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3 Candidate Conversion Killers

about 1 year ago by Neil Pickstone


Do you have lots of visitors but not a great deal of candidate applications? 

In other words, are you having trouble converting candidates? It’s a condition that affects many recruitment sites. But don’t worry - it can be fixed.

There are lots of reasons for people being hesitant to register after they visit your website - you might not be the right company, you might not have any jobs at the moment but, in many cases, you'll have both but still the candidate won't register.

We've been investigating the reasons this might happen and can now highlight our top three reasons why candidates don't apply. 


1. Weak job descriptions

Job descriptions are incredibly important. It’s your opportunity to sell the job, create desire and entice candidates to apply. In order to write good job descriptions, try to create enough detail so that a prospective candidate feels like they already belong. Think about the reasons a candidate may want to change jobs - whether better conditions, feeling appreciated and a great working environment.

Here’s a job taken recently from Indeed. Would you want this job - even if you were a PHP developer? 

I don't need to tell you that this is the least enticing job advertisement you are likely to see. Details such as where will I work, how many hours, what are the benefits, is it a great place to work, what's my future and what is the company like are all missing.

Think: if I wanted a job, what would entice me? It's only going to get more difficult to find candidates so now is the time to start thinking more cleverly.


 2. Your website is badly designed

There are two main issues around website design that could be turning people away: firstly, you may be making it difficult for candidates to find the job that they’re looking for and secondly, you may be arranging your jobs in such a way that discourages people from registering.

Here are some common problems that recruitment websites have:

  • Your homepage doesn’t link prominently to your jobs or even contain a job search
  • When a potential candidate does a search it's not easy to find or navigate the jobs available
  • Some of your jobs are buried deep beneath disciplines.

Elastic search can help but if you don't configure the disciplines in the way that the candidates want then it is likely to fail.

3. Establishing trust 

The web is not like a physical office where candidates can walk through a door, establish that you exist and know that they have somewhere to come back to. On the web you have to establish trust. 

Trust can be established by proving that: 

  • You been in business a long time. Even if you are a new company, there's always a background story, i.e. a reason to trust you and to prove you'll be there for them
  • Use your “About Us” page to present actual details about the company, with a clear value proposition. Use of images really helps to show your offices and your involvement with the industry 
  • Show your team. Biographies and pictures go a long way to establish trust in the people who will represent them
  • Provide testimonials from both clients and candidates to link people back to real contact details where they can validate facts. Most candidates won't contact anyone but it does establish trust
  • Add press coverage or social media coverage of the company - awards can really help here
  • Make sure that there are names, phone numbers and emails on the website of the main contacts, not just the consultants
  • Explain how you will keep their details safe. With GDPR soon to become law, it's essential people know the lengths you go to protect their data
  • Are you a candidate first company? Show them how and what you do - provide a candidate charter
  • How do you look after your staff? Don't forget - how you care for your staff will be reflected in how they feel about you. 



This post isn't about getting more traffic, it’s about converting the traffic you receive. Make it easier for the candidate to apply than to leave by making the end result sound like an appealing, not-to-be-missed opportunity. 

Get in touch to find out how we can help.   




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