How To Deliver a Great Candidate Experience for Hourly Workers

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In 2020, nearly 75 million people in the U.S.—representing over 55 percent of the total workforce—were paid hourly. Frontline and hourly employees are essential to operations across many industries. But amid growing labor shortages, businesses across the country now find themselves seeking innovative ways to stand out and attract the best workers.

And one of the most effective ways to achieve this is by delivering an engaging candidate experience that is personalized to the needs and preferences of hourly candidates.

In today’s competitive, candidate-driven labor market, delivering a great candidate experience is critical to attracting, engaging, and retaining frontline employees. But in a high-volume hiring environment, how do you create a personal experience at scale? 

Let’s explore talent acquisition best practices in the high-volume hiring landscape and how recruitment technology can help you deliver a candidate experience that appeals to hourly workers.

4 Ways To Craft a Better Candidate Experience

Recruitment automation and talent acquisition (TA) platforms can play a vital role in delivering a personalized, high-touch candidate experience—while also maintaining recruitment efficiency. 

Here are four ways leading organizations are leveraging technology to deliver a great candidate experience for hourly workers:

1. Make the application process fast, simple, and convenient

One way to ensure hourly candidates have a positive experience is to make the application process as fast and easy as possible. This means having a simple, mobile-friendly application that can be completed online in a few minutes—anywhere, any time, and from any device. 

In addition, you should allow candidates to apply via text or chatbots. This will make it easier for them to apply on the go. Using a chat application can ensure you can meet candidates where they are—on their phones—and when they are most likely to respond. 

It’s also important to consider how you can simplify the application process for walk-in candidates. Allowing an applicant to scan a QR code and chat with a bot that guides them through the application process—without needing to have a resume or even fill out a job application—is now a reality in high-volume recruitment.

2. Accelerate hiring with chat-based recruitment tools

Thirty-seven percent of hourly workers say that hiring speed is the most important factor when determining where to work—even more so than pay. That’s why using recruitment automation to speed up the hiring process is an excellent way to improve the hourly candidate experience.

Using an applicant tracking system (ATS) can help automate repetitive tasks, like posting jobs and screening candidates. But sending frontline candidates to your ATS is a fast way to lose them. 

Instead, enhance your ATS by leveraging technology that seamlessly integrates with your ATS to create a more candidate-friendly recruiting process. Now candidates can instantly engage in a conversation over chat, reducing candidate churn and delivering a better candidate experience. And because the technology integrates with your ATS, all your recruitment data is still synced and centrally managed. 

What really matters to your frontline candidates? Find out here.

3. Automate communication for an efficient hiring process

From scheduling interviews to keeping candidates informed on the status of their application, recruiting is a high-touch activity. But it’s challenging for a recruitment team—no matter how large—to quickly and personally respond to all applicants in a high-volume situation. And by the time they do get around to replying, the candidate may be long gone.

Instead, use technology to automate candidate communication. This includes interview scheduling, document collection, responding to candidates’ questions, and sending reminders. This will help keep them informed and reduce the likelihood of becoming frustrated with the process. It also ensures that no candidate falls through the cracks or is accidentally overlooked.

Automating communication can ensure a high-touch candidate experience, so applicants don't just feel like a number in your ATS. You can connect with candidates 24/7 (on their time), eliminating the need to stick to office hours to engage with candidates and get them through the application process at lightning speed.

4. Leverage social platforms where hourly candidates spend time

In addition to rethinking your organization's recruitment technology, it’s also worth considering what external platforms you use to attract potential candidates.

To resonate with hourly and frontline candidates, you need to meet them where they already are, on the channels they are most comfortable with. And that’s precisely why any high-volume hiring strategy should include a social media recruitment element.

While salaried employees may turn to LinkedIn or Indeed when job searching, hourly candidates are apt to turn to social media platforms like Facebook, TikTok, and Instagram. Look to the social media platforms potential candidates are on—and figure out how you can appeal to them there. Chipotle, Shopify, and Target, for example, are just a few of the companies that have experimented with TikTok Resumes—a pilot program that lets job candidates submit video resumes on the social platform. 

Using a recruitment automation solution can help you identify where candidates are coming from, like specific social media platforms. With these insights in hand, you can optimize and double down on efforts in the places that net the best results.  

Hiring Hourly Workers With Speed, Scale, and Success

Employers in all sectors are struggling to hire and retain hourly workers. Today’s candidates have multiple options in front of them—and delivering a fast, seamless, engaging hiring process will help your company stay competitive in the eyes of applicants.

Recruitment automation tools can help you deliver a great hourly candidate experience at scale. Leveraging technology can help you engage with candidates 24/7—when and where they’re most receptive to hearing from you—while also improving key recruitment metrics like time to fill. With the four strategies we’ve outlined above, you’ll be able to give every hourly applicant an exceptional candidate experience, create a more efficient high-volume hiring process, and position your brand as an employer of choice.

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