For every outdated process there is obviously a newer, faster, more efficient version that has replaced it (or eventually will). The need to receive and transfer information instantly knows no bounds and is coming to include applying for that next great career move. Traditional, hard copy resumes to online applications, the evolution of digital hiring processes is now extending to mobile phones. However, though the potential is there, the follow through is not yet available.
Recognizing the use of the mobile phone platform as the number one on-the-go informant, savvy companies have begun to launch downloadable apps aimed at job seekers. Complete with company information, open position listings, and options such as sending an e-mail of the job ad through the app, forward-thinking companies such as PepsiCo and Nestle are taking potential hires to the next level.
The only issue? When the interest has peaked and the candidate is ready to apply for the job, they can’t do so through the app. They have to access the job online in order to apply; the reason being that applicant tracking systems are not yet compatible with these customized apps. If there is an exception to this rule, I have yet to see it.
Does this mean organizations should forego creating something similar until technology has caught up with the intent? Not necessarily. Downloadable applications for job applications (apps for apps!) may not be available yet, but mobile recruitment is still a highly useful tool if utilized correctly. To avoid frustration, it should be clear throughout the app that the ability to apply this way is not yet available. Though a motivated candidate will still access proper channels to send in their resume, don’t lose a potential application out of frustration with your app.
As of right now, this tool is clearly about branding your company. Provide as much information and entertainment to the candidate (or consumer) that downloads your app and be sure to include access to company blogs, videos, and postings/pages on various social media sites. This should be a one-stop shop for “all things your company”. That is, with the exception of the actual job application. The capability will be here soon enough and when the time comes, you will be glad you already have something in place to upgrade.
Even if you don’t decide to invest in the creation of a mobile app just yet, make sure, in the very least, that you take the time to view your company website, including the information and careers pages, as well as any job advertisements you have posted, on a mobile phone. This will allow you to see what the potential job seeker is viewing through this platform. Perhaps there are changes that need to me made in order to increase the likelihood someone searching for a position on their phone will apply for your opening.
Mobile apps are an excellent supplement to formalized recruitment processes and websites. If issues still exist on those fronts, launching a new venture may not be the right move. If this is potentially the innovative next step you are looking for, jump on board. Applicants are on their phones. You should be on their phones too.
Traci K. is an HR Professional and freelance writer based in the Midwest, specializing in recruitment and immigration. When she’s not improving unemployment, she keeps busy with her husband and four children.