As in-person networking events, conferences, recruiting events and workshops have been replaced by virtual versions in 2020, companies have been swiftly pivoting to a virtual recruiting program. With summer recruiting in high gear, it’s evident which big law firms, tech companies and everyone in between have quickly innovated during our unique and trying times.
Virtual recruiting programs can be every bit as effective as in-person recruiting programs so long as your firm is fully prepared to tackle the nuances of going virtual. Moreover, group recruiting webinars are an essential top of funnel component of a comprehensive virtual recruiting program. Here are 6 tips to ensure this impactful component is fruitful for your firm.
Be deliberate with who you are targeting to attend, and once candidates RSVP, make a concerted effort to get to know their backgrounds. You can collect the information you’d like about your registrants through custom qualifying questions. These questions should be part of the event registration form, so you know your exact audience before the webinar begins.
Flo Recruit’s webinar feature allows you to customize your registration forms so you know exactly who is attending. From there, cater the webinar to grab the attention of those attendees.
When your firm markets a recruiting webinar on the internet, include a conferencing link— whether it’s Zoom, Webex, Skype, etc— in the event RSVP. This will prevent you from sending the wrong link to the wrong people, forgetting to send the link at all, or making a link typo in your dozens of emails. I have signed up for webinars online and never received a confirmation.
Ensure your email confirmations for webinars go out instantly after the person has signed up. Try to enable the functionality where someone can add your event directly to their calendar from the confirmation email, or better yet, set up your registration process where the invite pops up on their calendar automatically once they submit the registration form.
Attendance drop-off occurs when there is too much burden on the attendee to remember logging the details on their own. You will lose attendee interest if they have to sift through their emails to find out how to log on when the time comes. We all have busy lives and to get the attendance numbers you want, aim to make logging on as easy as a click of a button.
If you are hosting an informational recruiting webinar with the goal to attract candidates to your company, the content of the presenters should be from the lens of the people you are wanting to learn about. For example, what makes your company special and unique, what career opportunities are available at your company vs. to the competition etc. Group virtual chats are a great way to delight your audience and deepen their interest in working for your company.
Consider establishing recruiting success metrics for getting candidates through the recruiting funnel. Identifying milestones along each step including the conversion rate from recruiting webinar attendee count to the attendee filling out a job application is a solid indicator on how well your presenters sold the company to the audience. I also advise companies to make it the overarching goal of group recruiting webinars to sell candidates on your company at a high level and save the scrutinizing of their skills and abilities for the private interviews. I always say “Recruiting people in, not out, during group sessions.”
I like to partner with my company’s marketing departments to craft solid candidate messaging. Because group recruiting webinars are meant to sit at the top of the recruiting funnel and cast a wide net, your presenters can take a relaxed approach to describing how difficult the role is or how challenging it is to work for your company.
Being harsh can cause people to self select out especially if they are female. Many studies have shown women will less likely apply for a job if they feel they don’t meet 100% of the qualifications compared to their gentlemen counterparts who are more likely to apply even if they don’t meet them all. Save that content for a later stage when you start to whittle the funnel down.
Humans are forgetful creatures. There are many reasons why it’s hard for us to remember even the simplest of tasks and priorities. Sending out reminders will increase your attendance rate.
According to an article written by Harvard Business Review, “stress and anxiety can interfere with attention and block the formation of new memories or the retrieval of old ones.” Job hunting and career planning is stressful. Make it easy for your candidates to stay organized. Even if your company sends out email confirmations and calendar invites for webinars at the point they register for your event, it’s pretty easy to miss the event.
Schedule email reminders the day before and day of the event. Instead of using the same exact language in each reminder, partner with your marketing team to capture creative language and hone in on the purpose of the webinar as the webinar time approaches.
If you are hosting a webinar, ensure your speakers and moderators join at least 10 minutes early to test their computer audio, pull up the slide presentations and brief one another on how the time will be best spent. If a recruiting webinar has a bumpy start, it is a poor reflection of your company.
For a lot of candidates, recruiting events serve as the first impression of your company. Psychology Today says, “Positive first impressions lead to social cohesion; negative first impressions lead to biases.” Avoid creating negative impressions by getting organized, preparing for the worst and always having a back up plan.
I cringe watching webinars when presenters are clearly disorganized on who owns which component of the virtual session, are missing important talking points and are constantly talking over one another. To avoid an embarrassing virtual disaster, clearly identify your moderator, content experts and the facilitator of the Q&A session.
Make sure there is a person who is designated to make an intro and guide the other speakers throughout the webinar. Bottom line— make sure someone is always in charge.
When it comes to the Q&A session, identify which speakers will field which topics of questions. You may not be able to predict every single question, but your team will know the general buckets of topics candidates will be curious to learn more about.
For example, leave it to one person to describe the recruiting process, another person to describe the history of the company and the makeup of the leadership team and another person to describe the open positions at great detail. It’s really awkward when the speakers look confused on who should speak up or worse battle one another to get air time.
Most importantly, remember that the candidates will always be a little nervous when they join recruiting webinars. Job searching is a high-stakes activity and the fear of the unknown can be gripping for most of us.
They are excited and eager to learn every little detail about your company because that’s where they want to take their future career. Let your company shine during recruiting webinars and build a credible employer brand with each and every one of them.