I get asked this question all the time. On the surface, it’s not an easy question to answer considering there are 20+ talent acquisition technology product categories out there. But that’s not how you should be thinking about it because the answer is actually pretty simple. And here’s why.
While it’s important to understand where chat software fits in to your talent acquisition technology stack, it’s more important to understand and prioritize your talent acquisition challenges and then, and only then, think about how chat software fits in. Why? Because every organization’s challenges are different. Ergo, so are the solutions. Ergo, so will be the entire technology stack.
Okay, so who should be reading this?
Well, if one of your main challenges is finding that really hard to reach talent, then you should probably read on to figure out where chat software fits in.
And if that isn’t you and you just want to get a better understanding of the TA technology landscape in general then you should check out this excellent overview by SHRM.
Great. Now that we’ve established that, let’s get back to where chat software fits in the TA technology stack. As a reminder, chat software helps recruiters and talent acquisition professionals engage with hard to reach talent by giving candidates and recruiters a means to have meaningful conversations early in the recruiting process. So where does this fit in?
Chat software, CRM and recruitment marketing software
At the top of the funnel, chat software plays really well with Candidate Relationship Management (CRM) and recruitment marketing software which serve as a way to manage and nurture candidates. But these tools typically lack a key ingredient which is that they don’t give candidates a reason to engage. They are too much technology and not enough human. They are too much of a one way street from the recruiter to the candidate as opposed to the back and forth engagement that candidates expect. Let me explain further.
Your CRM keeps a list of all the candidates who may or may not be a good fit for your current and future job reqs. It likely allows you to send automated emails. And your recruitment marketing software likely allows you to send nurture emails, post jobs to social media, and qualify candidates. But none of these activities are going to move the needle unless you give candidates a reason to engage. Especially in today’s competitive job economy. And job postings are no longer enough especially for passive talent or highly sought after talent.
So this is where chat software fits in. Or rather, this is where chat shines. Chat software gives top talent a reason to engage. When you invite candidates to chat with your recruiters, you are not only giving your team a chance to assess candidates but candidates a chance to assess your team and company.
Chat software, chatbots, AI and text messaging
Okay, so what about chatbots and text messaging? Aren’t they the same thing? How does chat software compare? Like with the CRM and recruitment marketing software, chat software can play well with these tools in certain situations. But there are some major differences.
Chat software is more robust than chatbots. Chatbots work well for the maintenance level tasks like directing candidates to the career page on your website. Minimal effort for minimal tasks. In comparison, chat software allows you to connect on a deeper level and have more meaningful conversations that take place at a specified time with actual recruiters and candidates.
I’m sure you’re thinking that text messaging is also between actual recruiters and candidates and although you’d be right, there are still some differences. Unlike chat, text messages are used for quick conversations like to confirm an appointment or promote a job. This asynchronous communication channel works well because candidates are used to having short, quick conversations via SMS.
Chat software and video
Okay, so chat software is really good at engagement because it connects the recruiter and the candidate in this back and forth, purposeful conversation. So what about video? Well, the difference with video is that first, many times video interviewing is not real-time. Instead, recruiters ask candidates to record themselves answering pre-determined questions. The video may provide some depth but it doesn’t allow recruiters to ask follow up questions and it doesn’t allow candidates to assess recruiters or the company. And in the chase for really hard to reach talent, adding friction for the candidate is the last thing you want to do.
As you can see, chat software for recruiters can play an integral part in the talent acquisition technology stack for organizations that are trying to engage really hard-to-find talent. Although there are many technologies that compliment and support chat, those recruiters and organizations that appropriately prioritize chat software in their TA tech stack will be the ones poised to win this war on talent.
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