Our modern world is full of interruptions. Email, messages, Slack, social media, “in person” colleagues, and even that old-fashioned phone are all vying for our attention.
It’s hard to concentrate. Work needs to be done, but we’re pulled in many different directions. No wonder so many people have taken to listening to music in an attempt to find solitude in the open plan office.
Is it possible that your potential candidate’s day is the same?
Have you ever wondered if you deserve their time? I mean, they’re probably not thinking about changing jobs in the midst of all that noise, so would you answer you? Does your email deserve their attention? Does your call?
If you want to level up your response rates, you need to prove that you’re worth talking to. Use the nine points below to craft a better outreach message and increase your chance of a reply.
- Did you use their name?
It never ceases to amaze me how people will write katrina@ into the email To: box and then start their email with just ‘Hi’ or, worse, ‘Hey,’ and expect me to read it feeling anything other than disdain. Okay, maybe disdain is strong, but my name is only seven more characters to add.
For a great start, use your candidate’s name, as you would in person or on the phone, and spell it correctly. (And beware spellcheck making it incorrect!)
- It’s not about you!
Truly it’s not. It’s not about your company either or the urgency of your job opportunity. Candidates don’t care; they just want to know why you’re interrupting their busy day and what’s in it for them! So quickly let them know why chatting to you could be great for their career.
- If you called, did you gain their trust?
This may be for the third-party recruiters more so; I do understand that revealing the name of your client may expose you to a small amount of risk, but by not doing so, you’re creating a lack of trust. It’s the number one complaint I hear from my non-recruitment friends, second only to number 5 below.
- Did you sign off your email right?
Okay, I may be showing my age here, but emails that don’t include a full email signature with contact details make me suspicious; what are they hiding?
Be sure to include:
- Your name
- Your job title
- Your company (hyperlinked logo)
- Your cell | your website | your social links
- Have you done your homework?
This is the big one and the easiest way to get a reply!
It’s 2017 and half of the world is on the Internet. Finding people is easy and finding something to say that shows you’ve looked at their profile (and hopefully beyond) is easy too!
Get it wrong and you’ll end up here… #recruiterfail
— Amybeth Quinn (@researchgoddess) April 24, 2017
Get it right and you’ll be a hero:
Holy smokes. A Google recruiter sent me an email using the skills listed on my LinkedIn Profile.
It is *gold*. pic.twitter.com/1zGkDgRwku
— Paul Fenwick (@pjf) May 11, 2016
- Do you look like someone worth talking to?
How often have you run a quick search on someone before you’ve called back or answered the email? I do it all the time and I’m far from alone, so how do you fair under the scrutiny of Google? Would you be rushing to reply or running a mile to get back in touch?
Check out my previous post, Essential Recruiting Hacks for Keeping A Candidate’s Attention, for tips to ensure you come up well under scrutiny!
- Does your company scrub up too?
Regularly I see complaints on LinkedIn that yet another person has not attended an interview due to a review on Glassdoor, Indeed, or more. And maybe in your opinion that is short sighted of them, but the reality is that review sites do impact on people’s thinking.
In fact, if your company has consistent cons running through the reviews, you have the opportunity to make changes that will improve productivity and the bottom line, so ignore them at your peril.
- What time did you send your email?
Do you use your phone as your alarm clock? Do you check your emails before you go to work or even before you get out of bed?
Try scheduling your email to arrive around 6.30am; candidates will be more likely to see it, and if you’ve followed the aforementioned steps, they’ll be thinking about your email during their commute and far more likely to reply!
- Did you follow up?
I have this amazing habit of putting a red flag on emails that need my attention and then forgetting about them as they become buried in my inbox. Do you do similar? Follow up, always. It may take 3 or 4 goes to get this person’s attention. But don’t be rude…no response is a response.
Recruiter spam is a massive issue in 2017, and if your are in recruitment or talent acquisition and would like to help reduce it, join Allison Kruse’s #FightSpam group on Facebook.