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10 Text Messages to Send: Candidates & Contractors

Posted by
Alexandra Kane
September 8, 2023

Talent spends much of the day on their phones. We all do. Research shows that we check our phones upwards of 80 times a day. With candidate (and even client) ghosting an increasingly problematic issue and recruiter resources maxed out, text recruiting is an excellent way to nurture relationships, save time and ultimately, drive ROI for your staffing firm.

Texting both clients and candidates is a powerful way to nurture relationships and drive revenue. We’ll talk about client texts in a future post.

But in the meantime, what makes sense to text candidates, anyway? Allow us to share some inspiration... 

1. Onboarding paperwork

We could all use fewer papers on our desk, right? And candidates aren’t exactly fond of completing old-fashioned paperwork either.

Your onboarding paperwork should be online nowadays. Even a simple Google Form can be used for candidates to submit necessary information.

Increase the likelihood candidates complete their onboarding paperwork ahead of time (and keep excess papers off your desk) by texting talent a link to complete it on their phones.

Bonus for candidates? It’s one less thing they need to bring to their interview or a meeting. For you? Less paper on your desk, less time waiting around for a candidate to complete it in your office.

Be sure your onboarding documents are simple and easy to complete on a mobile device ahead of time, though, or this could backfire!

Here’s a sample onboarding paperwork text:

Hi [CANDIDATE FIRST NAME], here’s a link to our onboarding form. Taking a few minutes to finish it beforehand can save you a ton of time in the office (and save 🌳🌳). LMK if you have any questions - thanks! [LINK]


2. Directions to the interview 🚘

We’re all super busy, and your candidates are no exception. Depending on the specific time, sending a quick text the afternoon before or morning of an interview with directions can be super helpful. Include a Google Maps link, and you might even be your candidate’s hero that day.

TIP: Remember to keep texts short and sweet. Something along the lines of:

Hey [CANDIDATE FIRST NAME], good luck on your interview with [CLIENT] today! In case you need them, here are directions to [CLIENT ADDRESS]. [GOOGLE MAPS URL]


3. Interview check-in ✏️

Playing the waiting game between when a candidate interviews and when you hear from the client can be maddening for recruiters—especially when you’re excited about a particular candidate.

Rather than sit and anxiously await an email or call from the client, sending out quick texts to candidates will not only put your mind at ease, it will help you build even stronger relationships with your candidates.

Here’s an example:

Hi [CANDIDATE FIRST NAME], how did it go today at [CLIENT]? I’ll follow up with you on [DATE], unless I hear from the client sooner. If you need anything in the meantime, just let me know 👍


4. First day check-in 📆

The first day at a new job can feel a lot like the first day of school. A little pep talk text from their recruiter can help ease candidates’ nerves and get them off to a good start.

It can also help prevent ghosting and ensure candidates are on-time and eager to get started at their new gigs.

Need some inspiration?

Hey [CANDIDATE FIRST NAME], today’s the big day! As a reminder, you’ll ask for [NAME] when you arrive at [TIME]. Have a great day! 👊


5. Mid-placement check-in 🗓️

Once candidates are in the thick of things on their placements, they may be so into the routines at their new gig, they forget about their recruiters a bit. But, this is also when many candidates have questions, feedback about a client or assignment, and other needs that should be addressed.

Addressing them while the candidate is still on a placement can increase the likelihood of redeployment, increase contractor happiness and even lead to more referrals.

Here’s a quick example:

Hey [CANDIDATE FIRST NAME], How are things at [CLIENT]? I’m still here if you have any questions or need anything at all during your assignment. Just let me know how I can help 👍📱


6. Post mortem ⏳

After placing candidates, it’s understandable that recruiters are often moving quickly onto the next placement (while trying to keep tabs on candidates who are onsite with clients).

But as mentioned above, touching base quickly and personably with candidates via text messages shows that you’re still available to help and are invested in their success.

