Get Rewarded for Referrals
February 13, 2018
Software Advice Names ATS OnDemand in FrontRunners Quadrant for Applicant Tracking Software
February 28, 2018
Show all

Is Attention Span Killing Your Candidate Flow?

Have you noticed the amount of candidates applying for jobs is lacking?  Although there could be several possibilities, two simple reasons may be due to long job descriptions and tedious apply processes which are kryptonite for short attention spans.  Attention span measures the length of time a person can maintain concentration or interest.  A recent study suggests that today, people lose concentration within 8 seconds, compared to gold fish (9 seconds).  That’s not to say this applies to everyone, however optimizing job listings to grab the reader’s attention while providing a seamless apply process could be the solution to boosting candidate flow and hiring people faster.

Have a Marketer Mindset

When writing job descriptions, you essentially become a marketer. Marketing is about grabbing the attention of a particular audience and pushing them towards an action.  In this case, you want qualified candidates to apply for jobs. Keep your prospects engaged by writing career content that resonates with their qualifications and values. Sell the position and highlight unique aspects that can prove why it’s absolutely awesome to work for your company.  Include employee testimonials, company milestones, and other data that will solidify your points and attract quality, long-term talent.

Use Quick Apply & Brief Descriptions For Short Attention Spans

In the modern age of social media and blog posts, the attention span of readers has declined significantly.  Attention span has decreased by over 50% in the last decade.  This not only affects millennials but older generations too.  In addition, 74% of candidates who actually begin the apply process won’t finish.  This could be due to confusing or tedious apply processes that contribute to candidate drop off, while storybook-length job descriptions could stop them at the gate.

attention span


Write short and sweet job descriptions while providing valuable information you know applicants are looking for.   Use bullet points to identify key elements such as benefits and skill requirements to organize text that is easy to read.  Summarize expectations, company values, growth opportunities, and other important information in brief paragraphs; yet maintain value that sets your company apart from the competition.  When it comes to the apply process, companies may have differing preferences in terms of what data applications capture.  When possible, use a short apply process that collects basic information and allows for document uploads.  If you are using an Applicant Tracking System (ATS), chances are you can add prescreening questions that will disposition candidates based on their responses.  You can then send assessments and follow-up applications to your top candidates while keeping less qualified applicants in your talent pool for future consideration.  Not only will this save time for the recruiter, but it will be a positive experience for candidates and everyone involved overall.