Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Improve your Recruitment Website in 5 Simple Steps

Recruitment is fast becoming an online game, slowly becoming less reliant on the telephone and moving towards the digital sector.

As recruiters begin to understand the usefulness of Linkedin, Twitter, Search Engine Optimisation and other already-established technologies, they are realising the importance of their own website as the hub from which all other online promotion stems.

It is easy to be daunted by social media jargon, internet acronyms and tech-speak, but sift through the ambiguous elements and you'll find a business solution that is far simpler than you might think and simply cannot be avoided.

Here I have attempted to simplify a few steps on small adjustments that could be made to an existing site to get you started.

1. Printer versions

So from iPads to Android, from Macs to Smart TVs, everything seems to be digitised in some shape or form; but it's always easier to read content from a sheet of paper than a screen.

Many people would rather read a printed sheet than a screen shot, particularly if it's a topic that needs to be carefully examined like a company specification or a job description.

It is not hard to include a small option to add 'printer version' functionality to a page where a single click will reduce the page to a white background, black text, and all non-essential images and website features removed.

Instantly your website has not only demonstrated some useful content, but you have made it incredibly easy for a visitor to retain a hard copy of your company branded materials.

Try clicking the 'Print View' icon at the foot of the page on my portfolio for an example - http://www.mikewedge.co.uk

This brings me to my next point.

2. One-click downloadable company profile (pdf)

Many visitors to your site will be looking for a snapshot of information on your business.

By offering a concise introduction to your business via an omnipresent link around the site, you encourage the visitor to take information about your business away with them, and also command what exactly that information includes.

3. Social media share options

Social media should never be overlooked by any website owner regardless of sector.

The power of social media in online marketing is still hugely underrated by business owners. Twitter has over 300 million members, there are definitely people on Twitter who are interested in what your business does, and they will likely find you eventually.

Likewise Linkedin, mostly for those aiming at the higher-end professionals, and of course Facebook, mostly applicable to high volume and temp recruitment (although the fastest growing membership on Facebook is in fact the older audience).

A simple button to encourage users to 'Tweet this page', 'Share on Facebook', or 'Share on Linkedin' is not only a hugely effective way of benefiting from user interactivity and promotion, but it's also very easy to set up, and most importantly of all - it's free!

Check out 'AddThis' buttons here, or 'ShareThis' buttons here to find out how you could add this simple but incredibly effective tool to your site.

4. Search-engine-friendly URLs

Search engine friendly URLs involve the practice of organising your files online.

A search engine is meant to act intuitively to find the most relevant content searched for, it does this by scanning through all the information on the page (spidering) and deciding it's relevance to various terms.

If a candidate was to Google 'project manager jobs swindon' which of the following URL's do you think would likely have greater success?

A: http://www.recruitmentcompany.com/detailtemp/cands/jobview.asp?v=1280679


B: http://www.recruitmentcompany.com/jobs/swindon/project-manager.asp

Additionally, if a potential candidate were to see either URL, they would either instantly recognise what is and ascertain it's relevance to them or it would be ignored.

This is a swift change in the structure of your online database, where doing so would help both your online organisation and the visibility of the content you are wishing to display.

5. External links open a new window

Finally a simple one to finish this instalment.

If your site links to a different site elsewhere on the internet, it must open in a new window.

This will mean that your site will remain open once the user has finished with the additional content, and the visitor will continue to interact with your site.

This includes links to pdf's (some of which open in browsers), links to external sites and any other document links that might take over the 'parent window'.

Please bear in mind you should not open new window within your own site, as this can seriously affect user experience and become very irritating!

The next instalments of quick improvements to be published in due course, feel free to sign your email address up to receive updates if you wish to be kept up to date - I will never spam you. Ever.

If you have any questions about any of the topics mentioned above please do not hesitate to get in touch and see how your website might benefit from an update.

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