If in previous articles we talked about the mistake of sending too much information, too early in the recruitment process, and about trying to sell the job in the first message, in this article I will relate to the last one of the 3 major mistakes that are made when approaching candidates in IT recruitment, namely, the lack of a part that invites to action. It’ is about that CTA (call to action) that’s so necessary to move forward in a recruitment discussion.
What is a CTA? It’s an invitation to a decision, to a behavior, that you want the interlocutor to engage to.
It is essential to understand that any communication, and especially in recruitment, has an intention and purpose that is aimed from the very beginning of it. During the discussion, this intended goals should be pursued and every each time a stage ends the necessary conditions must be provided to move on to the next stage.
What is the intention of communication from the recruiter’s point of view in recruitment? To present the role intended to fill in a sufficiently attractive manner to the right candidates, so that they agree to make the change proposed by the recruiter in their careers. It is important to understand from the very beginning that a project should be proposed to the right candidates. To the extent that they are not suitable, not only from a technical point of view, but also as values and personality, the recruiter should not pursue in the sales process, since neither the candidate nor the company that hires would benefit.
It happens that often in messages that are sent to candidates in IT, the recruiters finish their approach with static verbs (“wait for your answer”, “expect from your side” etc.). Such verbs urge to action the candidates too little to have any effect, and rather leave the situation in a suspension, to the mercy of a possible initiative of the parties involved. I think it is a very common mistake, not only in IT recruitment, but also in sales in general. A much better option for these static verbs may be the movement verbs, which suggest that discussions progress. Instead of “wait,” we can use “proceed,” or “do”, or “take action”, “perform”.
What do we really want in every stage of communication, and especially in the first approach? It is to obtain a positive reaction from the candidates so that communication continues based on their interest or curiosity. How can we most easily get interest and curiosity from them? Through honest, open questions, less statements.
Instead of saying how interesting the project our candidates would be working on is, we’d better ask what’s interesting to them in what we tell them about the project. Instead of saying how special the company we hire for is, we’d do much better to ask the candidates what are the things that are important to them and how they think what we present to them about the hiring company meets their criteria.
The sale is, in the end, an advisory and interrogative process. It aims to serve a need, solve a problem. What we propose or sell must add value in the context and difficulties our client faces. If these things are not fulfilled, then the sale loses its essential purpose, that of serving.
Like the sales process, recruitment must also satisfy something specific for our candidates’ careers plans, help them take the next step in their evolution, help them overcome the fact that in their current jobs they no longer evolve and thus they seek through us to overcome this situation.
How do you best know it serves your candidates’ interests? Asking them as often as possible, what are their criteria by which they would build their decisions and choices, being curious how they appreciate the information we give them about companies that want to hire them. Moreover, when the relationship with our candidates does not advance, they are the ones who can give us the ways we can overcome those stages and move on. And we do this by asking them, “how do you want us to proceed?” , “how would it be good for you to move forward?”, “what do you want to do for the next stage?”
All these questions are meant to engage our candidates in the relationship with us and in the recruitment process. They do this not just in any way, but in an advisory way that is based on an essential principle: ask your candidates and listen to their answers because these answers contain the solution you are looking for in moving forward with them in the recruitment process.
If a statement generates at most listening and filtering on the part of your candidates, the questions generate behaviors, engagement and commitment on their part.
So, “is it of interest to you asking questions that call your candidates to take action?” ?