Campaign tracking: why should you be sure you’re tracking your recruitment marketing campaigns? Isn’t it enough that you know they’re bringing in candidates? Frankly, no, not really.
This may look a lot like a list of metrics, and there’s a good reason for that. The ultimate goal of a recruitment marketing campaign is to attract potential candidates, right? So what better way to check that they’re working than to track things like, you know, applicants? We’ll explain along the way how to use each metric for its intended purpose; if you find ways to use the same numbers for tracking other aspects of your marketing activities, all the better!
#1) Source of Hire
ROI and overhead costs have to remain at the front of your mind when you’re laying out new campaigns and evaluating existing ones. Watching for the channels that are sending the highest number of quality applicants into your funnel is key to keeping those costs under control. By analyzing source of hire, you can gain an understanding of which channels are working best for that particular campaign, shut down the under-performers, and funnel the funding over to the top performers. As of 2016, 72% of all hires came from online sources, so you can see how impactful this metric can be.
Of course, this works for analog channels as well as digital. Referrals, job boards, internal careers listings, and social media platforms are all channels you may be making use of in your marketing campaigns. While the digital ones have built in metrics dashboards (and if they don’t, your automation software should), how do you track the effectiveness of something like employee referrals?
Tracking Tips: There are really two good options here: ATS integration and surveys. Your ATS most likely has a built in feature (whether it’s activated or not is another question) that allows you to track where an applicant entered the system from. Be sure that’s set up if you have it. And if not, a simple 5 or 6 question survey given to new hires that asks them directly where they found out about the opening is your best option.
#2) Current Employee Referral
We know, we just talked about this. It’s an important source of both quality candidates and information on the status of your current employees, so we thought it deserved a bit more detail. Tracking applicants that made their way into the talent pool by way of a friend who already works for your company is a fantastic way to judge how well your employer brand is sitting with current employees.
Think about it: would you recommend a friend apply to work for your company if you hated it?
Having potential candidates seek you out in order to apply for a position is the goal of any recruitment marketing activity. You’re putting your employer brand out there for the world to see, then watching for action. What you may not be watching for, but absolutely should be, is your army of brand ambassadors—in the form of your current employees—to be doing the same thing on your behalf. After all, your current employees are 3X more trustworthy in the eyes of the average job seeker than your official corporate communications.
Tracking Tips: Like we mentioned above, a survey given to new hires is your best bet for accurate information. It’s manual, we know, but you’ll get the best, most honest information if you ask about this directly.
Before you can have happy, engaged employees, you need happy, engaged applicants. Applicant experience is critical that it can impact more than just your hiring: 60% of applicants said that a poor applicant experience made them less likely to use a company's service or products as a consumer. So let's just say that your sales and marketing teams also probably want you to track this metric.
That means you need to be tracking them throughout the funnel to ensure all touchpoints are covered, with personalized care and attention paid to email correspondence, chat sessions, phone calls, and so on. This care and attention is how you develop applicants who will rave about you and the service you provided them, and who will one day turn into that army of brand ambassadors we mentioned above.
Careful applicant tracking at this stage is also critical for making sure that new hires enter your workforce on a high note. Knowing how they found you is the first step, but knowing about their experience throughout the hiring process is the second, and it's just as important. What use are great campaigns if once a person enters the funnel they become disenchanted as a result of out of touch recruiters, lackluster service and support, and an utter lack of communication?
Tracking Tips: We could suggest surveys again here. They can be a useful complement to things like conversion rates from one stage of the funnel to another (the higher the conversion rate from started applications to completed applications, for instance, the better your user experience is). That said, you can use the stats from your CRM and ATS to track the actual contact touchpoints to verify that they’re happy all the way through the process. The combination of manual surveys and automated process tracking will give you a fuller picture of the entire funnel experience.
#4) Social Engagement
This is a broad category, covering all of the interactions you have with followers of your blog and your social media presences. It can be a great source of insights once you separate the mission critical from the superfluous. After all, nearly 60% of job candidates actively use social media to research potential employers, to say nothing of those who receive passive impressions while browsing.
Things to monitor include the comments section of your blog, where you can have substantive conversations about topics that matter to you and your audience. Then, obviously, there are likes, shares, retweets, favorites, and upvotes. This list also includes watching your social media accounts for any “@” mentions you get, in order to respond directly to the user who’s talking about you. That includes the good mentions, and the less-than-good.
Since (hopefully) a large people, even outside of your target audience, will be paying attention to how you respond to criticism, staying on top of this kind of activity can be fairly important. Handling situations promptly, clearly, in voice, and in-channel helps demonstrate your priorities, your culture, and your overall tech-savviness.
Tracking tips: Metric dashboards are available in most platforms, including the CMS (content management system) for your company blog. Likewise, Facebook, Twitter, et al have some powerful analytics dashboards for business accounts. Or, if you use recruitment marketing automation software, chances are that tool will have a campaign dashboard where you can keep track of all the channels used for a given campaign.
#5) Quality of Hire
How do you measure something as subjective as the quality of a new hire? This sense of ambiguity might be the reason that two-thirds of HR leaders don't have any metrics for tracking quality of hire. And yet, this is often listed as the #1 most important metric in all of recruiting. So there must be something concrete we can look at, right? Turns out, there is:
Hiring manager satisfaction
Performance reviews/ramp up time
Pre-hire metrics including:
Award-winning or otherwise known in the field
Passive vs active (passive are often higher quality since they weren’t actually looking to move at the time)
Tracking tips: Surveys (are you sensing a pattern?) to hiring managers for initial satisfaction with the hire as well as follow-ups for performance information. These don’t have to be long or involved, in fact the shorter and more succinct the more likely you’ll get buy in from the managers.
Surveys are also your best bet for the less tangible, like finding out if the candidate had competing offers, awards in their field (though that one should be on their resume as well), and whether they were a passive or active job hunter at the time of application.
All of the metrics and tips offered above are only worth the value you place on them. The more time and energy you devote to tracking your recruitment campaigns, the higher quality the data you’ll get out. And the higher quality your data is, the more impact you can have on your hiring process going forward.