HR Tech Number of the Day: Job application hurdles

Fortune 500 companies are guilty of having overly complex, time-consuming and confusing requirements for job seekers.
By: | September 23, 2021

As the Great Resignation marches on and employers scramble to fill empty jobs, they might be inadvertently erecting barriers in front of eager candidates. In an audit of Fortune 500 organizations’ ability to turn job seekers into applicants, applicant tracking solution provider Jobvite found that nearly 85% of the Fortune 500 lack optimized job application processes.

Advertisement

Jobvite also found that 83% of the Fortune 500 require candidates to register on their career site before they are able to apply to an open role. Likewise, just 11% of these companies are using chatbots on their career sites, and 5% of Fortune 500 career sites still are not optimized for mobile.

What this means for HR leaders

Simply put, HR leaders are missing out on new candidates. “Open positions mean lost revenue and a direct impact to a company’s revenue and profitability. The fastest way to fill those open positions is to convert more candidates to applicants,” says Kerry Gilliam, vice president of marketing at Jobvite. She adds that, on average, only 30% of candidates who start a job application process actually finish it.

To address this challenge, Gilliam says, HR leaders should put themselves in a candidate’s shoes and walk through the application process. “During the application process, [they should] track how many steps are required, how long it takes and what obstacles you may be putting in the way of candidates,” she says. 

See also: AI and hiring bias: Why you need to teach your robots well

Focus on reducing time constraints. For instance, remove any requirements that candidates register with an ID and password before they can apply for a job, allow applicants to pull information from their social profiles or cloud-based resumes, and offer text-to-apply options when feasible. Some employers fail to make hiring information easily accessible from their career site, and Gilliam advises them to clearly link event information on the site, as well as utilize technology like chatbots to offer candidates more assistance. 

These suggestions will also save time for recruiters.

“If you aren’t using career site chatbots, add that capability to save your recruiters time and get faster responses to candidates,” she advises. “We’ve seen companies that have made some of these changes double their number of candidates.” 

Related: How data is driving the exploding internal talent marketplace

Phil Albinus is HR Tech Editor for HRE. He has been covering personal and business technology for 25 years and has served as editor and executive editor for a number of financial services, trading technology and employee benefits titles. He is a graduate of SUNY New Paltz and lives in the Hudson Valley with his audiologist wife and three adult children. He can be reached at palbinus@lrp.com and followed on Twitter @philalbinus.

More from HRE