8 Key Features to look for in a Career Portal Solution
July 13, 2017 by aatir-rauf
An end-to-end Career Portal Solution ensures that you get each cent of your investment’s worth by automating multiple aspects of the recruitment process. However, since these solutions are expensive with even higher switching costs, it is important to analyze their utility.
If you have decided on adopting the software or are exploring the possibility, here are 8 features to keep in mind when considering a Career Portal Solution to ensure you derive maximum value out of it.
1. Ability to Adapt to your Recruitment Cycle
Your organization is unique and how you hire can not only differ from other organizations but might even vary internally from one department or geography to another. Your requirements can drastically change depending on the scale of your organization, your target industry and the career level you hire for.
For example, you might have a simple recruitment cycle for entry level positions including phone screening, assessment, interview and subsequent hire whereas for managerial positions, the process might involve several more stages. Thus, it’s important that your Applicant Tracking System (ATS) provider has the ability to mimic and adapt to multiple recruitment workflows. However, your system must offer at least these features to streamline the hiring process:
-Easy development of Job Requisition & Approval
-Multiple means of Talent Sourcing
-Candidate Screening & Processing
-Tools for Management & Monitoring
2. Engaging Tools for Employer Branding
When posting job ads to a community of fresh talent, it is important to be mindful of the organization’s brand image being portrayed. Since candidates tend to be far-sighted regarding their career, they focus more on the organization than the job itself. Therefore, your portal should offer a window into your work culture rather than plainly listing down all vacancies.
Coming across as agile, growth-focused and employee-centered through your portal can make a huge impact on the kind of talent you attract. Therefore, a lot of value can be added to a solution that focuses on correct branding by fulfilling at least these aspects. To learn more about employer branding, read our article on the do’s and don’ts of employer branding.
The diversity of Executions: Validate if your provider offers a host of templates to choose from whilst also offering a fully tailor-made solution.
Brand Conformity: Your career portal should look like an extension of your website. You do not want a job-seeker to think that they’ve been routed to another website after hitting the ‘Careers’ tab. This helps build your organization’s credibility in the eyes of the job-seeker. Check out how we’ve breathed Rotana’s work culture into their careers site here.
Multi-Lingual Capabilities: If your organization operates in or sources talent from a region where English is a second language, your portal should allow an easy switch between languages of choice to keep hurdles out of the application and recruitment process.
3. Features to provide a winning Applicant Experience
Here’s the reality: Applicants don’t like filling long forms. Therefore it’s important to verify the variety of options the software provides to capture applicant information with minimal friction. Structured information is also crucial to allow for in-depth search and filtration later on. Here are a few features that will be key in achieving this ease-of-use and structured data collection during recruitment.
CV Creation Options: This is the first step applicants will come across and so it must be accommodating for them to move forward. Your solution should offer multiple means of CV posting such as direct upload, import from popular job sites and CV building within the portal.
Intuitive Job Search: Once CV creation is out of the way, the solution should enable applicants to search for jobs using intuitive filters based on keywords, job descriptions, location and job roles.
This will provide triple benefit by easing the application process, ensuring a wider talent pool and preventing irrelevant CVs from piling in thereby saving time and effort for the recruiter.
Application Flow: Profile creation on career portals is a time-consuming task. Therefore, your chosen solution must reward job-seekers with complete profiles through a ‘one-click’ job application facility. This feature should promptly submit their profile for selected jobs without additional processes unless the applicant opts to make changes prior to submission.
4. Features to Streamline & Automate HR processes
Helping organizations achieve seamless HR processes runs at the very core of an ATS. Therefore, the system should ease multiple sore points faced by HR managers to fully deliver on its purpose. Here are some very critical areas your system should take care of on its own.
Applicant Tracking: The system should allow a quick snapshot view of the number of candidates that lie at a particular stage in the hiring funnel. Similarly, the recruiter must be able to drill-down to any stage to scan through all candidates present there. This streamlines the whole process by providing real-time feedback on talent profiles and identifying bottlenecks in the process.
Communication Templates: Promptly reaching out to applicants is paramount to keeping them actively engaged with their applications until you make your final decision. Your solution should tend to this requirement through standardized templates on statuses like:
-Having the ability to share these mass emails without switching to an email provider can save a lot of the recruiters’ time.
