Parallel | Out Of The Box Alternatives to Cover Letters To Excite Candidates

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March 1st 2023

Out Of The Box Alternatives to Cover Letters To Excite Candidates

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Let's BFFR (be f**king for real) – what’s worse than writing cover letters? Reading them. Think of cover letters as a pitch – but not everyone has that ‘salesperson’ in them (no matter how hard they try to summon Don Draper, Beth Boland or Chris Gardner). So are some seriously talented candidates slipping through your fingers due to cover letter causalities? You bet. 

So why are you still sticking with the “300 words or less” letter requests?! This week on Parallel, we’re taking your hiring process into the future with four seriously out of the box alternatives to target top tier talent. Don’t accidentally hire someone who only has the skill of ‘selling’ themselves over someone who can actually get the job done. Let’s hire smarter, not harder in 2023.

Collect Candidate Information Through Interactive Forms

Collecting basic information during the job application process can be like pulling teeth – for the candidates at least. Want your listing to be the one the candidate completes, and not “saves for another day” and forgets? Make it engaging.

Tools like Typeform are your new go-to. A free form maker that lands more leads, with 95% of users gaining for data after switching to this particular online form builder, is an excellent way of gathering the required info, while including quizzes, polls, multi-choice questions, and GIFs.

Parallel’s #ProTip is to give candidates a heads up on how long it will take to complete your form – it shows you respect and value their time, while preps them for success.

Create A Mini “Day In The Life Of A [Job Title]”

Meet your new method of understanding of the candidate and their capabilities! Think of a typical scenario a candidate would face in the role and quiz them on how they would respond to the scenario (see our example below). The bonus? This method gives candidates a peak into the realities of the role and their day-to-day responsibilities, saving you from an early quit if they realize 3-days in that the job isn’t quite… right for them.

“Your manager needs a document printed for their 10am meeting. It’s 9:50am and the printer is down. What do you do?”

Request a Customized Sample Project

Similar to a “Day In The Life Of A [Job Title]” – requesting a personalized project is an excellent third or final step (don’t pitch this too soon or you’ll scare them off) of identifying which of your candidates will be the perfect fit for the role.

Brainstorm with your team about a particular task that the previous employee in the role had to tackle, and request the candidates to complete it. Maybe it’s “write the copy for this Instagram caption” or “schedule these meetings into this Google calendar and invite x, y, z” – see your candidates in action!

Implement A Referral Program

Don’t sleep on the power of employee referral programs! A referred candidate is most likely to already have insights on how the company operates from the employee who recruited them. Fun fact: a whooping 88% of employers consider employee referral the best way to find candidates – so it’s definitely not the system to sleep on!

...and the best part is that it lifts some weight off your shoulders – rather than one person looking, you’ve got your entire team set to recruit mode. Still need a step up? At Parallel, you can receive referred candidates straight to you! Simply create an account with us and you are on your way to building your top talent.

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