5 Strategies to Improve Your Hourly Hiring Process

There’s no arguing that hourly hiring is hard. In fact, it may be more challenging than ever since the pandemic has turned the labor market upside down. You and your hiring teams are likely spending most of your time trying to fill empty shifts and find the right people. 

And in today’s world, it’s no longer just a matter of running a little short-handed. It’s a matter of running a lot short-handed and even having enough staff to keep your doors open for regular business hours. Because of this whirlwind, many businesses have ditched looking for quality people and have just started searching for people—whoever they can find. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

You don’t need to sacrifice quality – it still exists, and it is possible to find enough hourly hires and the right hourly hires. Putting some best practices in place around your hiring and recruitment process will help. We’ve listed five below, and the good news is they can be implemented quickly.

Five Strategies to Improve Your Hourly Hiring Process:

1. Clear Job Descriptions

The market has flipped from an employer’s market to a candidate’s market. And there are multitudes of candidates out there, which means you are competing with several companies for a candidate’s attention. Ensure your job description is clear, simple, direct, and informative. Have it convey a fun/passionate reason why candidates should take the time to apply to your organization. Include things like what makes you different or the best place to work for them? Explain what your business offers its employees, not just what you expect from them.

Do your homework on keywords your target candidates use to search for job searches. Place the keywords in your job description using optimization best practices. This ensures your job requisition will show up in search rankings above your competitors.

2. Quick and Easy Application Process

Make your application process quick and easy to complete. Almost 40 percent of hourly hires state that quickly obtaining a job is their highest priority. Candidates consistently rank it above compensation and benefits when job searching.

To compete for candidates in today’s tough labor market, you have to make your application process easy and convenient for them. You will need tools that automate your application and allow candidates to apply on their mobile devices.

The average job seeker applies to at least three jobs simultaneously, looking to obtain employment as quickly as possible. Use an application process or workflow for your hourly hiring process. The initial application for an hourly position should take less than five minutes to complete. If your process is longer than this, a significant number of candidates will drop out. To help keep timing at a decent time require candidates to provide basic information only.

Everyone uses mobile phones today, including job candidates. They want to search and apply for jobs immediately – no matter their location or time of day. This means you need to ensure that your recruitment process is optimized for mobile devices, including your application process. Choose technology that uses chatbots and automates communications to keep candidates engaged and moving through the process efficiently and quickly.

3. Text-based Communications

Leverage texting. It is likely that the best candidates for your positions already work in a similar job. Because most hourly employees do not have access to a desktop computer at work, they’re more readily available by text and phone rather than email. 

Use a simple texting program like Text Apply to make it easy for candidates to contact you. This type of software allows candidates to text a specific number to apply for jobs with your organization. When they text the number, a chatbot immediately engages, captures their data, and walks them through creating a candidate profile or completing a short application. 

You need to reach and engage with as many candidates as possible to fill hourly positions. So get your “apply-to-number” out there! Use every means possible to advertise the number (even your current customers). Let everyone know you are hiring and that applying takes minutes or less. Let candidates know they can text a short number for more information on current job opportunities. 

Once candidates show interest, don’t lose them! Keep communications and engagement going with automated text messaging and campaigns. This ensures candidates don’t fall through the cracks. And makes it easy for them to advance through your recruitment process. Automating texting will save both candidates and hiring teams time by reducing the back and forth of emails and phone calls.

4. Video Interviewing

If you are not yet taking advantage of video interviewing, start now. As I mentioned earlier, your ideal candidate is likely working in a similar job. As much as they would like to interview for your position, they probably cannot take time off for an interview. Frankly, they probably do not have the time to exchange emails with a recruiter trying to agree on a mutually agreeable day, time, and place either.

Use a video interviewing solution that allows candidates to complete their interview at their convenience – whenever and wherever they choose. Think of the time (not to mention the stress) that you will save not having to go back and forth trying to schedule in-person interviews. Candidates appreciate this flexibility, and it improves their experience. Hiring teams can view recorded video interviews on their own schedule. Ultimately, this flexibility will help you hire high-quality candidates in an expedited fashion. 

Interviewing fewer candidates is the most effective way to reduce the time your teams spend in the hiring process.Interviewing all applicants in person is a waste of time for hiring teams and candidates. Video interviewing is cost-effective and time effective.

Managers and recruiters should only invest time interviewing high-quality candidates in person.

5. Employee Referral Program

Time and time again, the studies show the best source of quality candidates are referrals from your current employees. A well-run employee referral program can save significant time and money while getting you the very best candidates.

No one knows better than your current employees what working for your organization is like. They know your culture, processes, and which skills are needed to succeed. They can identify and recommend friends and acquaintances that will be a good fit for your company.

Ensure the success of your program by using technology that is automated and optimized for mobile devices and texting. Set perimeters for your employee referral program. Only pay employee referral fees after new hires have successfully completed a set term of employment or other goals.

Your employee referral program must be easy for employees and applicants to use. And, it should not cause more administrative work for human resources. 

Wrap Up

These five strategies are some of the easiest ways to improve your hourly hiring process and find candidates fast. By implementing one or more of these strategies, you’ll reach more job seekers – active and passive. Applications and candidate quality should increase, and you’ll be able to hire the best candidates for your business.

If you're not using data analytics in your hiring process, Cadient offers technology that easily integrates with your current ATS. Data-driven hiring decisions will help you hire a highly-qualified diverse workforce. Contact us now to learn more.


Before you go, browse our recruiting and talent acquisition resources.


Tom Bright