Manage a High Volume of Applications

How to Successfully Manage a High Volume of Applications

Your recruitment advertising campaign seems to be going well and applications are beginning to flood in.

Whilst a large selection of candidates to choose from is no doubt a positive thing, small HR functions can often struggle with the administration associated with a high volume of CVs.

Some customer service, administration, entry level and graduate roles can typically draw a large number of applications and, while you want to assess all candidates, you might find it challenging to work through all these applications.

And it’s not just a case of needing the time to assess the applications – what about the time it takes to contact candidates to say they’re being progressed or their submission was unsuccessful?

A lack of communication or even acknowledgement from employers can make for a poor candidate experience and can leave applicants with a negative impression of your business.

So, what’s the best way of handling a large volume of applications that doesn’t come at the expense of the candidate experience or your precious time? Webrecruit takes a look at three great ways of managing a large volume of applications:


1. Try taking advantage of recruitment software

Recruitment software can be incredibly useful when it comes to managing a high volume of applications. And don’t worry, you don’t need access to the most advanced system; basic recruitment software will have the functionality to make your CV sifting much easier.

Firstly, when all applications are coming straight into your inbox, it can be easy to miss a couple. With recruitment software, all applications are made via an applicant tracking system (ATS), which logs applicants within a separate portal.

Within this portal, you can sort all incoming applicants into individual pots, titled ‘To be Reviewed’, ‘Rejected’ or ‘Shortlisted’ – this allows you to keep on top of the response that your vacancy has received and you’ll know exactly what stage each candidate is at.

Another benefit of recruitment software, such as Webrecruit ATS, is the ability to generate automated emails to candidates.

When marking an application as successful or unsuccessful, an email will be triggered to candidates. This ensures that each applicant knows where they stand and is kept informed, which reinforces your employer brand.

Interested in learning about Webrecruit ATS? Find out more.


2. Think about outsourcing the filtering of CVs

When your vacancy is receiving a large response, it can be frustrating when a high percentage of these candidates are not suitable for the role. Perhaps they don’t live within a reasonable distance of where the role is based (and are unwilling to relocate) or perhaps they don’t hold the basic criteria that you’ve asked candidates to have.

If you find this stage of CV filtering to be time consuming, why not try outsourcing this task?

As part of our advertising package, Webrecruit offers a CV filtering service where our team assesses all incoming applications and presents our clients with shortlist of suitably qualified candidates, ready to be assessed internally and interviewed (if appropriate).

This is a great idea if you’re looking to remain in control of your recruitment but want to free up some of your time spent handling those annoying administrative tasks.


3. Make sure that your job adverts are targeted at the right people

A large quantity of applications doesn’t always mean that the quality of candidates will be high. So, if you’re consistently finding that a very small percentage of your applications are relevant, think about what you can do to improve the quality of your response.

Focus on targeting your recruitment advertising campaigns. After all, a campaign that delivers you just 10 candidates but they’re all of a superb quality is much better than having to wade through hundreds of applications to find one strong candidate.

A good place to start is with your job advert. When creating your advertisement, make sure that the essential requirements of the role are clear. It’s important to use language such as ‘candidates must have’ rather than ‘the ideal candidate will have’.

If you choose to include no essential criteria in the advert but, realistically, won’t look at anyone who doesn’t hold a degree, expect to be inundated with candidates who don’t hold a degree. Make clear what you want so you don’t waste candidates’ time, or your own.

You should also focus on targeting your adverts from start to finish. For instance, near the top of the advert, you could include a sentence stating:

“This is the perfect opportunity for an experienced customer service professional looking to take their next step into a management role.”

The above sentence makes it clear that the business is looking for someone with strong customer service background looking to move into a management position.

Also, think about what advertising sources you should be using. Conduct some research to find out where your targeted group of candidates tend to look for new jobs.

Even though you can’t control who exactly applies for your vacancies, try to do all that you can to target the role to the right people. This will increase your chance of making a successful hire.


Struggling to manage your high volume of applications? Request a call and find out more about Webrecruit’s response management and volume recruitment services.


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