Ultimate Guide to Text Message Recruiting in 2018 (NEW Guide)

Ultimate Guide to Text Message Recruiting in 2018 (NEW Guide)

Written by Rob Cate | 8 MIN READ

Here is our Ultimate Guide to Text Message Recruiting in 2018.  I put this guide together to provide you with a deeper understanding of the benefits and how text messaging can make a significant impact on your business.

Table of Contents

  1. What is Text Message Recruiting?
  2. Why Text Messaging is a BIG deal
  3. Easy for Job Seekers
  4. Interactive and Engaging Follow Up
  5. Text Message Interviewing and Pre-Screening
  6. Communicating with Candidates by Text
  7. Small Business or Franchise
  8. High Volume Recruiting
  9. Conclusion

What is Text Message Recruiting?

Text message recruiting utilizes text communication to streamline the hiring process. Text message communication can be automated, a two-way dialogue, or by mass communication between hiring managers and candidates. There are three main stages within the hiring process where text messaging has a significant impact.

  • Job Seeker Recruitment
  • Candidate Selection
  • Candidate Nurturing

Here are the stages in action:

text message recruiting

Job Seeker Recruitment: Hiring managers post a job and ask job seekers to text message a number. A text will be sent back to the job seeker with information on the next steps in the hiring process.

text message recruiting

Candidate Selection: Hiring managers can utilize artificial intelligence or algorithms to interview candidates with pre-set questions.

text message recruiting

Candidate Nurturing: Hiring managers communicate with one or many candidates through text messaging.

Why Text Messaging is a BIG Deal

In 2017, the Pew Research Center identified that millennials surpassed Gen Xers in 2016 as the most represented generation in the modern workforce, with 53.5 million people (Figure 1). Millenials grew up during the gradual evolution of instant messaging, texting, email, and other forms of written communication. Texting is instant, mobile, and allows users to review their responses before sending.

Easy for Job Seekers

Sending a text is easier for a job seeker than going to a Career page or sending an email. It can be done from mobile and with no internet connection. The call to action for sending a text has a much lower barrier to entry than applying or emailing. If a job seeker is dining at your restaurant and they notice a job ad, then they can show interest without interrupting your business or their dining experience.

Here is an example:

Texting also provides options for job seekers. This is why sales companies let you purchase online, call, and even chat: because they want to maximize their conversion by making it easy for buyers. Lastly and most importantly, an inbound text message from a job seeker provides you with something no website can provide you: their cell phone number.

Interactive and Engaging Follow Up

Sales and Recruiting are both equally important and are very similar; however, you rarely ever have follow up on prospective candidates. I’m sure you’ve seen retargeted products in your social media feed after browsing them online. Maybe you received a follow-up call or email from a sales rep. Today if a job seeker comes to your job post or Career’s page URL and does not convert, the job seeker is most likely lost forever. If the job seeker came in through text messaging there is now a channel of direct communication with the job seeker. Hiring managers can significantly increase conversion with interactive and engaging follow-ups, yielding more candidates to select from.

Here is an example utilizing a recruitment video:

How many more candidates could you have received with even just one follow up?

Text Message Interviewing and Pre-screening

One of the most time-consuming processes of hiring is selecting the right candidates to move forward. Hiring managers tend to shortlist job seekers from their resume and decide on a set number of job seekers for a first round phone screening. Automated Text Message interviewing identifies the best job seekers per the company’s requirements and eliminates the phone screen. Hiring managers can create interview templates and have artifical intelligence or an algorithm interview and rank candidates automatically. Hiring managers save a tremendous amount of time and resources phone screening and can make quicker hiring decisions with more information.

