Mobile: is it the perfect storm for talent sourcing?

Globally, there are over six billion mobile phones in circulation, with 2.5 billion people accessing the internet from their mobile phones.

Today, we are always switched on, able to source immediate, personalised data via a device that travels with us, wherever we go. As a game-changer for decision-based behaviour, we now have access to information on demand, using our mobile devices to ask questions and source answers across all aspects of our lives.

The perfect opportunity

The immediacy of mobile lends itself to action; we are contactable and connected, no matter where we are. When it comes to talent sourcing and the recruitment process, this presents a mostly untapped opportunity. Some call mobile, and the way it has changed how we interact with information, The Perfect Storm. A metaphor for describing how rare, multiple forces can combine to drastically change a situation. The suggestion is also that the storm’s outcome may be outside of human control.

But when it comes to recruitment, the so-called perfect storm may in fact be the perfect opportunity. Understanding how mobile devices have impacted candidate behaviour enables hirers to better target talent, and engage with candidates – wherever they go.

Mobile search = action

Here’s what we know. Candidates use mobile for job search. Over in the US, Forbes estimates that 70% of job-seekers use mobile devices in their job searching. At home, in Australia, where 70% of the population owns either a smartphone or tablet device (32% own both), a 2012 Google survey found that 23% of mobile searches related to job opportunities. Even more compelling, the survey revealed 88% of users performing a local search took action after it.

Here at SEEK, over 50% of our visits now come from a mobile device and we are seeing over 27% year-on-year growth in Australia. In New Zealand, the market growth is even greater, surpassing 51% in the past year. More tellingly for hirers, applications submitted from mobile phones are now 24% of all applications, and have grown 56% year-on-year.

Harness the behaviour

It all points to the potential for mobile to dramatically impact talent sourcing. Mobile users have a demonstrated tendency toward action when sourcing information via their device. If hirers can harness this behaviour through the strategic use of apps, mobile sites and targeted messaging, they will be in a position to both drive engagement and encourage positive action from candidates.

And suddenly the perfect storm really does look like that perfect opportunity, for candidates and hirers alike.

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