How Conversational Marketing Principles Can Be Applied to Recruitment

Recruiting Tools

Conversational Marketing is a proactive way of engaging with customers, online interactions via two-way conversation to better address the needs of customers and offer positive solutions. With this kind of marketing, you’re on-hand to help, precisely when the customer needs you. Today’s guest, Mike Seidle, CEO and Co-Founder of WorkHere, shares with us how conversational recruiting tools can help make the recruitment processes more engaging, and can produce better results than a traditional qualification process. Here, he explains:

  • The challenges of recruitment;
  • Why texting is such a vital tool;
  • How this kind of engagement can improve the candidate experience and drive efficiency; and
  • How Conversational Recruitment can reduce time-to-hire from months to weeks to days!

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Challenges of Recruitment

  • For companies, simply getting a candidate to begin engaging and talking with you can be a struggle. 
    • Even when reaching out via email or phone call, employers can often have difficulty getting in touch with candidates and fostering a meaningful conversation. 
    • This has become increasingly prevalent as the labor market has gotten tighter over the past few years.
  • For candidates, the application and job seeking process can be daunting.
    • One of the things that makes the process scary is that candidates fill out applications and forms and then do not receive any sort of response until maybe even months down the road.
  • Conversational marketing used as a recruiting tool  or “conversational recruiting” really helps solve the job seeker “black hole” and allows constant communication between employer and job seeker throughout every step of the process. 
  • With conversational recruiting tools, even if a candidate does not get offered the job, they will often still rate their recruitment experience highly due to the constant communication and feedback conversational recruiting provides. 
  • Fixing the “black hole of recruiting” issue will also help to boost employer brand and employee satisfaction rates due to the great recruitment and onboarding experience. 


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Challenges HR Professionals Face

  • Most recruiters spend up to 80% of their week screening candidates. 
  • By engaging with a candidate right when they apply for a job and connecting them with a live human, those initial screening questions can be asked and in turn can shave 60-80% off the typical workload for HR professionals in the recruitment process. 
  • This also allows for recruiters to only focus on the engaged candidates who are right for the job. 

Benefits Of Conversational Recruiting Tools

  • One of the most noticeable boosts conversational recruiting tools can bring to an employer is a reduction in the overall time-to-hire.
    • Employers can take their time-to-hire from months to weeks to days to hours. 
    • When employers do not have to wait for an email response or a return phone call, the time it takes to get a candidate hired is reduced drastically. 
  • About 13.1% of job applicants on job boards have inaccurate information on their profile, which causes the ATS (applicant tracking system) to sort that candidate out.
    • With a real person utilizing conversational recruiting tools, the recruiter can quickly reach out to that candidate and confirm or update that inaccurate information directly. 

Texting As A Recruiting Tool

  • Texting is a vital tool, allowing contact with candidates quickly and often.
  • Unlike email and phone calls, messages sent via text are received and read very often. According to Mr. Seidle, 91% of text messages read within three minutes of when they were received.
  • People tend to respond to text messages much more often than email or other forms of communication.
  • Sending questions instead of links to a recruitment page are a great way to get people to respond and get more accurate information from candidates.

Legal Implications When Using Texting As A Recruiting Tool

  • The first and one of the most important legal rules for recruiters is that they are not allowed to text candidates if they do not have permission to do so from the candidate. 
    • An opt-in is required, which can be on the application or elsewhere.
  • Similarly, an opt-out must be given to the candidate at the beginning of the conversation - the earlier the opt-out is sent, the better.
  • Finally, once a candidate opts out of that conversation, the recruiter must stop sending text messages to that candidate. 
  • The legal repercussions of breaking these rules are actually even more stringent than the rules for recruitment emails.

Technology Advancements and Conversational Barriers

  • There is a large amount of reluctance from candidates to work with AI and “bots.”
  • There is research from Pew that states 73% of people do not want to talk to a chat bot. 
  • The sooner recruiters can get human-to-human interaction, the better the experience will be for both parties. 

Assessing Candidates

  • The first level of engagement for a candidate will be having a conversation with the recruiter. 
  • Even with a job board like Indeed, 20-30% of candidates will not respond to the first message even if they apply for the job themselves. 
  • There is a large number of candidates who are not willing to engage. 
  • By weeding those people out, recruiters save time and can move onto candidates that are responsive. 
  • Asking a mix of subjective and objective questions allows the recruiter to get a better understanding of the candidate as a person rather than just another number on a list of candidates.

Training Employees For Live Chat Roles

  • WorkHere utilizes two different types of training.
    • The first is training recruiters how to use the chat function and the second is training the chat team to effectively communicate with customers.
  • The training that they do starts with basic customer service skills like empathy and humor.
  • They spend a good amount of time drafting the scripts and different conversational paths that could occur and are always analyzing which questions are effective and which are not when trying to connect with people.


  • At the most simple level, WorkHere provides chat for recruiting. 
    • They offer software that can be applied to a company website that allows every interaction in the recruiting process be direct to a live human through a chat function. 
      • That person could be an employee from the company itself or it could be outsourced to someone from WorkHere.
  • WorkHere specializes in orchestrating the conversational recruitment process.
    • “We go from apply to ‘hi’, and then from ‘hi’ to hired!”


  • PivotCX is the name of the conversational recruiting tool WorkHere uses.
  • This software is simply hooked up to whatever website or database a company receives their candidates and applications from and a conversation can begin with candidates from there. 

Chat Screening

  • The specific criteria that the chat can screen out candidates with is almost always determined by the client. 
    • There are a small number of instances in which the screening process will work automatically (If a candidate were to text an illicit picture to the recruiter for example), but most screening criteria is set by the client.
  • These criteria are going to be what are important to the employer and what they look for in their employees. 

PivotCX As A Recruiting Tool For College Admissions

  • PivotCX is actually used for college admissions screening as well.
  • In this space, the chat was used more for selling than screening.
  • This allows for colleges to have a more personal and interactive experience with prospective students. 

Mike Seidle Background

  • BS in Political Science from Ball State University
  • NA (National Accreditation) in Nuclear Engineering & Propulsion from the Naval Nuclear Power Training Command
  • Mr. Seidle has extensive experience in digital & conversational marketing working previously for companies such as DirectEmployers Association, Differential, Virtual Payment Systems (VPS), and more. 
  • He now is the CEO and Cofounder of WorkHere.


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