Here is an example of an effective text message interview template for a Ben and Jerry’s:

  1. Let’s get started. Are you legally eligible to work in the United States?
  2. Alright. Are you looking to work full time or part-time?
  3. Great. Do you have your California Food Handler’s card or certification?
  4. Okay. How many years of relevant customer service/hospitality experience do you have?
  5. Great. Do you have reliable transportation to get to work?
  6. Alright. What days and times are you available to work?
  7. Why do you want to work for Ben and Jerrys and what makes you a good candidate?
  8. Great. What does customer service mean to you?
  9. Okay. What are some of the main characteristics of ice cream and how would you “upsell” one of our items?
  10. Okay. Are you capable of being on your feet for longer than 4 hours and can you lift at least 25 lbs. at a time?
  11. Great. Do you have any management, supervisor, or leadership experience?
  12. Alright. Do you like to cook, bake, prep food? If yes, what is your favorite recipe? Why?
  13. Great. If the customer line is out the door and other servers are in the back room, what do you do?
  14. Okay. Why is important to keep our workplace clean and sanitary?
  15. Let’s say we are ready to bring you on board, when could you start and how long do you intend to work here?
  16. Alright. That’s it from us, anything else you’d like to share?

Unlike traditional job applications or ordered form lists, text messaging provides a personalized dialogue. The dialogue interview through text allows for candidates to feel engaged, review their answers before responding, interview on the go, respond at their leisure, and provide deeper more authentic responses. This specific interview template had several candidates interview over an hour.

Communicating with Candidates by Text

Hiring managers can communicate with candidates via text messaging at any stage in the hiring process through a text messaging platform. This could be a simple back and forth with one candidate or a large group. Many CRM platforms allow for template message creation. Templates are messages that are drafted in advance so hiring managers don’t need to re-write the same message over and over. For example, if you wanted to invite several candidates to an onsite, you could text the entire group with the same templated message once.

Here is an example of a template for inviting candidates onsite:

The big advantage that text communication has is speed. Hiring managers can send or receive replies much faster than e-mail or phone calls.

Small Business or Franchise

Hiring can be a challenge for smaller businesses for many reasons. Smaller businesses have smaller budgets for hiring and smaller resources to manage the process. Text message recruiting offers an opportunity for small business and franchise owners to manage the hiring process at an affordable rate.

Here is what I’ve gathered from the majority of small business and franchise owners’ communicated need:

  1. Affordable hiring
  2. As little time taken away from running their business as possible
  3. A steady flow of local, qualified candidates

Text message recruiting is capable of checking off all three boxes. Text message recruiting and interviewing costs as little as $50/month (you can try it FREE). A business owner can create interview templates per their requirements and attach those interviews to their jobs. The algorithm will interview and rank candidates per the business owner’s requirements. Lastly, one small investment in a poster or flyer will bring in local job seekers.

Here is an example of an effective flyer for a Ben and Jerry’s franchise:

One mistake many franchises or small business owners make is adding an incentive for job seekers to apply. Adding a cash incentive on a flyer or poster can help drive candidate flow. I recommend offering $100-$200 to job seekers IF they stay for at least 6 months.

High Volume Recruiting

Recruiters that are high volume have many requisitions to fill or many candidates to qualify; sometimes it’s both. If there are many requisitions, recruiters should be looking to provide multiple conversion funnels for job seekers so their pipeline is as full as possible. Following the sales approach, in the [RECRUITING] Easy for Job Seekers section, adding a text message channel provides job seekers another option to convert. If there are many candidates, automated text message interviewing and pre-screening lets job seekers interview and pre-screen when they want. Job seekers can interview in real-time and no longer have to wait for any communication back from the recruiter. Job seekers can qualify or disqualify themselves in real-time significantly speeding up the hiring process.


For businesses big and small text messaging can make a significant impact at multiple stages. Millennials have surpassed Gen Xers as being the most prominently represented generation in the modern workforce. Millenials grew up during the gradual evolution of instant messaging, texting, email, and other forms of written communication. Texting is instant and mobile, users can review their responses before sending, allowing for precise messages to be exchanged at any given time. Text message recruiting is affordable and if you’d like to try it for free, email us at sales@interviewnow.io, or call/text (415) 942-0973, or request a demo.

Rob Cate

Welcome to our blog! I'm Rob, the Founder of Interview Now. When I'm not cranking away on Interview Now, I'm out playing soccer or surfing. Thanks for checking us out!

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