Common Automation Journey-Building Roadblocks (And How to Avoid Them)

nurturing talent

I’m sure you’ve heard the expression, “Slow and steady wins the race.” It’s a perfectly valid philosophy. I mean, except for that whole slow part. Fast would be better, especially when it comes to building automations. But the skill set required to build successful automation journeys doesn’t develop overnight.

If your recruiting firm has invested in an automation platform only to land smack in the middle of a seemingly endless 15 mph construction zone, you aren’t alone. Many recruiting firms are hitting roadblocks as they build automation journeys. Here are a few ways to get over, under, or around them.

Roadblock #1: Unrealistic Expectations

Building candidate journeys is not quick or easy. It requires deep, detailed thought. One step leads to another and another. There are tons of variables and lots of audience fields to fill in. You must establish nomenclature, and it’s a good idea to make a data dictionary.

If you think it’s going to take ten hours to build a journey with twelve touchpoints and it takes thirty, you might be disappointed no matter how much time you eventually save with that automation. But if you begin the journey with a realistic expectation of complexity, you can keep your focus on future time saved, and revenue gained.

Roadblock #2 Bad Data (or No Data)

You wouldn’t expect a car with a missing engine to carry you across the country, so you can’t expect an ATS with insufficient data to create a successful candidate journey. Look under the hood before you begin. Do you have a lot of old or missing phone numbers and emails in candidate profiles? If so, there’s good news.

You can create a one-off campaign to help fix bad or missing data. Try a text that looks something like this:

“Hi [username], it’s [yourname] from [yourcompany]. Are you still looking for work? We’re updating our records and would love to find a new role for you. Reply yes, and we’ll put you at the top of our list!”

Reach out to those who respond, confirm their best contact methods, and put them to work! Creating another one-off campaign to weed out bad emails will give you another pool of active candidates ready for placement. Eventually, your data roadblock will turn into an up-to-date database with processes in place for keeping it that way.

Roadblock #3: ROI Doubt

Automation offers great opportunities to save time on busy work and spend that time building relationships that will improve your bottom line. But how do you know if it’s working? Here are some indicators of success:

  • Admin time saved by recruiters
  • Less money spent on job ads because jobs are filled from your database
  • Better satisfaction ratings and NPS through improved engagement with candidates and clients

An excellent way to dig deep into automation ROI is to choose key performance indicators for your journeys and then build them into a spreadsheet to capture hours saved and additional revenue gained. For example:

Suppose you have 100 candidates starting a new assignment on Monday, and it takes 2 minutes to leave a start-date reminder message on each of their voicemails. In that case, a start-date reminder automation can save 200 minutes. If a recruiter uses those 200 minutes to follow up with hot prospects, it’s a double gain.

Don’t let ROI doubt roadblock your success. Document processes to serve as a benchmark for automation success and get on the road!

Roadblock #4: No Roadmap

There are so many ways automation journeys can improve processes, engagement, and databases that it’s difficult to know where to start. It’s also easy to wander all over the map. And getting lost is a considerable roadblock!

You wouldn’t drive across the country without GPS or a map, so don’t expect to build journeys without creating a roadmap. Your business will help you plan your route, but here are five candidate journey ideas to get you started. Plan where you want to go and an ideal timeline for how long you think it will take to get there.

As you build journeys and get more familiar with the platform, you will likely see other thrilling places you want to visit. Decide if that trip needs to happen today or in the future. Sometimes a journey idea will alter your whole map, and sometimes you’ll bounce away from the road to make some notes and then snap back to your original itinerary.

Roadblock #5 No One in the Driver’s Seat

What’s the first thing you do when you get into the car? Fasten your seatbelt? Or do you plug your phone into the navigation system? Wait—you aren’t going anywhere until you decide who’s going to drive. And if you’re going to drive across the country on a tight timeline, you might need more than one driver.

Building automations is the same way. It’s difficult to “step in and out” of an automation platform. Defining triggers, audiences, and touchpoints requires deep focus. You must invest considerable time—almost daily—before you can reap the benefits. Decide who is driving the automation platform for your firm. If you have more than one driver—great! Just make sure they’re driving the same car. Knowing who has their foot on the gas pedal at all times will eliminate another roadblock to automation success.

Stay the course!

Being aware of potential roadblocks will get you through them faster and on the road to improved candidate engagement, hands-free internal processes, and an up-to-date database.


Need help creating an automation roadmap?

Contact the recruiting automation experts at Haley Marketing.



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