Matt Singer, VP of Marketing at Jobvite, discusses the company’s focus on best-of-breed recruiting software, including how they handle social and trends toward mobile and predictive analytics. Singer also talks about the “recruiting funnel,” methods for building the talent pipeline, and the increasing importance of recruitment marketing to build interest in a company’s brand. According to user ratings on TrustRadius, Jobvite was a Top Rated recruiting product for mid-sized companies in 2015.
Introduction to Jobvite
Give us a brief overview of Jobvite, who you are and what you offer.
Jobvite is a top-to-bottom recruiting platform; recruiting is all we have ever done and all we ever plan to do. We view recruiting as a funnel with passive candidates at the top and onboarding at the bottom, with reporting and analytics to optimize every step of the recruiting lifecycle over time. We have products for each step of the funnel.
Deep Focus on Recruiting
Why has Jobvite chosen to be a recruitment-only platform instead of adding functionalities for different aspects of HR?
It starts with our CEO, Dan Finnigan, who is a big believer in the idea that there are two parts to HR: the personnel department, which is focused on existing employees and handling the back-office, and recruiters, who are more like salespeople. We think that the difference between the two is strong enough that it has led to two sets of buyers.
Integration within an HR suite is really important on the personnel side; having a learning management system talking to the performance system and payroll system is necessary. The only reason why it would be valuable to integrate recruiting into those processes is to have the data of a new hire feed into an HRIS. The value of that integration is marginal in comparison with the value in having a best-of-breed application in which the vendor is entirely focused on recruiting. Because 70% of the operating expense of a company is spent on people, finding good people is paramount to clients, and that’s why we have chosen to focus on recruiting.
What is your unique approach to recruiting?
Within the best-of-breed recruiting applications, we’re in the sweet spot. There are a lot of big companies that have more of an Excel-based UI; these companies are more interested in back-office automation of the recruiting processes. In contrast, new vendors are more focused on collaboration between the hiring manager and the recruiter and a slick UI, but they don’t have the architecture or experience to really cater to the broader market.
Jobvite is a perfect mix between the two; we’ve been around for ten years, and we have thousands of customers. We have rewritten the code and UI, and we’re the first recruiting company to launch a mobile app. Jobvite has the agility, UI, and collaboration tools that newer companies have, with the stability and reliability of older companies.
The Talent Pipeline: Social Recruiting and CRM
What can you tell us about the importance of social media within the Jobvite recruiting platform?
I think that is definitely part of our legacy brand. We were the first to do social job distribution, which is how we got our name. We automate that process through Jobvite Publisher; when a company posts a job, an automatic post is sent from all employees who have connected their social media accounts to our platform. This gives users the network effect along with driving referral employees. We have found that referred employees are the best kinds of hires to make because they tend to stay longer, perform better, and the time to hire is faster.
That being said, social recruiting has become standard, and everyone is doing it in some capacity. We’re going to continue to implement that and be leaders on social recruiting. Now, it’s more of a focus on the top of the funnel, gathering the passive candidates and building talent pipelines with millennials. New product development is focused both on the talent pipelines at the top of the funnel and collaboration between hiring managers and recruiters.
One pain point is getting that interaction between hiring managers and recruiters. They need a tool that makes it easier for talent managers to know when they need to be at interviews, easily give feedback for those interviews, and keep the candidates moving through the pipelines and workflows. We launched a mobile app and new UI in 2013 with these aspects as the primary focus.
What features does Jobvite have for the top of the funnel recruiting processes?
We have a CRM, which is built as a sort of Marketo for recruiters. We see that in two sides: first, recruitment marketing, which is for a company’s brand. We were the first to launch native mobile career sites along with the ability to purchase premium mobile career sites for a more customizable look and feel.
The other side is the talent pipeline and building the flow of passive candidates through outbound marketing. We think about it as “push and pull” marketing: we’ve got the pull marketing with the branded career sites, and we also emphasize the need to push that message out. Our CRM tool gives customers the ability to run outbound email campaigns, social campaigns, and web campaigns.
Our Work With Us app helps us to source lists to help customers identify passive candidates. People enter their email, which does not apply for a specific job but rather indicates general interest in the company. Once they are in the CRM, we use tagging and keyword functionalities to help users run targeted campaigns.
Trends Toward Mobile and Predictive Analytics
What do you think are the major trends in 2016 in the recruitment space?
There are two major trends to watch: predictive analytics and mobile functionality.
We’ve done mobile, it’s launched, and we are the first comprehensive hiring manager app.
On predictive analytics, we have some stuff coming for next year. Companies need a ton of data for predictive to work; for newer vendors, they might have the brainpower to build effective models, but they don’t have the data points. We have had 50 million job seekers come through our platform, and we’ve filled hundreds of thousands of recs over the year. In B2B, it’s very difficult to gather that mass of data.
We have a team of PhDs and data scientists focused entirely on building out our predictive capabilities. We already have benchmark data across the whole platform to provide information about what the funnel looks like for recruiters to give them a general idea and point of comparison, but we’re going to be getting into predictive analytics based on a user’s metropolitan area and the role they are trying to fill. We expect our first predictive analytics offering to be out next year, and we’ll launch a handful over the rest of 2016.