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Recruiting Contact: Are Texts or Calls the Best Recruiting Messages?

by | Feb 17, 2022 | Placement Process

You’ve probably been through this. You call a job candidate and get no answer. So you leave a voicemail message. And then you call again and they don’t answer again. And you leave another message. So you call back again with the same result. What the heck is going on? Why are they not responding to your recruiting contact efforts?

What’s going on is that it’s more difficult to connect with job candidates than ever. It’s especially difficult when they’re passive candidates who are not engaged in an active job search. During the past several years, communicating via instant messenger and texting has become more popular.

Don’t feel badly, though. Some people don’t answer the phone even if they know the person on the other end of the line.

Recruiting contact via a call to candidates

From the perspective of a recruiter or Human Resources professional, though, making recruiting contact through calls is better. Let’s clarify that. They’re better for the recruiter or Human Resources professional, that is. And they’re better in the following three ways:

#1—More information

When a candidate picks up the phone, you have the chance to gather more information more quickly. With instant messaging or texting, there is a natural throttle on information flow. So recruiting calls can be quicker and more efficient.

#2—Better selling opportunity

As a recruiter or HR professional, you’re attempting to sell the candidate on a job opportunity. (Of course, you want to address their WIIFM—What’s In It For Them.) A phone call affords you the opportunity to do that more easily and completely.

#3—Better human connection

A phone call and the chance to talk directly with another person offers the opportunity for a better human connection. You can hear each other’s voice, their inflections, their mood, etc. When you make a connection, it’s easier to keep the candidate engaged and candidate engagement is critical.

Despite the perceived benefits of recruiting calls, though, texting and messaging are becoming more popular.

Why texts are the best recruiting messages

There’s what the recruiter or HR professional wants . . . and then there’s what the job candidate wants. And in a candidate-driven market during a talent shortage, what job candidates want carries a lot of weight. In fact, it often carries more weight than what employers want.

With that in mind, below are three reasons why candidates prefer messaging and texting over recruiter calls:

#1—They’re less intrusive.

Job candidates typically consider a phone call to be intrusive and not considerate of their time. They don’t have to stop everything they’re doing to answer the call. More importantly, texts send the message (no pun intended) that the recruiter values the candidate’s time. The recruiter is not implying that their time is more important than the candidate’s. This is something the candidate appreciates.

#2—The candidate maintains control of the conversation.

During a phone call, control of the conversation can be easily lost. Not so during a text message. These days, job candidates already have the leverage in a hiring situation. Text messaging provides them with control, as well.

They can take their time to read the text or message. Then they can think about how they want to respond and respond at their leisure. You can see why this type of situation is more appealing to them.

#3—They’re more personal.

Yes, even though you can make a quicker human connection over the phone, candidates (especially younger ones) prefer texting for this reason. Think about it. By texting, you send the message that the candidate’s time is important and you’re allowing them to have control of the conversation. From the candidate’s perspective, that starts the communication on more personal footing.

And once again, if it’s important to job candidates . . .

Recruiting contact: templates for texting

Just like there are templates for email, there are also templates for texting. The idea with templates is the same: to help automate the process and save more time. However, you also want to maintain the personal feel. That’s why the construction of the templates is so important.

Just as there are different situations for calling job candidates, there are also different situations for texting them. Not only that, but the situations mirror each other. For example, instead of calling a candidate about a job opportunity, you can text them. Instead of calling a candidate to remind them about an interview, you can text them.

As a result, each situation or instance requires a separate template. Once again, the goal of the template is to ensure communication, save time, and maintain whatever personal touch you’ve established to that point. If created and executed correctly, templates will not sacrifice any one of these areas.

Considerations for sending the best recruiting messages

Below are three considerations when creating texting templates for job candidates:


This is a text, not an email. Space is at a premium. Keep it brief and include only the most important information. Be direct, to the point, and concise, all while being crystal-clear in your communication.


While preference is a factor here, your tone should match your organization’s brand. If possible, strike a friendly and non-threatening or intimidating tone. You want to be professional, but you don’t want to be dull or boring, either. The proper tone can help drive effective engagement.

#3—Call-to-action (CTA)

There is always something you want the candidate to do? Make sure that they know what that is by including a call-to-action. You want your CTA to be strong and clear, but you also don’t want to come across as demanding. This is another reason why tone and context are important.

One final tip: make sure that the templates are being used company-wide so that nobody goes “rogue” with a candidate.

Send good recruiting messages with your ATS

Now, more than ever, it’s critical that your recruiting contact efforts are paying off. Top Echelon offers a powerful and intuitive applicant tracking system (ATS) with a polished and refined CRM. Our recruiting software includes a texting feature that allows you to engage with top job candidates at any point in the recruiting and hiring process.

Top Echelon Software’s text messaging service allows users to subscribe to a dedicated phone number—or multiple phone numbers. Then you can text candidates while inside the software. In addition, outgoing messages are logged as Activities to the corresponding person’s record. Not only that, but reply texts are logged in the software, as well.

Enhance your recruiting contact efforts and get better results. See more of Top Echelon’s best recruiting software features for additional ways to source, recruit, and hire top job candidates!

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