By: Krystal Freeman on January 31st, 2024

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Will Candidate Texting Continue to Be a Recruiting Trend in 2024?

Talent Acquisition | Retained Search | Recruitment outsourcing

Let's face it: people are busy. Our inboxes are flooded, phone calls get screened to avoid distraction, and social media is oversaturated with content. Great recruiters know they must get creative if they want their message to a candidate to stand out.

Recruiters understand the impact they have on a candidate's decision to join a company. As representatives of both themselves and the organization, recruiters recognize the crucial role communication plays in creating a positive impression throughout the recruitment process.

So, how are some recruiters standing out in today's dynamic world?

It's not just social media, job sites, email, or the phone... Recently, texting has become popular to cut through the noise and pique a candidate's interest. In fact, several Reddit posts about the new trend have gone viral.

Now that we have established that yes, recruiters are texting candidates, let's talk about the why. 

Pros Vs. Cons of Texting Candidates

I think we can all agree that texting is such an invaluable tool as a means of communication. There are many reasons why texting has become such a popular tool for communication, not just for personal use but for various business purposes as well. The efficiency, brevity, and flexibility of texting make it a viable option for recruiters to keep candidates engaged and interested in the company and position they represent.

The market today is filled with qualified talent. If a recruiter can "stay top of mind" and keep a candidate engaged, the candidate will more than likely remain interested in the company and position the recruiter is representing. In the recruiting field, we call this candidate engagement. Recruiters may use texting as a last option for a candidate they feel has lost interest or has yet to respond to other means of communication. 

While sending a text message to a candidate has several reasons and benefits, it can also have an adverse effect. For example, on Reddit, recruiter texting has left a "bad taste in the mouth" of candidates. Some considered the communication tactic as invasive, a lack of respect for boundaries, unprofessional, and just "weird." Also, depending on the timing of the text message, it could be considered SPAM or junk mail. Candidates may ignore the text's message or question its legitimacy. 

4 Best Practices When Implementing Candidate Texting in Your Recruiting Outreach

Texting candidates has its benefits, but certain aspects could be improved. However, if your recruiting team is considering adopting this practice, there are a few best practices that you can put in place to ensure that the process is positive and effective. 

  1. Obtain Consent. During the initial conversation with the candidate, confirm if texting is a communication tool, they would be open to using with you. If so, feel free to text, but of course, be sure to have a balance when texting and make it easy for them to opt-out if they no longer want to receive messages. As I mentioned, sometimes a candidate may "ghost" a recruiter after other communication tools have been used and are no longer responsive. In this case, it would be okay to send one or two messages to close out with the candidate.

  2. Timing is Everything. There are two schools of thought when it comes to timing. What time are you sending text messages to candidates? Is it too early in the morning or too late at night? Not only do you want to be mindful of their boundaries, but if you send messages later in the evening, candidates can get a negative impression of the company regarding a work/life balance.

  3. Don't be Desperate. Yes, the market is quite competitive, but how often are you reaching out to your candidates, and how many additional means of communication have you used in addition to texting? Too much reach-out can come across as overly desperate and aggressive. So, in addition to thinking about when you are sending a message, also think about how often you are messaging your candidates. You want to engage with the candidate and keep them interested, not turn them off and leave a negative impression about you as the recruiter and the company represented.

  4. What's Your Message? It's essential to ensure that your messages are personalized and professional. Also, think about the message you are sending and why you are sending it. While texting can be fast and quick, remember the personal touch of a phone call. Sometimes, a conversation over the phone with a recruiter can put a candidate's mind at ease. Ideally, the recruiter established a rapport and a level of trust with the candidate. 

It is important to maintain a balance and be mindful of the way you communicate during the recruitment process, no matter what means of communication you use. The aim is to ensure that the candidate is engaged and has a positive experience. A good experience can significantly influence a candidate's decision regarding their next career move. It is crucial to maintain a balance and be mindful when communicating with candidates during the recruitment process. The ultimate objective is to keep their interest and create a positive experience for them. A positive experience can significantly influence a candidate's decision in choosing their next career move.

Need help getting the attention of great candidates?

Helios HR partners with clients to attract, screen, interview, and onboard top talent with recruitment process outsourcing and retained search services. Discover how we can help you secure the best candidates for your business by reaching out to us and booking an introductory call today!

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