Building Authenticity Through Virtual Recruiting

For any employer that’s in the midst of recruitment, talent acquisition is their number one priority. In today’s recruiting climate that means applying different strategies to create a buzz around your company’s values, being transparent, and prioritizing authenticity.  

Of course, being authentic was much easier when everything was in person. Now that the new normal is through a screen, is it possible to remain genuine through filtered lenses? The answer is, yes! Absolutely.  

And there are many benefits to building an authentic hiring brand. Not only will you appeal to a broader talent pool of quality candidates. You’ll also make yourself stand out and strengthen your talent pipeline.  

Today, a good portion of Americans prefer virtual recruiting practices over in-person interviews. Almost a quarter of Americans say that virtual interviews allow them to feel more relaxed. If this is the new normal, then emphasizing authenticity is an important part of your recruiting plan. This guide will help you showcase your true side and display an honest persona that can transition interested candidates into long-term hires.  

Why Does Authenticity Matter? Key data showing the importance of a company's reputation.

Both employers and job seekers are looking for the right fit. Recent research shows that the number one core value Fortune 500 companies place importance on is integrity. By presenting your company in an authentic way, you’re taking a step towards building trust and respect with your candidates throughout the entire recruiting process.  

To do this, employers need to spend time branding their message and cultivating a genuine culture that attracts truthful and positive employees.  One way of doing this is to build brand advocacy through digital channels, like social media and other similar platforms. Job seekers trust reviews and recommendations from current and former employees.  

Treating all your candidates as if they’re customers is also key to building good rapport. Job seekers will rely on other candidates' experiences to gauge their interest in the company.  

Recent surveys show that 84% of job seekers look at the company’s reputation as a deciding factor in the hiring process. This is why brand messaging is so important. 

Creating an Authentic Experience in a Virtual World 

Virtual platforms and tools present employers with an alternative to traditional face-to-face connections. Before recruiting went digital, virtual interactions had a reputation for being impersonal. Yet, that’s no longer the case. Today, 62% of employees prefer virtual recruiting practices to traditional in-person events.  

Creating an authentic virtual experience that’s positive for both the employer and the candidate involves more than good Wi-Fi. Here’s what you should consider. 

Percentage of companies around the world using AI for HR

Humanize the Process 

There are many benefits to using digital tools and virtual platforms in the recruiting process. They’re easy, effective, and flexible.  

In an effort by employers to maximize their time and the candidates they talk to, many aspects of the recruiting process have become automated. This is to facilitate communication and expand an employer’s search with AI technology. But, it’s important to still remember jobseekers want to know there’s a human behind all of it.  

Once you get one-on-one screen time with your candidate, make sure to be present. Take the time to explain the reasoning behind your questions or assessments. Go over what you expect from them and provide them with transparent information on what they can expect throughout the interview process. 

Additionally, consider your candidate’s time. If you’re reaching out for the first time via email, don’t load it with a ton of information. Keep your messaging short and concise. This will fortify your authenticity and cultivate better communication during the process of recruiting.  

Tools like Symplicity Recruit can aid in this process by helping you personalize messages for each candidate. The idea is to leverage technology to better connect with a broader candidate pool of early-career talent with a personalized approach. 

Limitations of the Virtual World on Authenticity 

Most people agree that virtual practices can’t replace real-life interactions. Rather, they’re an alternative to storytelling and a way for you to solidify employer branding to candidates. That said, there are some limitations to virtual recruiting that can sometimes make it difficult to stay authentic.  

  • Poor Website. Your website is the equivalent of a real-life handshake: you want it to be strong and memorable. When you’re recruiting and hiring through virtual platforms, the first place your future employees will go to gain information is your website. If your website is outdated or lacks specific information about the role, candidates are likely to walk away. In fact, 64% of job seekers agree that a rich careers page is a valuable source during the hiring process. 
    How to make your website more authentic 
    Generate excitement about growth and career development through featured content like blogs and individual stories from real employees.  
  • Underutilizing Technology. Artificial intelligence tools are there to help you streamline the process of recruiting and facilitate communications with potential new employees. When companies don’t utilize these tools and candidates are left wondering where they are in the application process, it negatively impacts the way they perceive the organization and makes them question their authenticity. In a 2019 survey, PwC found that 61% of candidates were “ghosted” after an interview. This significantly affected candidates’ perceptions of the organization and encouraged them to dissuade friends and family from applying to positions there.  
    How to use technology to make your company more authentic 
    Utilize online platforms to maintain transparency with automation. Instead of feeling overwhelmed and “ghosting” candidates, make use of dashboards to provide prospects with updates on their applications. Improving communication builds trust and cultivates an authentic culture in the organization.  

Invest in Quality Content 

Data showing importance of company culture to prospective employees.

Because you’re promoting yourself online and increasing your use of online platforms to extend your reach, it’s important you invest in your content so that it accurately represents your company culture and values. 

If you don’t have a team or department dedicated to content, invest in copywriters, editors, and fact-checkers that can help improve your overall statement. This will increase your online brand visibility and enhance your business’ mission.  

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