The way consumers interact with companies and brands is changing. As technologies evolve, we are seeing new possibilities to reach both customers and prospects. This is true for the recruiting side as well.
More and more we’re seeing companies focus less on traditional candidate funnels, and putting more effort into creative initiatives to get applicants into their pipelines. The most prominent features talent acquisition teams across industries are turning to are SMS messaging and text to apply.
Email vs. SMS
When looking at data comparing emails and text messages in the hiring process, there are a few interesting findings.
The first is that emails had an average open rate of 19.33% with a click-through rate of 1.81%. While those are not ideal numbers, here are a few things to note that could improve your averages:
- Subject lines with 61-70 characters see the highest read rate
- 69% of mobile users delete emails that aren’t optimized
- The average office worker receives 121 emails per day
Text messages, on the other hand, have an average open rate of 98% with a click-through rate of 17%. Those figures might seem unrealistic at first, but considering your own habits with your cell phone. Do you typically delete messages before reading them, especially texts regarding work? I’d assume the answer is no.
While many of us have never experienced a mobile-driven application process, it’s quickly becoming the norm. Over 45% of job seekers search for jobs daily on their mobile devices, and over 73% prefer receiving job opportunities via text message.
When SMS becomes your primary form of communication, it should go hand-in-hand with an increase in your interactions with candidates. Fountain’s Head of Global Customer Success, Nico Roberts, argues that recruiters need to have at least 5 candidate touchpoints within the first 48 hours in order to keep them fully engaged through the hiring process. Considering emails have a less than 20% open rate, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to fully receive the attention of candidates unless you are communicating with them via text.
Let’s be clear, you should still be emailing your candidates. Email adds a touch of formality to the interview process, but the data points to SMS being more effective as your primary form of communication when interacting with candidates.