How to initiate omnichannel outreach and engage top talent

How to initiate omnichannel outreach and engage top talent

When it comes to top-tier candidates, you’re not the only recruiter trying to get their attention. A single phone conversation may not be enough to cut through the noise. To bring top talent on board, you’ll need to put in the work and build an engaging relationship with them.

When you have multiple communication channels available, why should you limit yourself to one? Follow-up phone calls with emails. Send text message reminders for interview appointments. Start discussions on social media. 

Following an omnichannel outreach strategy helps you attract the best candidates, connect with them, and increase the chances of successfully recruiting them. 

What is omnichannel recruiting?

Simply put, omnichannel recruitment refers to using multiple communication channels to connect with candidates through various stages of a recruitment funnel. Recruiters may communicate through phone calls, text messages, social media, career portals, physical events, etc. 

Here’s an example. Let’s say a recruiter had a telephone conversation with a candidate. They can then follow up with a text message and schedule an interview over e-mail later.

Omnichannel and multichannel recruitment may sound the same, but there’s one big difference. Omnichannel recruitment goes a step ahead of multichannel recruitment by relying on a single source of truth to create a unified conversational thread of communication through different channels. This allows recruiters to see the candidate’s entire journey at a glance, thereby improving the quality of each interaction. 

Why a single outreach channel is inefficient

Each communication channel available to recruiters has its pros and cons. A telephone call humanizes your brand and creates a connection with candidates, but the candidate may not always pick up your call. 

Similarly, emails are a great way to communicate details, but there may be quite a lag between responses. Bullhorn’s recent GRID Talent Trends Report found that candidates are 73% more likely to keep working with a firm if they found their recruiter to be attentive and responsive — which may not always be the case when relying on a single communication channel. Using an omnichannel approach lets recruiters leverage the benefits of each communication channel without being affected by its limitations. 

Using a single communication channel for recruitment may also make it harder to establish initial contact. Preferred communication channels vary by age. While senior executives may prefer emails, millennial and Gen Z candidates are more comfortable conversing over text messages. An omnichannel approach lets you communicate with candidates through the channel they are most comfortable with.

Benefits of an omnichannel approach

Every recruiter knows that they must guide candidates along multiple touchpoints before they can get them to sign a contract. Using an omnichannel approach makes the recruiting process smoother. Some of the key benefits of following such a strategy include: 

  • Get your message across: When you use only one mode of communication, there is a chance of the candidate missing out on your message. Emails may bounce back. Similarly, a candidate in a region with poor network coverage may not be able to answer your call. Following an omnichannel approach helps overcome this and increases the chances of having your message received by the candidate. 
  • Create seamless journeys: It can be quite frustrating for recruiters and candidates to repeat themselves at every interaction. With an omnichannel approach, recruiters can see all previous conversations and understand where the candidate is in the recruitment funnel. This allows them to continue conversations from where it was left off and maintain a seamless recruitment journey. Let’s say a candidate met with the recruiter at a job fair. This positions them as an active job seeker, and the recruiter can tailor their recruitment call script accordingly. 
  • Maintain consistent communication: When recruiters don’t follow up with candidates, it mars their experience; 62% of candidates stop working with a staffing firm because the process was too slow, according to the 2023 GRID Talent Trends Report. Let’s say a recruiter had a great telephone conversation. Following this up with a text message or an email helps maintain open communication lines. In turn, this improves the relationship between recruiters and candidates. 
  • Increase brand recall: According to a survey by HR Dive, candidates are 40% more likely to apply for a job when the company name is one they are familiar with. This is where following an omnichannel outreach strategy can help. For example, you can use social media posts to start discussions. Send email newsletters to announce new job openings and share testimonials from current employees. Having candidates interact with the recruiting company through different channels strengthens the brand image and increases familiarity. 

How to build an omnichannel outreach strategy

An omnichannel recruitment strategy can be beneficial for companies across all industries – retail, healthcare, finance, manufacturing, and so on. Here are a few key steps to help you build an omnichannel outreach strategy. 

Define your goals 

The first step to building an omnichannel outreach strategy is to understand and define your goals. Do you want to expand the brand reach? Or maybe you want to get more applications? Having well-defined goals gives you a direction for the outreach strategy and improves the efficacy of your strategy. 

Identify relevant communication channels 

It isn’t necessary to use all the communication channels available to you. You need to pick the best channels with the highest chance of impacting candidates. For this, you need to understand the pros and cons of each communication channel. Have a quick glance:

  • Cold calls: Cold calls are a great way to connect with candidates but wrongly timed calls especially when trying to reach international candidates can be frustrating. 
  • Email: Emails provide a good way to share information and let candidates respond in their own time. However, they are ineffective for real-time conversations. 
  • SMS: Text messages have a higher open rate but the amount of information that can be shared is limited. 
  • Social media: Social media can help build informal connections with candidates, but it is difficult to control everything published on social media discussions. 
  • Online job boards: They can be used to post open positions optimized with relevant keywords that make it easy to find. However, this is a passive form of recruitment. 

Create message templates 

Once you have identified the communication channels through which you can connect with candidates, you need to create templates for communication. Messages should be concise, direct, and free from jargon, maintain the brand tone and include a clear call to action. 

Here are a few examples: 

  • First-touch emails: 

Hi [candidate name] 

I am recruiting for [position] at [company name] and came across your profile on [where you got their contact from]. I think you would be a good fit for this role. I’d love to tell you more about it. Would you be free for a quick call on [date/time]? 

I hope to hear from you soon. 

  • LinkedIn invitation:

Hello [candidate name]. I am recruiting for [position] at [company name]. Your profile makes you a great fit and I would like to talk to you about it. 

These templates should not be followed verbatim. Instead, they should be used as a framework that can be personalized for each candidate. 

Set up a recruitment cadence 

For an omnichannel outreach strategy to work effectively, messaging must be consistent and regular. You need a multi-touch recruitment cadence. Messaging must be regular enough to keep the candidate engaged and yet be spaced at intervals that ensure you don’t come across as too pushy. The three steps involved in setting up a recruitment cadence are: 

  • Define touchpoints: A cadence usually involves six to eight touchpoints across the brand awareness, consideration, and application stages. 
  • Set timelines: A recruitment cadence is usually spread across two weeks from the brand awareness to the interviewing stage. 
  • Fix intervals: Space out your interactions to make sure the candidate remembers you without being too aggressive. 

Here’s an example of a recruitment cadence: 

Day 1: LinkedIn Connection Invitation + message 

Day 2: Introductory email

Day 4: Call 

Day 7: Follow-up text message 

Day 8: Follow-up email 

Day 10: Follow up call/ voicemail 

Use data to make an omnichannel outreach strategy work 

An omnichannel outreach strategy unifies communication across channels and hence must break through siloes. Before a recruiter sends an email at the second touchpoint of a cadence, they must know what was said in the first cold call. 

As a unified communication platform, Ringover’s integration with Bullhorn makes it easier to track interactions and helps track candidate journeys through the recruitment funnel. It helps create clear workflows and automates information sharing to create an intuitive system for recruiters. 

An omnichannel outreach recruitment strategy can help recruiters get the best talent for their teams. You can talk about the brand and open positions through calls, text messages, emails, social media sites, and so on. This puts you in a position to reach out to candidates with tailored pitches through the medium they prefer. 

The more you engage with candidates, the more likely you are to bring them on board. That said, to experience maximum benefits, you need the right communication platform and recruitment software. Ringover and Bullhorn are the ideal tools. 

Discover more about the Ringover / Bullhorn Partnership.

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