What Recruitment Marketing Metrics Should You Be Tracking?

In today’s hyper-competitive job market, it’s extremely difficult for a company to stand out. That’s where recruitment marketing comes in, but how to know if your campaigns are paying off? With data, of course!

Data, in this case, means metrics. Metrics are the key to showing you where the ROI is, where the budget is being wasted, and which pieces of your campaign are worth the effort. We’ve compiled a shortlist of our favorite metrics, these are the ones that every RM team should be monitoring to have a firm grasp on how successful their efforts are. Some are concrete, with easily quantifiable measurements readily available through the usual tools (ATS records, CRM reports, etc.) while others are a bit more nebulous and subjective in nature. For those last ones, we’ve also included some ideas for how to go about measuring in a meaningful way.

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This gets a lot of coverage, in fact, we’ve already written about it right here on the blog. That just goes to show you how important it is, we’re willing to risk repeating ourselves. Source of hire is a key to not only measuring the success of a particular campaign or for reporting on a particular opening, but also as part of determining where to spend your budget and other resources. When it comes time to judge the efficacy of a marketing channel, knowing the source-of-hire will tell you which channels are returning results and which aren’t. This allows you to shut down the under-performers to shift focus to those with better ROI.

Tracking this metric is tantamount to tracking where your budget is going. If you find that 80% of new hires started as Twitter followers, you can easily justify beefing up your presence on that channel. On the other hand, if 5% is coming from Snapchat ads, it may be time to shut that one down in favor of something with a better conversion rate. You can always revisit each channel later, or do some A/B type testing on specific openings.


Social engagement

With the increasing importance of social media in RM, it’s key to know how engaged your target audience actually is with your presence on each platform so you know where to focus your energy. If one channel turns out to be underperforming, as Snapchat was above, you can use your metrics to back up the decision to shut down that channel for that campaign and refocus the resources elsewhere.

That said, this is one of those nebulous metrics, what exactly is “engagement” anyway? Start by using measurements that are readily available like follower count, clicks, and shares. Then put together a campaign-specific set of metrics based on those items to give you a sense of how engaged your target candidates are with your presence on each channel. This combination will give you a pretty clear idea of how impactful your presence is, especially when you combine these with your source-of-hire numbers from above.



Time-to-acceptance is a new take on time-to-fill and is a bit more appropriate given today’s candidate market. Instead of counting the time from application all the way to the first day on the job, this measures only until an offer is accepted. The relevance of this difference is that a lot more can happen in this time span than in the gap between acceptance and first day. By looking only at the time a candidate spends in the funnel, the picture is a lot sharper.

The reason for this is simple, there is so much competition for top-quality candidates that the risk of losing a candidate during this time is much higher.


Competing offers can come in at any time, and people are often entertaining multiple offers at once. If it takes too long for an offer to be made, candidates can easily be lost. Frankly, given the importance of this, the relevance of what happens between acceptance and the first day pales in comparison.


Employee referrals

A truly well-rounded recruitment marketing strategy has to take into account the impact of a company’s #1 asset—existing employees. Looking at this metric will help you see the specific impact on incoming applications. A new Jobvite report points out that only 7% of candidates are employee referred, but 40% of hires are employee referred. This can be wildly helpful for our last metric, but we’re getting ahead of ourselves.

You can make this one easier by offering a side-track application process for these referrals. By moving these applications along in their own process, you’re ensuring that the candidate knows their value and will keep these applications from potentially being lost in the proverbial shuffle (or the ATS black hole for that matter). Measuring is made easier if you can put that side-track in place, but even if not, all that’s needed is a quick questionnaire for new hires that ask straight up if they were referred by an existing employee and if so, who.



An oldie but a goodie. This metric continues to be one of the most talked-about and widely accepted metrics in the HR world. And with good reason, when it comes to gauging the success of any type of recruitment effort, how much it’s costing is probably the first thing the higher-ups are going to ask about. The more bang for your buck, the better, right? This is where that comment about employee referrals applies, after all, it’s a heck of a lot cheaper to fund an employee referral program with spa days or sports tickets than it is to launch an entirely new campaign from scratch.

Along with RM fundamentals like nurturing your social media audience so those passive job seekers remember to come calling when the time is right and using content marketing tactics as part of your campaigns, you can keep the funnel full without spending obscene amounts of money.

cost-per-hireThe HR world is chock full of data and ways to measure that data. By keeping your attention on some basic metrics like those above, you can keep your budget on track and your talent pool teeming long into the future. And that’s the key to sustainable growth in any industry.