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How To Use Surveys To Attract Talent

How To Use Surveys To Attract More Talent
Today I'll cover how to use surveys to attract talent. I'll share tools, questions, and tactics that will attract job seekers to your job ads and fill your applicant tracking system with new candidates. 

Why You Should Survey Your Candidates 

As recruiters, we make many assumptions about what our candidates want.  But do we ever really know?  What if there was an easy way to find out?  I like to think of the assumptions we make about our candidates as "recruiting hypotheses." 
Some Hypotheses You May Have About Your Candidates 
1. My candidates' preferred communication platform is phone or email.
2. My candidates believe text messaging comes across as unprofessional. 
3. My candidates do not want to hear from me on social media (LinkedIn and Facebook). 
What if I told you...your hypotheses are all wrong. You wouldn't believe me right? Of course not. You used these hypotheses to propel your career or even grow your own recruiting firm. Your hypotheses are more than just hypotheses at this point. You've proven they work - they've become your mental models.  But all models eventually become outdated - the Ford Model T wouldn't compete very well with a Ford Focus today.
Which one would you rather drive in a race? 
The Focus, right? Using surveys will help you figure out if your recruiting processes are a Model T or a Focus. In addition to evaluating your current processes survey data will also help you: 
  • Increase engagements with job seekers 
  • Increase the amount of applicants you get from your job ads 
  • Increase the reponse rate for your communications 


Surveys are a useful tactic that help you attract talent and convert them into new hires. Now that you know why you should surveys let's get into the how. 

What Survey Tools Should I Use? 


I recommend using either Survey Monkey or Typeform. These survey tools are great for three reasons. 
  • Their free accounts offer customization and analytics features 
  • Their surveys are mobile friendly 
  • Their software is simple to use and easy to learn 

For today's example, I'll show you how to create a survey in Survey Monkey.  

How To Survey Your Candidates In 3 Easy Steps 

Step One: Decide what questions you'd like to ask

Here's a list of 10 Survey Questions to choose from - use some or all of them.

If you think of any more I should add to this list - drop me a comment.

1. How would you like to hear from me about job opportunities? (Select in order of preference from most to least preferred.) 

  1. Facebook Messenger
  2. LinkedIn Messenger
  3. Email
  4. Phone Call
  5. Text Message
2. If you had to select just one way to get initial communications about job opportunities what would you prefer? (Select one) 
  1. Facebook Messenger 
  2. LinkedIn Messenger 
  3. Email 
  4. Phone Call 
  5. Text Message 
3. Would you like to be notified about job opportunities via text message? (If you didn't like the texts it would be easy to unsubscribe.) 
  1. I would like to be notified about job opportunities via text message. 
  2.  I would not like to be notified about job opportunities via text message. 
4. Would you like to receive content from our company about employment related topics like how to write resumes, how to dress for interviews, and how to write cover letters? 
  1. I would like to receive such content. 
  2. I would not like to receive such content. 
5. If you'd like to receive content, how would you like to notified about the content? 
  1. Social Media Posts 
  2. Facebook Messenger Chat 
  3. Email
  4. Phone Call 
  5. Text Message 
6. If you had to choose one way to be notified about new content what would it be? (Select one) 
  1. Social media page 
  2. Facebook Messenger Chat 
  3. Email
  4. Phone Call 
  5. Text Message 
7. Do you often have questions about positions when you read our job descriptions on our careers page and on job boards? 
  1. Yes I do often have questions. 
  2. No I don't have any questions. 
8. If you could connect with a recruiter directly from our job ad and/or careers page via live chat would you use the chat to ask questions? 
  1. Yes I would use the chat and I would find it useful. 
  2. No I would not use the chat nor would I find it useful.
9. Would you feel comfortable receiving messages from a recruiting AI or chatbot about scheduling interviews, getting basic information, and notifying you about new positions? 
  1. Yes that would be fine. 
  2. No I definitely would not want to interact with an AI or chatbot. 
10. Do you think that recruiters who communicate via text message are unprofessional? 
  1. I think recruiters who communicate via text message to candidates are still professional ad find it more convenient. 
  2. I think that recruiters should never communicate to candidates via text message and find it inconvenient. 

Step 2: Create Your Survey in SurveyMonkey 


1. Click "Sign Up Free" to sign up for a free account


How To Use Surveys To Attract More Talent


2. Click "+ Create Survey" to create a new survey


How To Use Surveys To Attract More Talent


3. Select "Start From Scratch"


How To Use Surveys To Attract More Talent


4. Name your survey "Candidate Preference Survey" and select "Demographics" in the dropdown. Then click "Create Survey". 


How To Use Surveys To Attract More Talent


4. Click "New Question" and enter your 10 questions


Screen Shot 2017-06-28 at 1.48.54 PM.png

When You Finish Your Survey Will Look Like This: 




Click "Collect Responses" or "Next" and choose one or multiple ways to send out your survey. 


Screen Shot 2017-06-28 at 2.10.28 PM.png

Step 3: Distribute Your Survey 
You can use TextRecruit's candidate engagement platform to distribute your survey.
Our platform lets you engage candidates via text message, AI chatbots, and live chat. 
  • Send out a web link to your survey via text message 
  • Post your survey on your company page on social media 
  • Embed your survey on your careers page 
  • Use Ari, our recruiting AI, to send your survey out to candidates on Facebook messenger at scale
  • Send your survey out to job seekers on your job ads and careers page using Job Chat. Job Chat is our live chat client that integrates directly into job boards and careers pages. With Job Chat you can have real time conversations with job seekers who are interested in your company.  

2 Ways To Incentivize Your Candidates To Complete Your Survey


  • Offer a useful e-book to your candidates if they complete the survey 
  • Enter your candidates in a giveaway for a gift card if they complete the survey

Note that you may not want to incentivize candidates to complete your survey. 

Here's a useful post from Survey Monkey on a few things to consider when deciding whether or not to use incentives. 


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