How To Build A Personal Connection With Job Candidates


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Employers in the United States added 220,000 jobs in June, many more than expected, according to a US Bureau of Labor Statistics report released July 7. Even so, the unemployment rate crept up to 4.4% from a 16-year low of 4.3% the previous month—a positive indication that more people are looking for jobs rather than sitting on the sidelines.

Job seekers are more confident and selective given the competitive talent market, putting them in the driver’s seat. As a result, it’s becoming more challenging for employers to fill open positions, putting pressure on HR teams to develop fresh, marketing-oriented recruitment strategies and use new tools to engage with high-potential candidates.


Today’s applicants have higher expectations than in years past. Not only do they want a better understanding of the potential job, but they also want to familiarize themselves with the employer’s culture. Consumerized tools such as video job descriptions, mobile career apps, and sophisticated social and chat features have become crucial components of a savvy recruiter’s arsenal.

Video job descriptions deliver a direct, personalized connection with job seekers. Hiring managers and team members get to describe the job in their own words, and the viewer gets an immediate feel for the work environment and the team’s interpersonal dynamics. Video also allows candidates to gauge the team’s excitement and enthusiasm.

A recent CEB Recruiting Innovations Survey reported that 47% of organizations that use video job descriptions indicated they had a high degree of success with them, and 60% reported that they consider these descriptions increasingly important to their recruiting efforts.

Nationwide Insurance, for example, has developed creative videos featuring employees to show off its unique culture. Such videos help employers identify promising candidates, cut recruitment costs, and reduce time to hire, according to the 2017 Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends report.

Social recruiting is another cornerstone of today’s job market. LinkedIn reports that more than 95% of recruiters use its site, while employers’ use of Twitter for recruiting soared from 16% in 2010 to 93% in 2015, according to one estimate. Surveys show that a large percentage of employers that use social media to find talented people report a decrease in time-to-hire and n increase in candidate quality.

Another benefit of social media is that it helps people develop relationships that ultimately generate buzz around an employer and its brand. HR organizations now play a greater role in facilitating those connections and that buzz. “In today’s transparent digital world, a company’s employment brand must be both highly visible and highly attractive because candidates now often find the employer, not the reverse,” the Deloitte report states. “To leverage this interest, companies are intensively managing their employment brand, which can ‘pull’ candidates toward them.”

Consumer Marketing Roots

What do video job descriptions and social recruiting have in common? The roots of both tactics are in consumer marketing. They create connections that engage on a personal level. A highly competitive job market puts a premium not only on employers’ HR expertise, but also on their marketing expertise to drive interest in the organization and bring in exceptional talent.

When employers apply a marketing approach, they also build loyalty and set the stage for internal endorsements that sustain and grow their businesses. To learn more about the many ways marketing principles can inspire new thinking about attracting talented people, check out Oracle’s ebook, Finding People: Understanding The Dynamics of the Talent Marketplace.

Danielle Sohn is a senior digital strategist with Oracle Human Capital Management.

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