Question: Are you reading this from a mobile device? These days, I’d be willing to bet that answer is “yes”. According to a recent study from research firm Gartner, Inc., by the end of this year, mobile phones will overtake PCs as the most common web access device worldwide. Not only that, but eMarketer forecasts the number of mobile shoppers in the U.S. will increase by 24 percent this year and represent 62 percent of digital shoppers. These findings speak to the great impact mobile devices have on our day-to-day lives.
And it’s not just consumer who are relying on mobile to make decisions: more and more, job seekers are using mobile devices to search for jobs and research potential employers. In fact, as of October 2012, 25 percent of CareerBuilder’s traffic comes from mobile devices – and that number is only growing.
As mobile technology becomes more ubiquitous as a job search tool, it becomes increasingly important for employers to embrace mobile technology as a recruiting tool. Unless of course, you believe the following myths about mobile recruitment:
1. Creating a mobile recruitment website is more hassle than it’s worth.
A mobile website helps generate even more traffic to your site, because it provides improved rankings on mobile-friendly search engines such as Google and Yahoo, and also allows placement in a growing number of mobile and local directories. Thus, creating a mobile-friendly website is single-handedly one of the easiest ways to increase traffic to your career site and the likelihood of candidates applying. Moreover, a recent Google study reveals that over half of smart phone users (61 percent) are likely to leave a site right away that doesn’t offer a user-friendly mobile experience. Even more (79 percent) say they’ll search for another mobile site to do the job. Given the similarities between candidate job search behavior and consumer buying behavior, employers would be wise to pay attention to these findings. If 20 percent of your traffic comes from mobile devices, and you do not have a mobile-optimized site, you could be driving away nearly 80 percent of those candidates (which leads me to the next reason not to create a mobile strategy…)
2. Having a mobile-friendly website won’t increase traffic.
Okay, this myth is only half false. You might not necessarily increase traffic to your website with a mobile-friendly career site; however, you do risk losing traffic if you don’t have one. Why? If your website doesn’t look good on a smart phone, users will move on to one that does – and they have plenty of options: A recent CareerBuilder survey shows that 57 percent of employers with 1,000 or more employees have mobile-friendly versions of their career sites. If you’re not among this group, you’re putting yourself at risk of losing valuable candidates to mobile-friendly competitors.
3. A mobile-friendly career site has no effect your employment brand.
A mobile website improves the user experience and satisfaction, ultimately creating positive feelings toward a company’s brand, according to recent research on mobile website usability. On the flip side, websites that are NOT mobilized can leave visitors with a poor impression of a company’s brand. According the above-mentioned Google study, 55 percent of consumers say a poor experience on a mobile site hurts their opinion of a brand overall, and 52 percent say it makes them less likely to engage with a company. Remember, candidates are consumers, too, meaning their mobile experience with your career site will have the same impact on your employment brand.
4. Mobile sites are ‘Bleeding edge.’
Having a mobile-friendly website is no longer considered cutting edge – the same way having a social media page is no longer considered ahead of the curve. Therefore, going mobile isn’t about staying ahead of the competition: it’s about keeping up, especially as job searches conducted from mobile devices increases. It is imperative that employers take the steps now to connect with the growing number of potential applicants who visit their websites from mobile devices.
Remember: The adoption of new technology is now happening faster than ever before. The World Wide Web changed everything, and since then, social media, smartphones, and tablets have had a profound impact on the way people share and consume content, and particularly the way people look for jobs. Consider mobile the next significant step in talent acquisition. One you need to embrace sooner rather than later – because whether you like it or not, that’s where talent acquisition is headed. The question is: will you be there with it?
For more information about CareerBuilder’s mobile recruitment solutions, go here, or download The Evolution of Mobile Recruitment: What It Is, Why It Matters, and Where To Start.