Reading old blog posts from Seth Godin, I was recently reminded of a 2014 post titled, “Trust and Attention, the Endless Dance.” As we go through the exercise with clients around 2020 planning, I couldn’t help but think about the parallels between consumer marketing and what our clients are working towards when it comes to their recruitment goals, and this exploration of Trust and Attention from five years ago.
There are two interesting concepts highlighted in the post that provide enough framework to set the stage. Godin shares:
“Trust is scarce because it’s not a simple instinct and it’s incredibly fragile, disappearing often in the face of greed, shortcuts or ignorance.”
“Attention is scarce because it doesn’t scale. We can’t do more than one thing at a time, and the number of organizations and ideas that are competing for our attention grows daily.”
In recruiting, if you have a stronger (read: more trusted) employer brand, you’re in great shape. We’ve already seen that you’re able to spend less to drive applications — as we’ve attempted to quantify in an earlier blog post. But there are many points in your recruitment process where your employer brand is at risk: your candidate experience, interaction with your recruitment technology, and likely most important — the candidate’s experience with your recruitment team. At many points during the hiring process, companies have the opportunity to strengthen this trust between your candidates and your employer brand.
The scarcity of attention presents another challenge, and clients are increasingly looking for additional avenues to get in front of candidates to drive brand awareness or find the lowest cost per application. It’s no wonder we’ve seen an increase in the cost per application across sources. We’d wager that the companies with the strongest employer brands are the ones that don’t need to overly compete for attention — job postings, PPC ads, etc.
So what does this all mean? For one, if you’re not focusing on the impact of your candidate experience throughout the recruiting processes, you run the risk of negatively impacting the trust your candidates have in your brand. You may not see the effects immediately, but as Godin points out, it’s incredibly fragile. When you neglect candidates during the recruitment process, it takes a lot of effort to rebuild. (Rise in candidate ghosting? Could there be a connection?)
And if nothing else it certainly reinforces the value employers should place on candidates you’ve already attracted — like the ones you already have in your ATS that haven’t been hired.