Job Seekers Want Better Mobile Job Applications: Here’s How to Improve Yours

by:
on April 30, 2019

By now, you should know that it’s not enough to put a job posting out to the world and hope applicants come flooding in. You should also know that as modern job seekers become more tech-savvy, they’re not only making judgments about your job descriptions, they’re also making judgments about their user and candidate experience during the applicant process.

These days, your candidate experience will set you apart from your competitors. Job seekers expect to be able to apply for jobs on mobile, yet 60% of job seekers have had a poor candidate experience during their recruitment and applicant processes. And, with the rise in mobile job applications, businesses need to address the needs of the modern job seeker—66% of working Americans expect companies to have a mobile friendly job application process.

of career sites aren’t optimized for mobile.
is the typical drop off rate during a job application process.
of job seekers have quit a job application due to its length or complexity.

Companies must work mobile job application optimization into their growth strategies or risk losing potential employees to companies with easier-to-use mobile job applications. If your mobile job applications are tedious, slow, or non-functional, job seekers are unlikely to click the “apply here” button.

Streamline Mobile Job Application Content

Eighty percent of prospective candidates quit filling out a job application form before reaching the end. But the story for mobile job applications is even worse: Only 1.5% of candidates will complete a full job application on a mobile device.

This signals that there are various user experience (UX) problems related to mobile job application content:

They’re too long for users to complete on a mobile device.

The forms often span multiple pages, making navigation difficult.

Applications often require resume document uploads, which is often impractical from a mobile user perspective.

All this to say: mobile job application processes are often not optimized for mobile devices themselves.

According to Gartner, “…easy, consistent user cues and process transparency will be important to the candidate,” and it’s vital that companies ensure that “content and experiences are consistent, and elements flow with no dead end” (full content available to clients).

Basically, if there’s an option to apply on mobile, job seekers expect the mobile job application process to be seamless and easy to complete.

Here are some ways that you can optimize your mobile job application content:

Use fewer fields. A reduced number of fields for the candidate to fill out will likely increase the number of applicants. Remember, active job seekers suffer from “job search fatigue,” so only include fields that are absolutely essential.

Bonus tip: Try to reduce the number of “required” fields for applicants to fill out to boost click-to-apply (CTA) rates.

Don’t make the candidate submit duplicate content. A recent experiment revealed that 40% of online applications require candidates to rewrite their resume after they’ve already uploaded a document version of their resume. If you do require a resume upload, make sure your applicant tracking system has resume parsing functionality, and remind candidates to submit their resumes in text or PDF format.

HireCentric mobile resume upload

HireCentric‘s mobile resume upload functionality (Source)

Many applicant tracking systems can help with the balance between collecting candidate data and overloading the applicant with long-winded applications. HireCentric lets users customize mobile job applications to suit individual companies and enables them to upload resumes using DropBox and Google Drive.

Lay Out Information Clearly and Seamlessly

Job seekers are generally frustrated with the state of mobile job applications. Not only do they encounter content that won’t display, they also have to deal with entering large amounts of information on a significantly smaller device.

job seeker problems with mobile job applications

Breakdown of issues encountered with mobile job applications (Source)

The issue with many mobile job application forms is that they haven’t been condensed enough for mobile devices. Mobile job applications should be designed to be much easier and quicker to fill out given the nature of the device they’re displayed on.

When designing a mobile job application form, the user’s experience should be at the forefront of its development. Here are the steps you should be taking to developing a mobile-friendly job application process:

First, test out your mobile job application process as it stands. Is it navigable? Are the required steps clear? Do you need to pinch or zoom in on the screen to be able to read the text? Do you ask for duplicate content at any point?

Count how many pages there are in the application process. If there are more than four, you’re likely to experience a high applicant drop off rate.

Does the whole form flow seamlessly, with zero glitches? (e.g. does it take the user out of the form, without saving information?)

For the optimum user experience, a mobile job application should be limited to four pages, which includes the following information:

mobile job application flow checklist

Put the Candidate at the Forefront of Mobile Job Applications

The importance of a good user and candidate experience cannot be underestimated. The number of job seekers using mobile to search and apply for jobs is only increasing, and organizations that don’t delight the user will lose potential top candidates to competitors.

According to Gartner, if your job application process is flawed, candidates will view this experience as a reflection of your company culture, innovation, and work style. The bottom line is that you’re risking both damage to your reputation and the loss of qualified candidates.

Your mobile job applications need to be clear, concise and convenient. Applicant tracking systems can help you customize your own mobile job application processes so that candidates can apply easily and quickly.

To get more info about which applicant tracking system is best for you, call (844) 689-4876 for a free 15-minute consultation and our software advisors can deliver a shortlist of systems that include the functionality you need.


Note: The information contained in this article has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable. The applications selected are examples to show a feature in context, and are not intended as endorsements or recommendations.

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