3 Ways to Expand Your Job Applicant Pool

September 6, 2018

people waiting for an interview

The term “war for talent” was coined by McKinsey’s Steven Hankin in 1997 and popularized by a book of the same name in 2001. It refers to the rise of ever fiercer competition to recruit and retain employees when too few workers are available.

The war not only rages on to this day, those in battle are getting more desperate as the unemployment rate sinks to 20-year lows.

Here we have three ways you can expand your reach, grow the applicant pool, and find the right people for your team.

Make Job Posts Compelling

Job posts are the top of the funnel for drawing talent into your orbit. The top of the top of this funnel is the job title. The best way to get the most applicants is to de-specialize job titles in whatever way you can. There are perfectly qualified job seekers out there who may be at a point where they’re still intimidated by certain job titles, even though they have all of the requisite skills.

Once they click, make sure that you not only explain the role and responsibilities, but that you present your company, culture, and growth opportunities as something to be excited about. Too many companies squander this first impression and dramatically reduce their applicant pool as a result.

CHALLENGE: Compose a job ad in a way that even a retiree would be interested in reading all the way through. Use all the storytelling and marketing tools in the shed without misrepresenting the facts. With the amount of job listings online and the number of applications a jobseeker submits, you want every applicant to hope for a call from you above all others.

Reduce Application Friction

If you’re struggling to attract applicants, it may be an issue with the process. Consider using LinkedIn’s 1-Click Apply or Glassdoor’s Easy Apply. If you’re worried that might make it too easy and you’ll suffer more of a deluge than a drought, consider simplifying the application process in whatever way you can to strategically reduce friction.

CHALLENGE: Go through the process of applying for a job at your own company, ideally at a time in the day when you’re at your most tired and ready to leave work. Note to yourself all of the points in your current process that make you want to put away the computer and take a nap. Just note them down.

The next day, when you’re fresh, review your notes. Which of these points of friction could be made easier or eliminated altogether? These are probably the points where applications that have been started are stopping.

Remember, job seekers, especially un- or underemployed job seekers, are likely applying to a lot of jobs. Just because they are unwilling or unmotivated to complete their application for your job doesn’t mean they’re lazy. They might just be overwhelmed. And the job market is so hungry for talent right now that for every tedious application process there are ten others that are making it easy for job seekers.

High-Quality, Low-Cost Benefits

Regardless of the types of jobs a job seeker is searching for, their motivation is to work hard in exchange for an easier life. This is why, in addition to competitive pay, offering competitive benefits is a requirement for hiring. Especially if you’re hiring part-time, seasonal, or freelance employees, offering a benefits package will immediately differentiate you from the vast majority of companies seeking to fill those same roles.

CHALLENGE: Look at competitive offerings at other companies. Do your benefits stand up?

One easy solution is to offer low-cost, high-value benefits like the Alliance Value Plan from Alliance Direct Benefits. The Alliance Value Plan includes access to health, travel and education benefits. The Alliance Value Plan retails for just $10/month and covers employees AND their dependents all for one low price. And the best part – plans can be employer or employee funded. Even if you don’t pay for the benefits, simply offering the option for Employees to buy it can offer you a competitive edge.

  • 24/7/365 access to Teladoc® telemedicine services without a consultation fee. Teladoc is a national network of U.S. board-certified physicians who use electronic health records, telephone consultations and online video consultations to diagnose, recommend treatment and write short-term, non-DEA-controlled prescriptions, when appropriate. 
  • Global Emergency Services, the nation’s largest provider of global emergency medical services 
  • Roadside Assistance, who has been providing emergency dispatch services to over 12 million members since 1956 
  • Full access to the Family Legal Plan provided by the Legal Club of America®. 
  • Identity-Theft Resolution with an experienced fraud specialist through CyberScout. 
  • Alliance Scholarship & Grant Program for employees and their dependents to get access to the Alliance’s generous Scholarship and Grant program

While these benefits are not intended to replace health insurance plans, they are offered to provide members with access to emergency assistance and opportunities to save money.

In Summary

Think like a marketer when you post jobs. Make it easier for job seekers to apply for positions. Show your prospective and current employees that you care about their best interests.

After all, the best way to expand the applicant pool is a healthy, happy workforce that loves working for and with you and is willing to spread the message.
For more information, and to become an Alliance member, visit the Alliance Direct Benefits website today or call us at 1-800-733-2242 (M-F, 7am-5:30pm Central Time). If you are interested in offering your employees benefits as part of a group package, you can find out more about our Value Plan group plans here