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5 essential features of a careers site

Written by Jamie McGregor on 24 Jan 17
5 essential features of a careers site
Do you want your careers site to be a valuable hiring tool? To be your best source of candidates? To help you save money on job boards and agency fees? I've got good news: You can quite easily achieve all these things. Here are five must-haves for a market leading careers site that will give you the edge over the competition.

Search First

It goes without saying that people come to your careers site to look for jobs. With that in mind, make sure the job search is front and centre and therefore the first thing a visitor sees. If you need any extra incentive to do this, just think of Google.

Google is a search engineer. What’s the first (and only) thing you see? The search bar. That’s what it’s for. This might sound like a no-brainer but you would be surprised how many careers sites have the tiniest of ‘Current Vacancies’ tabs, hidden away in a random part of the screen. Spending five minutes looking for a way to go what they came to do does not make for an engaging, user-friendly candidate experience.

Customer quality user experience

Spoiler alert: Job hunting is SHOPPING! Candidates are customers. The digital world means we have all the information we want at our fingertips. If we don’t find it - and fast - we move on. Job hunting is no different. We shop around for jobs like we do a pair of trainers. The first time most candidates will engage with your company will be on your careers website. That’s your chance to grab their attention and wow them with videos and profiles and ‘day in the life’ experiences about your amazing culture, your brand, your great team and so on. But don’t make them have to find all that great content - SHOW them. Think like the Amazons and ASOS' of the world with all of the relevant content together and see the difference it will make to your application numbers.

Off the Google Grid - Jobs hidden on the ATS


Depending on which report you read, between 75%-85% of job searches start on a search engine (who are we kidding, I mean Google!). It’s how we do everything else, from shopping to dating, so why should job hunting be any different? The problem with this is most careers sites don’t have their jobs on the careers page but sat on the ATS, which is a completely different site!

ATS’ are notorious for being bad for SEO. This means candidates won’t be finding your jobs organically. They will find them, but through job boards and paid platforms which will cost you money and make you compete for that candidate’s attention with all the other advertisers on that job board i.e. your competition!

Your ATS is important - you couldn’t do your job without it. But it’s a tool for you, the recruiter, not the candidate. Get the jobs from the ATS and onto your careers site where Google and your candidates can see them.

Mobile first

Again, let’s think like a shopper. If you want a new pair a new TV, where do you start? Like most people, you will start online using a mobile device - your mobile or tablet. There are hundreds of sites out there selling TVs so what happens if the site you go to isn’t mobile responsive and is hard to use? Off you go to another site.

Do you know when most people search for jobs these days? On their way to and from work! Certainly not at their desk in the office, but sat on the train or bus, using their mobile device. People expect a seamless online experience across all devices on whichever site they visit. Give it to them or lose them.

Social channels?

Being on social media might sound like another no-brainer but it's not as simple as that. Being on social media is not spewing all of your jobs onto Twitter or LinkedIn. That’s not what people use social media for, that’s what they use job boards for. Social media is where you post great blogs from your employees, videos of a day in the life working for your company, posts about your most recent team social and so on. This lets people engage with your company and your brand and gives them an insight into life working there before they have even applied for a job.

Use social to promote your brand and bring engaged visitors back to your careers site. These are the candidates most likely to apply. Sounds simple doesn’t? Well, it is!

For more information on what Jamie can do to help develop your careers site, contact him on 020 7392 1717.
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