5. Hassle-Free Interview Scheduling
The platform should support easy scheduling of interviews where applicants and interviewers can agree on a mutually suitable interview time without the need of manual setup via call/email coordination. This will significantly save recruiters’ time and will reduce no-shows through automated calendar reminders for both parties.
6. Smart ways to capture and identify Relevant Talent
No matter how specific and well placed your job ads are, there is a high chance you’ll end up with numerous irrelevant CVs. Therefore, having a solution with a strong filtration system can save a lot of time for recruiters allowing them to focus on good candidates who can quickly be furthered through the hiring cycle. Here are some features that can come in handy with securing more relevant talent profiles.
Auto-screening: Applicants need to be filtered out based on various criteria before shortlisting. You need to ensure that your system automatically does this for you by filtering out irrelevant candidates based on criteria set by the recruiter. This can be achieved by adding these profiles to a separate folder that does not clutter the main talent pool.
Powerful CV Search: Being able to sift through CVs based on candidate’s previous job experience, job role, industry and company profile are all very important features that your system should provide. Additionally, having the option to go into advanced searches like ‘Keyword Search’ can be critical to finding relevant talent when databases grow large.
Questionnaires/Tests: Psychometric tests are growing increasingly popular in organizations as a necessary component of hiring. A good score on these tests ensures that the candidate is a good fit in the organization’s work culture and has the necessary skills to excel in the role.
Having the option to create customizable questionnaires can be a huge plus when you have thousands of CVs to sift through and very few interactive methods to judge the candidate’s personality before the interview.
7. Ability to hook into a diverse set of Candidate Sources
Recruiters commonly use multiple means to source good candidates when filling a job vacancy. Your solution should give your recruitment team the ability to centralize all their recruitment efforts into one consolidated pool of talent while giving them powerful tools and insights to gauge which source of candidates is working best for your organization.
Here are a few tasks that your solution must facilitate in order to serve this purpose:
Internal Hiring: Posting vacancies and allowing lateral movement of your best employees.
Social Media: Sharing jobs on social media handles. This can help in increasing traffic towards your Social Media page, starting conversations, building engagement with job-seekers and always keeping you connected.
Job Sites: Minimizing effort and maximizing reach by publishing open vacancies from the portal to the job boards you work with.
Careers Portal: Publishing unlimited jobs on your own branded career portal to attract the best candidates.
Partner Sites: Expanding reach by publishing vacancies from your career site with the click of a button.
Employee Referrals: Increasing retention rates, engagement & performance by enabling employee referrals.
8. Features to Measure & Improve HR Processes
To accurately gauge whether the Career Portal Solution added value to your organization, it is important to have means of measuring its ROI in quantifiable metrics. Therefore, your chosen platform should provide succinct reports that allow you to measure:
-The number, diversity, and quality of candidates reaching each stage of recruitment
-The sources that helped your organization reach them
-The activities of the recruitment team
-A breakdown of the performance of Recruitment Agencies that were onboard with you
These executive reports will play a central role in your decision to change or continue with the chosen platform and empirically see the benefits or losses made.
Bonus Tip: Non-functional Considerations
Great SEO Compliance
When job-seekers search for career opportunities in your industry, company or vacant job roles, being present within the first few search results can be the difference between you capturing or losing great talent.
Validate that your chosen solution offers SEO compliance to:
-Boost visibility on google search results
-Help you enjoy strong online presence
-Make you the top-of-mind employer whenever a potential candidate searches for a job that you are offering.
Ensure that your provider offers responsive and reliable customer support that can solve queries coming from beginners as well as those fluent in the system’s use.
The team should be able to provide:
-Consultation over challenges that you may face
-Thorough guidance over the product’s range in configuration and scaling
Since more and more people are beginning to rely on smartphones to do their work, your portal should run seamlessly on mobile screens.
LinkedIn reports quote that 50% of new applicants apply through mobile devices.
Mobile apps allow candidates to respond to your queries at any time and vice versa, which speeds up the whole hiring process. A solution that doesn’t account for mobile technology will miss out on tapping the wide talent pool that has moved beyond the desktop.
With so many Career Portal Solutions available in the market, you have the luxury of choosing the most suitable recruitment partner from a wide variety of competent systems. However, you are more likely to reach a terrific ROI yielding solution that fits your needs like a glove if you develop a clear checklist of requirements before you begin your search. There is a lot that an ATS can offer and a lot that you can demand from it so ensure that there is an overlap between the two when choosing your ATS provider.
Here’s a checklist to help summarize the takeaways:
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