Recruiting, Technology

Downsides to Candidates Using Recruiting Apps

In the ever-changing mobile technology landscape, mobile recruiting options keep growing. More and more organizations are finding they need to ensure their job posts are accessible on the apps jobseekers use to get enough applicants. Of course, there are pros and cons with jobseekers’ utilizing the most common recruiting apps. Let’s take a look at some of these.


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First, we’ll start with the upsides for employers utilizing mobile recruiting apps in their recruitment, which include:

  • Pushing job posts to sites that use mobile apps will likely mean you get a lot more applicants because the apps make it easy to apply.
  • People who are ready to start right away often send out many applications, which means you’ll have a higher number of people available to interview right away and will possibly be able to get started quickly.
  • Recruiting apps often give the employer access to information about candidates, making it easy to see their résumé and more.
  • The process may move faster because most people keep their phones handy all day, which means they can respond quickly to queries. This is a big contrast to queries that have to be completed via an online portal, which is often easier to access on a computer, thus taking longer and putting a roadblock in the process.
  • Apps can make it easy for candidates to stay updated on their progress. For example, they can often see when their application has been viewed and thus will be less likely to reach out for an update.

That said, let’s take a look at the downsides to using recruiting apps, which can be substantial. Here are a few:

  • Hiring apps make it almost too easy to apply. This is great for candidates because it’s convenient to apply for dozens of jobs. However, it may be too easy—people are applying to everything in just a few clicks and may not even remember (or truly be interested in) your job when you call them for an interview. This can waste a lot of time in the long run, even if it’s theoretically saving candidate time early in the process. Candidates are more likely to apply for and even interview for a job they really didn’t look into and may not actually want in the end.
  • Employers have to act even faster than before because applicants have lots of jobs at their fingertips and are less likely to be available if you wait. When there’s already a talent shortage, this can be incredibly frustrating for employers.
  • Applicants will have little patience for a process that isn’t short and simple. This may mean more quality applicants are lost along the way. Forms need to be kept very short, and answers to questions should be “clickable” whenever possible. Keep the need for long responses to a minimum if you want to keep people on mobile devices interested.
  • The ease of application may end up making it easier to leave a job, too, simply because it’s easier to search for the next one. This may mean higher turnover in the years to come.
  • There may be costs involved for the candidate in the form of data usage or texting, as not all phone plans have unlimited amounts of both of these. This might mean some applicants won’t find you if this is your primary form of recruitment.
  • If this is your primary form of recruitment, it may also inadvertently discriminate based on age, as people who didn’t grow up with mobile phones are less likely to be comfortable using them for this purpose.

What has your experience been with recruiting apps? What would you add to this list?

Bridget Miller is a business consultant with a specialized MBA in International Economics and Management, which provides a unique perspective on business challenges. She’s been working in the corporate world for over 15 years, with experience across multiple diverse departments including HR, sales, marketing, IT, commercial development, and training.