A Career Site Audit is More Important Than You Think. Here’s Why

In a recent blog, we discussed how your company’s career site should be the anchor of your social recruiting strategy—and for good reason. According to one study, 76% of candidates prefer to apply for jobs directly through a company’s career site, making it all the more important to have yours in tip top shape. The easier it is for candidates to find the information they are looking for and apply, the better their candidate experience will be and the more likely you’ll have a more qualified pool of applicants. So how do you begin thinking about conducting your own career site audit? We’ve got four key questions to get you started.

1. Does your career site give a good first impression?

First impressions are everything when it comes to the digital world. According to Time, you only have 15 seconds to capture the attention of your audience before they ditch your site. Does your career site give a good first impression? Is it chaotic, difficult to navigate? Does it use a lot of catchy headlines with no content to back them up? If so, it might be time to make some changes.

Ideally, an effective career site will provide candidates with five to seven categories on the main navigation bar to look through. These pages will give candidates insight into what they can learn about your company as they tour your career site. Performing culture research, evaluating web analytics (see #4) and creating your Employee Value Proposition can help identify what these categories need to be.

2. Do you provide insight into what it’s really like to work there?

Your career site is an opportunity for candidates to self-select in or out of your company, so it is important that it effectively communicates your culture. Not every candidate who searches your career site will be a fit for your culture, so this is your opportunity to honestly share what it’s like to work at your organization and better attract the right candidates.

Take a look at your career site through the eyes of a candidate. Does your content feel genuine and authentic, or is it using classic corporate jargon? The career site is an opportunity to broadcast what’s truly unique at your organization. Tell candidates about your culture and what type of people thrive and succeed in your environment. And when it comes down to specific job functions, day-in-the-life videos provide candidates with a more realistic job preview, and can contribute to increased new hire retention.

3. Are you showcasing your employees?

Your best asset is often your existing employees. Invite them to share what they love about their job and working for your company through employee testimonial videos, blogs or quotes. By hearing from an employee already holding the position they are interested in, candidates can better understand what their day-to-day role might be like and increase their enthusiasm for working for your company. And when showcasing employees, authentic is the name of the game—stock photography and made-up quotes just aren’t effective.

4. Are you using research?

Knowing what’s important to include in your career site takes getting to know the talent landscape and competitors in your industry, which is why research is so important. Culture research should encompass this, but it may help to revisit the research again for your career site. In addition, take a look at the career sites of some of your top competitors to better understand where you can stand out. It’s easy to see something a competitor does and want to replicate it, but be sure to honor your authentic culture.

Other important research tools include Google Analytics and Hotjar to tell you how career site pages are performing and what information users are most interested in. The top pages might surprise you. And if something isn’t performing well, don’t immediately scrap the content—it may still be relevant to candidates. Experiment its placement on the page or within navigation to help improve performance before removing.

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Go forth and conquer

Now that you’ve completed your own career site audit, it’s time to take action. Your career site should be an ongoing initiative that you audit regularly. And remember, your career site is meant to increase the application rate, so lead candidates to your open jobs at every chance possible. If you’re still unsure of what a great career site looks like, or just want to take a peek at what other companies are doing, check out some best-in-class examples.

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