If you ask hiring managers what their number one challenge is when hiring language professionals, increasing the number of job applications would be high up the list right now. But it’s not just quantity, it’s also the quality and calibre of job seeker who respond to your job ads that will ultimately deliver that return on investment recruiters desire. While there are many things you can do to hire the best linguists, we’re going to focus on our top THREE must do’s if organisations want to win the war for talent.
Focus on what you have to offer the candidate
Take a random sample of job descriptions and in most cases you will see a long list of requirements. While you need to highlight the key aspects of your language roles, candidates applying for a job advertised by your company want you to answer one question: ‘What’s in it for me?’ They want to know about benefits, such as flexible working, wellbeing initiatives and opportunities for training and development. And they want to gain a sense of your company’s identity and purpose.
Candidates can find other information on your company website or by doing their own research. So instead of talking about your successes, record profits and awards, start by addressing the job applicant and tell them about your work culture and environment. They’ll also want to know about their manager and team. Two caveats though: 1) be honest and upfront about salary information and 2) avoid the trap of creative job titles – this won’t impress or get you more applications.
Top takeaway: lead with benefits and opportunities (but include salary details!)
Make the application process quick and easy
It takes candidates between 30 and 60 minutes on average to apply for a job ; so in today's market, an overly elaborate application process is going to drive language candidates away. Once you’re happy with your job description, you need to ensure that those applying for a role can do so with minimal effort. The ability to quickly click to apply – on any type of device – will bolster application numbers compared to overly complex processes where individual’s have to fill out multiple forms or jump around websites.
By all means add a few more steps if you absolutely need to, just consider the time implications. But it’s the whole application process that needs to run like clockwork. For example, have you mentioned next steps and timeframes in your job adverts? At the very least, ensure that all applicants receive an automated rejection email, although some feedback would be preferable. Remember, your brand’s reputation is on the line – it only takes a few negative comments on a review site to turn people away.
Top takeaway: candidates want a speedy solution (a ‘one click’ easy apply option is ideal)
Broaden your search and build a more diverse workforce
How else can you increase applications for your language jobs? Firstly, you’ll need to adopt a multi-channel approach, publishing on your website and other social media platforms such as LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook etc. If you’re recruiting for entry level language roles, then be sure to contact universities and careers services who can advertise your jobs in their newsletters and websites.
There are a number of avenues open to you to spread the net more widely and tap into wider talent pools – though targeted jobsites such as Top Language Jobs, will ensure you’re roles are getting in front of the right applicants quickly. Also, don’t forget to communicate your jobs internally and see if friends and family can refer anyone suitable.
Top takeaway: to unearth untapped top language talent, increase the outreach of your jobs
In today’s market, where candidates and language skills are in short supply, organisations must give themselves every chance to stand out from the crowd. A benefit-led, candidate-focused job description will do the initial selling and help create a strong first impression. This must be backed up by a slick application process that allows time poor candidates to submit their CVs quickly. And using relevant social media channels will allow you to get your language jobs in front of a bigger audience.
Increasing the number of quality applicants will greatly reduce the risk of making the wrong hire, saving you time and money.