Ep. 10 – Competitive Career Websites
How to Stand Out in the Modern Job Market with a Competitive Career Website
If you hit the way-back machine to check out some old career pages from the early days of the internet, you’ll see that a lot has changed for career websites, but for some companies, a lot has stayed the same.
When organizations first started migrating their job listings from newspapers to the digital realm, they posted their openings online as a static list of jobs with directions on how to submit a resume. As technology has evolved, most top companies have kept up with the times and now have entire websites dedicated to connecting candidates with their dream jobs. Others, however, are completely stuck in the past when it comes to how they attract talent online.
Many organizations’ career websites or career pages, if they exist at all, live within the company’s applicant tracking system (ATS). While they do provide a static list of jobs, they don’t often allow for a great candidate experience. This limited functionality provided by the ATS only scratches the surface of what a modern career site can do. More than just a list of open positions, the modern career website features SEO-optimized copy, engaging content, and search functionality that makes the job hunt experience as easy as online shopping.
The Competitive Edge
Your company’s career website should be more than a library of job listings. It needs to excite, educate, and entice the right candidates to hit “Apply.” To stand out from the pack, you need a career site that utilizes all the tools in your arsenal:
- Storytelling and Employer Branding: Tell the story of your company in a way that excites and motivates your audience. A career site gives you the freedom to choose how you want to get your message across—whether it’s in the form of videos, blogs, photo galleries, or any other expressive medium.
- Data Collection: When you have a career site of your own, you can see exactly what your visitors are doing when they’re on your site. What content is getting clicks? Are people bouncing off your website or are they sticking around to learn more? What search keywords are leading people to your site? Use this information to optimize and make your site even better over time.
- Control Over Candidate Experience: You have the power to shape the candidate experience through the choices you make on your career website. From site mapping to search functionality, you have the tools to ensure that the candidate experience goes smoothly.
- Destination Pages to Ground Marketing Campaigns: When you promote your company and its career opportunities through an email or social media ad campaign, naturally, you’ll need a place where candidates can go to learn more. A career site is the perfect hub where you can drive that traffic and keep visitors engaged.
- Resources for Candidate Research: Career sites are a top destination for job seekers when they’re in the process of researching and comparing different companies. Through the content you provide, you can put your best foot forward online and positively position your company against the competition. It also provides an alternative outlet to review sites like Glassdoor for employee testimonials to showcase what it’s really like to work for your company.
Must-Have Career Site Features
Large online retailers like Amazon set expectations for how consumers search for and make decisions about their purchases. That same expectation carries over to the candidate experience. That’s why your career site should make use of contemporary trends and technology from the e-commerce industry such as:
- Search Functionality: Great search functionality makes it simple for candidates to filter job opportunities based on keywords, locations, and categories—resulting in better candidates for your company because they are able to make more informed decisions in the search phase.
- Ability to Save and Access Later: Most great online retailers have a “Wishlist” feature that allows people to save products they like and access them again later. Why not allow candidates to do the same?
- Search Engine Optimization: Whether you’re looking for a new pair of slacks or a new career, Google is usually one of the first places you look, so obviously, you’ll want to ensure that your career site is packed with SEO-friendly content. Keep in mind that Google does not pull its “Google for Jobs” (which appears at the top of relevant searches) links from an ATS, so you’ll need to extract that job content via an API to make it appear in a Google-friendly format.
- Remarketing: Have you ever looked for something online and days later, seen an advertisement for that same product pop up on the side of your screen? That’s remarketing, and it allows you to stay top-of-mind even after a candidate has left your site.
Who is Responsible for Creating a Career Site?
One of the biggest decisions that any company makes when they decide to create or revamp their career website is whether or not to keep it in-house: “Is this something we can do with our own marketing and IT teams or should we hire a vendor who specializes in this niche?”
Our objective answer, in the vast majority of cases, is to outsource the creation of your career site to a reliable niched vendor. Whether you use our company, S2E Solutions, or another vendor, the resulting candidate experience will be noticeably better if you get help from someone who specializes in talent marketing rather than consumer marketing.
The candidates you want to recruit are a completely separate audience from your consumers. Just because someone may want to buy your product doesn’t mean they want to work for you. That’s why you need someone who understands the psychology of your ideal candidate and knows how to get them to connect with your employer brand. Otherwise, you risk drawing in the wrong type of candidate or missing out on someone more promising—both of which hurt your company in the long run.
Your career site is the first impression you make to prospective candidates. Just like you wouldn’t show up to a job interview in shorts and a tee-shirt, you can’t afford to start off on the wrong foot with a lackluster career site. That’s where we come in. S2E Solutions can help you design a responsive, stylish website optimized to help you attract and convert top talent. Visit with Stuey today for a career website audit or give our experts a call today and see what S2E Solutions can do for you.