For many people, texting is the favored – and sometimes only – way to connect with friends and family. Now research from Robert Half Technology suggests that it may also be a common communication method between employers and job candidates.
Two-thirds of IT decision makers (67%) surveyed said their organization uses texting as a way to coordinate interviews with prospective job candidates. Nearly half (48%) of U.S. workers polled in a similar survey said they've received a text message from a potential employer.
When asked about the greatest advantage of texting during the hiring process, quick communication was the top response among IT managers and workers. They also acknowledged the greatest drawback was the possibility of miscommunicating.
"Managers are taking steps to speed up the recruiting process," said Ryan Sutton, a district president of Robert Half Technology. "Using texting as part of your hiring efforts may mean the difference in getting to your top candidate first and fast, especially at a time when they could be receiving multiple offers."
Sutton cautioned, "But this form of communication can have its limitations. Whether you're looking for a new job or a new employee, use texting wisely — and watch your etiquette."
Robert Half Technology offers texting tips for both managers and job seekers during the hiring process:
For hiring managers
Ask permission. While most job seekers would be happy to receive communication in any form from prospective employers, verify they're open to text messaging.
Save it for simple communication. Texts are ideal for scheduling interviews or following up. But when you have important business to discuss, such as job offers and salary negotiations, stick with in-person or phone meetings.
Reach out during business hours. Avoid texting at night or on weekends to demonstrate you respect work-life boundaries.
For job seekers
Follow their lead. Even if you have a hiring manager's contact info, let them send the first text. Not everyone uses their mobile phones for work purposes, and they may not want to blur the line between professional and personal communication.
Avoid shortcuts. Stay away from abbreviations, acronyms or shorthand. When in doubt, write it out. You'll come across as a more serious candidate.
Remain professional. Avoid using slang, emojis or gifs — anything that would raise eyebrows or paint you as not mature enough to handle the job. And always confirm you're texting the right person.