where You Can Find the Best Candidiates: The Reality 08 Conclusions The numbers in this report clearly demonstrates that corporate career sites, talent pools and employee referrals, which yield 62% of hires, produce the highest quality of applicants. They are undoubtedly the most essential tools for any corporate recruiter. Here are some recommendations that we can make based on our analysis Get a career site and send traffic to it Corporate career sites are fundamental for employers who want to recruit online. They produce a huge number of applications and almost a quarter of all hires. However, the numbers don’t tell us everything. Employers in this study direct all vacancy advertisements to their career site because it allows them to collect applications directly into their system. It can also attract more good-fit candidates and provide potential applicants with a better, more personal candidate experience. The employer’s career site is therefore a central hub for all candidates no matter what sourcing channel they originate from. Build a talent pool Talent pools are just as valuable (23% of hires) as a career site. Here are a few imortant componenents that can help build a quality talent pool: • A good recruitment system that allows recruiters find candidates using specific criteria. A database that is difficult to search is of little use. Beware of this, as not all recruitment systems provide specific search capabilities. • A diversified candidate sourcing strategy that includes a career site, referrals, job boards, social media, etc. Promote employee referrals Employees help find 16% of hires, so companies should ensure that all vacancies are effectively communicated internally using appropriate tools. In this study for example, the 20 employers systematically published their vacancies directly from their recruitment system to the company intranet and employees could refer qualified individuals by sending them specific links so that referrals could be tracked. No, job boards are not a waste of time One may conclude that job boards are of little use because they account for only 4% of hires, but this would be a mistake. Job boards are extremely useful for any employer wanting to recruit online. An important part of online recruiting is marketing vacancies in places where the target candidates are looking. These candidates do not necessarily know you exist so they may not visit your website. Well-chosen regional and industry-specific job boards are a great way to provide employers with visibility and qualified job seeker traffic. All sources mentioned in this study can contribute to increasing your career site’s popularity and to build a talent pool, so none should be ignored.
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