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10 Tips for Recruiting via Text Messages

Recruiting via text messages is a must! 70% of job seekers want to hear from recruiters via text message. Text messaging enables faster and more convenient recruitment processes not just for candidates, but for recruiters as well.

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Text messages in recruitment: Do candidates want to hear from recruiters via SMS?

Yes, they do! 
Texting is now the preferred communication method for most job applicants. According to Gartner’s research, more than 70% of job seekers say they want to hear from recruiters via text message.

Text messages in recruitment

💡 This is why TalentLyft will soon roll out a brand new feature: Text recruiting directly from the TalentLyft software! 

➡️ Schedule your FREE demo to learn how to supercharge your recruitment process with text messaging through TalentLyft.

Benefits of text recruitment

Text messaging enables faster and more convenient recruitment processes not just for candidates, but for recruiters as well. 

SMS enables faster and more convenient recruiting for both you and your candidates, by keeping candidates engaged with your business and automating parts of the application process.

How to use text messaging in recruitment?

Here are 10 tips to effective recruiting using text messages:

Tip #1: Keep applicants updated on their progress

If you have a lot of applications to go through, your candidates may need to wait a few weeks to find out if they were successful. This is time they will likely spend finding and applying for positions elsewhere. More than half of job seekers will give up if they haven’t heard back within a fortnight.

While you may not be able to avoid the wait, you can use text messaging to keep in touch during this period. Texting an applicant with extra information such as employee benefits is a great way to keep them engaged and excited about the position. According to SHMR’s research, 40% of new hires claim to know little or nothing about their employee benefits when joining a company.

Importance of employee benefits in recruiting

Recruitment text message example:

Hello [candidate’s name], thank you for your interest in joining our business. While we review your application, why not check out some of the perks of working with us: [link]

Tip #2: Send interview reminders

Missed interviews cost you time and money. Scheduling interview reminder texts for the day of the interview can significantly reduce your missed interviews, and can also provide candidates with other useful information at the same time. For example, by including your business address and directions, to help ensure they arrive at the right place on time.

This can be used to facilitate online video interviews as well as in-person. A reminder text containing all the information they need to log into your video interview software can avoid annoying technical issues and set up a time at the start of the call.

Recruitment text message example:

Hello [candidate’s name], I’m looking forward to our video interview on Zoom at 2pm today, the Meeting ID is XXXX.

Tip #3: Communicate with candidates discreetly

Many of your candidates are already working full-time, and will not be able to take calls during normal working hours. Additionally, if they are only able to access the internet via their employer’s network or devices, they may not be able to check their personal emails during the day either.

Text messaging is a much more effective way to reach candidates in these situations, as texts can be easily and discreetly checked and replied to in their breaks at work. Trying to call during their work hours runs the risk of frustrating your candidate, as it can put them in a difficult position with their current employer. After all, you don’t want your own employees to answer recruitment calls at work, so it is safe to assume they are in a similar situation.

Tip #4: Send texts at the right time

You are more likely to get a response to your text if you send it at a time when they can read it and respond straight away. This can be particularly useful for communicating with candidates in other time zones or working unusual hours.

Texting candidates outside of normal working hours may be a good way of ensuring candidates see your text, however, this does not appeal to all job seekers. 14% of job seekers say they would find this unprofessional. Because of this, it is a good idea to ask for their best time to get a text from you and get their permission to text outside normal business hours.

By using automated text scheduling, you can make sure your text arrives at whatever time best suits your candidate without any extra effort on your part. As a result, there is less chance of your texting getting forgotten in their inbox.

Tip #5: Keep it short and simple

Try to keep your recruiting texts short and straight to the point, so that candidates can extract the key information at a glance.

There are plenty of situations where they may have to check your text quickly and respond to it later, for example, if they don’t currently have the information or document you are asking for. Including the key information or request in their first sentence of your text will help them remember to reply later by setting a clear task.

