mobile apply

Everyone is always talking about Mobile Recruiting, but what that term really means, and how to implement a truly mobile recruitment and hiring process, has been confusing.  To help break it down, we have broken it into two buckets. First, given that job seekers and job searches are now predominantly coming from mobile devices, employers must have careers pages and job applications that are mobile friendly. Second, once employers receive applicants, they must provide mobile friendly solutions to current employees to track and process applicants.

We cover both topics in the guide below and provide practical instructions to evaluate your mobile recruiting process and needs. Read on and bring your recruiting process into the modern era.


As employers, we must go where the talent – and the times – are taking us.

It’s true, mobile web traffic is poised to surpass the desktop as the #1 way people all over the world access the internet. This is having an important impact on the way people look for and apply to jobs. Recent research by the Pew Research Center found that a majority of adults (54%) in the U.S. have gone online to look for job opportunities and 45% have applied for a job online (Pew Research Center). And while many of today’s job seekers are using their smartphones to browse and apply to jobs, many employers are still not equipped to deal with mobile employment matters.

Despite all the research and persuasive evidence that mobile matters more than ever, many employers remain confused by mobile recruiting. Unfortunately, the vendor landscape hasn’t unified (and won’t) behind any one standard, leaving employers unclear of how to optimize and prioritize their efforts. As a result, job seekers are frustrated and recruiters are missing out on opportunities to convert mobile job seekers to applicants. Employers that haven’t modernized their recruiting processes and technology to accommodate mobile job seekers are already suffering from a competitive disadvantage and the pace to the bottom is accelerating.

To put the importance of a fully mobile recruiting  process into perspective, consider the pervasiveness of mobile through the lens of marketing departments. Keep in mind that marketing to job seekers is very similar to marketing to consumers.

mobile recruiting

More data on mobile recruiting:

  • 48% of consumers start mobile research with a search engine. (Smart Insights, 2015).
  • 71% of marketers believe mobile marketing is core to their business. (Salesforce, 2015).
  • Average smartphone conversion rates are up 64% compared to the average desktop conversion rates. (CMS Report, 2015).

Developing a unified mobile recruitment strategy is more than just a trend or hot topic. It’s a necessity for employers. Given the explosive growth of mobile-only usage, it no longer makes sense to treat the mobile applicant experience as a separate piece of an overall talent acquisition strategy. It’s time to create a unified approach that improves the user experience for every user.

In the next step, we dispel the confusion so you will be able to better prioritize your efforts and steer away from piecemeal technology purchases.

PART 1: Mobile Apply

mobile apply

Mobile Apply is More Than a Trend

Smartphone adoption has grown faster than any other consumer technology in history. With US mobile internet usage set to surpass desktop this year, job searches conducted from mobile devices is the new norm. Human Resources experts are taking notice, in an April 2015 blog post on by Dave Zielinski, titled Mobile Recruiting’s Next Wave (SHRM.Org) –Zielinski writes: “It wasn’t long ago that having a responsive careers website and a mobile-friendly job application process were aspirational goals for recruiters, features restricted to a handful of progressive organizations. But today, those functions are part and parcel of effective hiring strategies as mobile recruiting evolves into a new stage.” There’s no doubt that for 2016, it’s critical for employers to offer a mobile-optimized career page and job application processes to job seekers.

What is a Mobile Careers Page?

Mobile career sites turn traditional career sites into easy to navigate, mobile friendly job seeking experiences that ensure your organization is meeting every applicant where they are, regardless of what device or computer they are using to look for a job. A mobile career site shouldn’t be just a recreation of your desktop site. Instead, you’ll want to feature the information mobile job seekers want to see such as a list of jobs and job descriptions. Reduce the number of clicks and the amount of scrolling. Make it easy for applicants to get the information they need. Remember, the fewer the clicks, the more likely an applicant will convert to a candidate.

What is a Mobile Job Application?

A mobile-friendly career page is next to worthless without a complimentary mobile job application process. Throughout the application process, your job applications need to also seamlessly adapt to any screen. And, given that many smartphone and tablets don’t have a file system (no local storage to store a resume), you’ll need to provide the ability to upload resumes stored in cloud storage like Google Drive or Dropbox. Finally, if that isn’t enough, you need to make sure that job seekers are able to complete critical voluntary affirmative action questionnaires and answer screening questions so you don’t compromise EEO and OFCCP compliance.

mobile friendly job application

Check List of Mobile Apply Must Haves

  • Mobile Careers Page
  • Mobile Job Application
  • Ability for Applicants to Upload Resume from Cloud Storage
  • Ability to Capture Voluntary AA / EEO information
  • Seamless Integrates with the Rest of your Recruiting Stack

Mobile apply is about making it easy for job seekers to apply to your from whatever device, smartphone or computer they choose without compromising recruiting compliance. Your mobile career page needs to be lightweight, quick to load and must provide applicants easy access to the information they are interested in – jobs.

Newton Functionality

Employers using Newton’s ATS software gain immediate access to mobile job seekers with Mobile Career Pages and Mobile Job Applications. As a standard (no additional cost) feature of Newton’s applicant tracking system, this essential mobile recruiting functionality empowers every organization to immediately participate in the new generation of job searches by presenting an ideal combination of interaction and usability.

PART 2: Responsive Applicant Tracking Systems

applicant tracking

What is Responsive?

The next frontier for developers of modern applicant tracking systems (and HR Technology in general) is to develop solutions that perform well on any device, even those that have not been invented yet. Until recently, the solution has been to create a different product for every device. This is commonly referred to as an “App Strategy”: developing different products for an iPad, iPhone and Android App, as well as a desktop version. In 2014, the market will benefit from the emergence of universal platforms that are capable of adapting to any screen size. These “responsive” products are setting the bar for usability, accessibility and user adoption rates

Users Demand Mobility!

For applicant tracking systems, one fixed-width layout of data simply does not work anymore. This means the width is fixed at a specific number of pixels (typically 800 pixels) and doesn’t change no matter how big or small the user’s screen is. Given the variety of screen variations that people work on today, fixed-width pages are preventing the effective use of Applicant Tracking Systems. While some vendors are correct in asserting that their platforms can be accessed on mobile devices, they mean that their product can be viewed on mobile devices. However, this doesn’t mean that users can actually complete the application process on an iPhone or Android. Scrolling, zooming, pinching and squinting are not viable options for users anymore; having a responsive ATS software is required.

Responsive Is Now

It’s undeniable; today’s workforces are freer to work from anywhere they want to work. Employers expect people to be productive while on the move, which requires technology that empowers people to work from anywhere in the world, on whatever device they choose. As a result, workers are fueling the demand for mobile solutions. Employers must respond with responsive products. These platforms understand what screen size is being used to access the platform. Responsive platforms automatically provide context and will appropriately juxtapose the right data being displayed, with the right controls, on any device and on any browser, at speeds we’ve never experienced before.

Responsive design is the new mobile. It will prove to be immeasurably beneficial for the recruiting technology industry and consumers of HR technology in general. Responsiveness is the catalyst that we’ve all been waiting for to truly accelerate the socialization of recruiting technology beyond just recruiters and HR professionals.

Our industry is once again on the cusp of reinventing itself and with the help of new technologies like HTML5, one-page apps, and JavaScript, the cornerstones of responsive design. 2016 is going to be a breakthrough year and the perfect set-up for what’s to come in an industry that truly is experiencing a technical renaissance.

Get Responsive

Interested in affordable, responsive hiring software for your company? Newton is the only responsive, future-ready applicant tracking system designed to organize and improve internal hiring programs for small and medium-sized employers. Don’t hesitate, get in touch with a Newton expert today!

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