A quick, post-mortem text is a nice touch to assure contractor happiness, can dramatically impact the likelihood of redeployment and as mentioned above, can even impact your ability to land quality referrals.

Start with an example like this and customize as necessary:

Hi [CANDIDATE FIRST NAME], Congrats on wrapping up your time with [CLIENT] 👏 I’d love to hear how things went and talk about your next assignment. Are you available on [DATE] for a 15-minute chat?


7. Happy anniversary! 🎉

How many dormant candidates are in your database? Hundreds? Thousands? You’re not alone. It can seem like an insurmountable challenge to regularly touch base with every candidate.

Something as short and sweet as a “Happy Anniversary” text is a great way to re-open the door to conversations and ultimately, redeployment. And for your active contractors, recognizing their anniversary working with your firm is a nice way to show them you value their contributions.

You could take this type of text in a few different directions, but here’s one simple angle:

Hey [CANDIDATE], Just touching base because today is your 1-year anniversary working with us 🥂 Happy anniversary, and thank you for all your hard work!


8. Surveys/NPS

Your NPS is essentially a public-facing measure of your success. A high NPS from Inavero (now ClearlyRated) means that your clients and/or candidates love you and you’re doing a great job.

But actually getting your clients and candidates to answer those NPS surveys can be a challenge today. We’re all busy. Where is there time to check unsolicited emails and answer surveys when we’re working on our computers? As a result, many of us get a bit...frazzled...when we see survey emails in our inboxes…

Collecting valuable NPS survey data isn’t impossible today, though. Like all communications, it’s important to reach talent (and clients) where they spend their time. And that’s on their phones.

A short text with an easy, mobile-optimized NPS survey link is much more palatable (and increases the likelihood of response).

Keep the text and “ask” simple with something like this:

Hi [CANDIDATE FIRST NAME], can you spare a minute to answer a few, short questions? Your feedback tells me whether I’m doing a good job, and I would really appreciate it [LINK]


9. Hot jobs 🔥

Whether you’re reaching out to a contractor mid-placement to line up their next role, a dormant candidate in your expansive database, or a new candidate who wasn’t quite a fit for another role, jobs are always welcome.

Let’s amend that statement—relevant jobs are always welcome.

It cannot be overstated that sending hot jobs to candidates for which they are not a fit (or are uninterested) can burn relationships. But timely outreach with relevant jobs can strengthen them (while increasing redeployment, referrals, etc).

It’s also important to note here that if you are texting hot jobs to candidates, your online application system should make it SUPER simple to apply on a mobile device. Or, based on the candidate’s response, you should be able to move the process forward without the candidate needing to re-apply (whenever possible).

If you have the systems and technology in place to send relevant jobs to candidates and move forward the application process, hot jobs texts can be an incredibly successful tool.

As with all texts, keep hot job messages short and sweet (here’s an example for a contractor whose assignment is ending soon):

Hey [CANDIDATE FIRST NAME], thinking ahead to your next gig, this [ROLE] opening could be a GREAT fit. Check it out and LMK what you think: [LINK]


10. Happy birthday 🎂

Birthday texts are universally welcomed. For recruiters, they keep you top of mind with talent. Plus, they’re just a nice thing to do.

No example needed here, right? We ALL send them 😬

Sense makes it easy for you to send texts (and reap the rewards).

“These texts sound great,” you might be thinking, “but who has the time to send them all?” With technology like Sense working with your ATS, these text messages can be crafted and sent automatically.

Whether you need to send a 1:1 text (like the first few examples in the above list) or a broadcast (like hot jobs and anniversaries), Sense makes it easy. We give you the benefit of personalized, relevant candidate texts, while subsequently giving your recruiters MORE time to work on mission-critical tasks.

Texting is a powerful way to build stronger candidate and contractor relationships. We can show you how. Schedule a demo with our team to walk through Sense and learn how it can transform your staffing firm.  

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