Your business name should always be part of the key information included at the beginning of your text. Your candidate may have applied for several similar positions recently, so it is helpful to include the position they are applying for in your text.

Recruitment text message example:

Hello [candidate’s name], we are reviewing your application for the position of [job role] at [business], please reply to confirm you are still interested in the role.

Tip #6: Make messages personal

Using text messaging as a recruitment tool should not feel any less personal than interacting with candidates in-person or over the phone. Recruitment message templates can save you a huge amount of time when contacting large groups of people, but don’t just send a standard template to every candidate. 

Personalize each message to discuss each person’s skills and the strengths of their application. This helps candidates feel you are taking an interest in them as individuals and shows you actually read their resume and qualifications.

Recruitment text message example:

Hello [candidate’s name], I have reviewed your application and think you will be a great candidate for the role due to your previous position as a network engineer at [business], and would like to arrange an interview at 10 am on Monday. Please reply to this text to confirm or if you have any questions.

Tip #7: Request application information

Texting is one of the fastest ways to get a response from a candidate. This can be very useful if you need to get some last-minute information for an application. By texting candidates with links to your online forms or enabling them to reply using SMS codes, their responses can even be automatically entered into your applicant tracking system and added to their application.

Using text to automate these information requests can save a huge amount of time spent chasing up candidates and manually entering data. Automating repetitive tasks such as data entry is a major trend in recruitment, aiming to grow even more so in 2020.

Recruitment text message example:

Hi [candidate’s name], we have received your initial application and would like to get some more information about your previous experience. Please go to [link] and complete the online form to move your application to the next stage.

Tip #8: Use two-way texting

Two-way texting means candidates can reply to your texts and get a response from a member of your recruitment team. Taking the time to respond directly to candidates’ texts helps keep them engaged and enthusiastic about the position you are offering, and makes it easier for them to query aspects of the application process, or get more information about your business or the job.

Additionally, a direct conversation with a candidate can give you a better impression of their personality and whether they are a fit for your company than simply reviewing their responses to your automated application process.

Tip #9:  Respond quickly

Most people expect a response via text to arrive much faster than by email. If you are offering two-way texting with candidates, aim to always respond within 1 working day, even if it is just to say that you will get back to them later with more information.

It is common for candidates to never hear back from recruiters if they are unsuccessful, so waiting too long to reply could imply that you are not interested, and cause an ideal candidate to accept a position elsewhere in the meantime.

Setting clear expectations for response time is good practice in every aspect of recruitment, and texting is no exception. Include your response times and availability in your first message to a candidate, and set up an automated response with the same information to be sent if a candidate texts out of hours.

Tip #10: Track your responses

A text messaging app makes it easy for you to track all of your texts and responses to candidates. This makes managing a large number of potential candidates easier, as you can see at a glance whether you have replied to every candidate’s message, and which candidates you haven’t heard back from. This also enables you to schedule automatic follow-up messages if you are waiting for a response.

In addition, tracking your responses means you can measure and improve the success rate of your automated workflows, helping you to spot where the timing or content of your messages might be costing you candidates. Regularly reviewing this data will improve your candidate experience in the future.

Text recruiting improves candidate experience

Conclusion: Improve your hiring process with text messaging 

Making the job application process more engaging and convenient will build a candidate's enthusiasm for the position you are offering. 

Text messaging improves the recruitment experience for applicants by enabling you to interact directly with candidates and making recruitment more efficient by automating and scheduling responses to candidates.

Improve your whole HR process with text messaging

Text messaging is beneficial not only for recruiting, but it can also improve your whole HR process.

➡️ Discover 5 Ways to Improve Your HR Process With Texting!

About the author

Alexa Lemzy is the customer support manager and content editor for TextMagic - mass texting service. She writes about mobile and SMS marketing and is passionate about equipping organizations with the necessary insights and technology to support their growth and success. @Alexa_Lemzy.

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