Elevating lead generation with Chatbot: Insights from ep.education
Recruitment automation is a vital component in an agency’s arsenal helping recruiters to be more efficient in their everyday activities. An increasingly key part of any good automation strategy is being able to provide an omni-channel experience via SMS, email and chatbot. This ensures you engage the right people, at the right time to share the information they want. By doing this you can uncover new opportunities and boost conversion or enhance the experience of returning candidates and clients.
In a recent webinar, we were joined by ep.education’s, Senior Operations & Systems Consultant, Hamish Annan. Part of anzuk’s global family in education recruitment, ep.education specialise in teacher recruitment in the New Zealand market. They provide daily relief, fixed term, contract and permanent roles as well as specialist professional development for teachers.
The webinar session hosted by Bullhorn’s Hugh Catterall, Global Account Director and Nathan Green, Senior Solution Consultant, focused on how a proactive automation strategy leveraging Chatbot can help to improve response rates, and boost candidate experience and engagement. Watch the on-demand webinar and read on to make sure you’ll never miss a potential new candidate again.
The candidate market is ever-changing with different generations — Baby Boomers, Gen X, Gen Y and Gen Z — who have distinct motivations and preferences in the workforce. Recruiters must be aware of the differing characteristics of each group and be able to adapt to each in order to provide the best candidate experience.
When asked about what interested ep.education about using Chatbot, Annan commented, “I’m very conscious of the way that different generations want to communicate and expect companies to be able to communicate with them. So anything that opened up a new channel for us…I was really keen to integrate into our communication channels.”
He emphasized the importance of “acknowledging the different engagement channels that the people who you’re working with are wanting and expecting is really important. Chatbot is a solution to some of those.”
Implementing Chatbot for lead generation
1. Start small
Integrating a Chatbot onto your website doesn’t need to result in a long term project with multiple stakeholders. Sitting within Bullhorn, Chatbot is specifically built for recruitment. It has initiative keyword branching capabilities meaning you can create a chat flow quickly.
“The barrier to entry is really low”, Annan stated. “If you’re already using automation, for me the advantage is it leverages the same building tools that you are already familiar with. So it’s not like you’re having to learn a new tool or technique at all. It’ll make sense to you the moment you start using it.”
ep.education was able to start using the Chatbot on their website almost instantly. “On the first day we implemented it [Chatbot], we didn’t announce it in any particular way, but we had 20 plus inquiries overnight, and that has only compounded since”, Annan said.
2. Identify your target audience
This step involves some background knowledge around who your business is targeting and how you want to use Chatbot to interact with them. This will allow you to prioritise the candidates who are the most likely to engage with your Chatbot and who want to be placed into their next role by your team.
Annan knew that ep.education was “one of a few companies who are servicing the majority of teaching roles in New Zealand, so we’ve sort of carved out a bit of a market, but that wasn’t necessarily converting through our existing channels into leads.” From this, he “saw a really unique opportunity to use the Chatbot as a lead form to begin with, then slowly building out the capabilities from there.”
3. Let your audience guide you
Once you’ve made the Chatbot live on your website, you can now refine it based on your audience preferences and needs.
ep.education built a simple chat which Annan implemented quickly knowing they could modify it as needed once their candidates started interacting with it. “We were able to let our audience, our teachers, tell us how to change and develop it…the great part is you can add to the chatbot as opposed to having to do this massive project upfront”, Annan said. “Allowing our audience to tell us what they want from it has been really, really beneficial.”
4. Adopt a conversational tone
When using Chatbot, the conversation should mirror a natural conversation you’re having with someone. There are back and forth exchanges where responses correspond to information being shared. Adopt a conversational tone to provide candidates with a better experience when interacting with Chatbot.
Based on the language candidates were using with ep.education, “that informed how we could then make the chatbot ‘talk’. There’s a more conversational tone that you tend to go for. So finding that chatbot voice was a really interesting project for us”, Annan stated.
5. Be a step ahead of compliance
Employment law is often littered with complex laws, rules and regulations relating to work rights, wages, and workplace health and safety. Compliance is crucial for all agencies, regardless of the industries you work across.
ep.education decided to stay one step ahead and only connect candidates with their recruiters who were ready to be placed. “We had a lot of candidates coming through that we just can’t work with. It’s really down to compliance. So what we’ve actually built into it, are screening measures within the Chatbot so we can start to filter out those candidates before even a human touches those teachers”, Annan explained.
A story of ep.education’s success
ep.education has successfully implemented Chatbot for lead generation using the five steps stated above. They are able to provide more personalised experience to people on their website as the chats are guided by their candidate interactions. Recruiters are having more meaningful conversations with engaged talent and they are seeing more website visitor conversions as a result.
One example Annan shared was of a candidate who had just landed in New Zealand. They were on the ep.education website and opened Chatbot. Interacting with the Chatbot they were quickly connected with a recruiter who got them into a placement within a week and a half. Annan highlighted, “The interesting thing was that they weren’t on our database, so we would never have been able to reactivate them, they hadn’t emailed us previously. He continued, “catching those candidates that we would’ve never have spoken to begin with, has actually been the real benefit of the Chatbot.”