PAULA SANTONOCITO
PAULA SANTONOCITO, SENIOR MANAGER, RESEARCHER & WRITER

COVID-19: Changing Job Search Habits and Your Recruiting Budget

May 7, 2020 at 01:01 PM — Post

What’s happening with regard to job search? Not what you might expect.

Job postings are down. This makes sense because many companies have cut back on hiring due to the pandemic and related economic situation. Historically, there are fewer jobs during recessions.

What’s different this time is that clicks are also down, which doesn’t add up. In the past five weeks, there have been approximately 26 million new unemployment claims. This number suggests clicks should be skyrocketing. But people aren’t looking for jobs, at least not yet.

Here’s what Appcast data shows through the week of April 13.

When you remove retail and healthcare jobs from this snapshot, you get a more realistic view of the overall employment marketplace.

If you’ve been dreaming of free organic candidate traffic, because you logically presumed millions upon millions of new job seekers, forget about it.

Typically, in a recession, as supply (number of job seekers) goes up and demand (number of jobs) goes down, prices drop. However, currently, your cost-per-click (CPC) has likely stayed the same or even increased. This is because supply hasn’t increased – only potential demand has.

In addition, there’s another change that may impact your budget.

Appcast data shows that among people looking for jobs, a far greater number are using mobile.

How does this factor in?

Because mobile users do more browsing, mobile tends to result in a lower conversion rate; there are more clicks, but less applies. A lower conversion rate results in a higher cost-per-applicant (CPA), since you pay for more clicks before someone actually applies. Down the hiring funnel, this translates into increased cost per hire.

Even if “logic” tells you that in the current environment it should cost less to find candidates, the data suggests otherwise. Before you consider slashing your recruiting budget to save money, you’ll want to consider these findings.