Design 22 July 2023

13 Tips to Help Optimize Your WordPress Website for Employee Recruitment and Retention

Melanie Robles

11 min read

Having a strong recruitment strategy is imperative for any company in today’s competitive marketplace. A well-designed recruitment strategy helps you to establish a unique position in the global job market and helps you attract the best possible talent for open roles in your business.

In addition to a sound recruitment plan, developing a strategy for retention is of equal importance. Without one, any talent you do attract may slip between your fingers after a year or two, increasing your staff turnover rate and disrupting management productivity.

Fortunately, there are lots of ways to cultivate a strong grip on recruitment and retention – and one of them is through your website.

WordPress is the world’s most popular content management system, and it has been for a while. In this guide, we’ll go through a comprehensive list of different ways you can use your WordPress website for optimized employee recruitment and retention.

1. Use A WordPress Recruitment Theme

WordPress features thousands of themes that can be used as guiding templates for the structure and operational value of your website—and some of them are specifically designed for recruitment.

If you want to optimize your website for recruitment and retention, you can significantly speed up that process by using a suitable WordPress theme. Once you’ve set up your WordPress site and domain name, you can bring this theme to life through the following actions:

  • Back up your site – Before you install any new theme, back up your previous site data. It’s just the smart thing to do.

  • Install the theme – There are loads of recruitment themes available for you to choose from, including JobBox or Jobify. Once you choose one, run a demo and install it on your site.

  • Install plugin and extensions – A plugin is a piece of software that extends the functionality of your site. Extensions are variations of this. Adding plugins like job portals and listings enhances your site and makes it even more user-friendly.

With the support of a theme like this, you can access an array of powerful functions, portals, and layouts that make the process of appealing to new job hires much smoother, such as:

  • Creating targeted search filters
  • Highlighting current or featured jobs
  • Easier resume upload portals
  • Creating social media share links and tags
  • Control over how to display job postings

Overall, a recruitment theme is an effective tool for surpassing a lot of the finicky details of website design from scratch, saving your website both time and money while producing a much more professional and seamless site.

2. Highlight Key Information

One of the most effective ways to prime your WordPress website for attracting talent is to make sure candidates have easy access to key information.

If you’re a qualified professional looking for work, some of the first things you want to know about a company are who they are, what they stand for, and what kind of services they offer. In a way, their informational needs are very similar to your customers’ needs.

Highlighting key information, such as a detailed list of your provided services, company history, and operational methodologies, are all ways to demonstrate the kind of work you do and potentially attract some high-performing employees.

3. Add A Brand History Page

One of the first things any potential recruit wants to know about a company is where it comes from and what its core values are.

Adding a brand history page to your WordPress site is an easy fix that comes with loads of benefits. Not only does it help to cultivate a stronger brand identity, but it also fosters a sense of trust in the company and provides the necessary context for its present-day goals.

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When you’re scrolling through job listings, company values and history aren’t usually included in the description. But this is a grossly overlooked feature that can boost your chances of attracting top talent significantly. Plus, it enhances consumer trust and loyalty.

4. Encourage Applications 

If you’re looking for new employees, make it obvious. Potential candidates shouldn’t have to dig for information about your hiring process. There are several ways to do this:

  • Add a “we’re hiring” pop-up with the option to send your resume
  • Add a full hiring page complete with upload portals and job descriptions
  • Provide all the necessary tools and resources for them to easily apply

Sometimes, it takes a lot of courage to apply for a new job. But you can streamline this process by making it as easy and enjoyable as possible for candidates to send through their applications. And with WordPress’s array of plugins and themes, this is a simple process.

5. Ask Your Existing Employees For Feedback

If you want to know what your company’s best and worst features are, look no further than your existing employees. They’ll be able to tell you exactly what drew them to work at your company, and why. They can give you pointers on what to mention in the descriptions, and which aspects of your business to showcase for the best application response rate.

Asking your employees for feedback also includes them in this important conversation, thus improving employee engagement and facilitating higher retention rates.

6. Optimize Your Images For Performance

Images help bring your website content spring to life and boost online engagement. In fact, studies have found that websites with high-quality images are 80% more likely to see longer viewing sessions from users.

But just adding images isn’t enough; there’s an artistry to it. You can optimize your images to make them even more performance-oriented, thus attracting the right users and keeping potential candidates on your website for longer.

Optimizing images on WordPress is simple: make sure they are in the correct format (JPEG or PNG works best) and adhere to the right pixel count for their size. Too high, and the image will take too long to load, triggering high bounce-back rates.

But too low, and the image quality will suffer, weakening the appearance of the site. Hiring a brand specialist or content creator to handle your image optimization is worth the cost.

7. Be Precise In Your Job Descriptions

Companies are quick to complain about receiving job applications from ill-suited candidates. But often, the reason for these misfirings has more to do with the description or role advertisement than naivety. Or perhaps it’s a bit of both. But either way, precision is always a good thing.

In the job listing section of your website, take care to outline your needs with crystal clarity. Use accessible language, keep it short and to the point, and make sure it’s impossible for the opening to be misconstrued. This can help deliver a “quality over quantity” application situation.

8. Embrace Employee Advocacy

Employee advocacy is a marketing strategy that involves incorporating existing employees into your promotional content. For instance, adding a page to your website that features high-quality images and descriptions of current employees is a form of employee advocacy.

However, the best form of employee advocacy comes when the employees themselves let their voices be heard. Brief but authentic statements from your top-performing employees about their role or your brand works wonders on a website.

This form of marketing is effective because it benefits both existing employees and potential ones. For existing hires, it creates a sense of belonging, driving up engagement and purpose.

For job-seekers, it demonstrates a level of care and consideration for staff members and indicates a healthy company culture. And as an added bonus, employee advocacy helps customers trust your brand on a deeper level. Win, win, win!

9. Conduct Deep Research

When it comes to building a website that is optimized for recruitment and retention, you need to get into the minds of your target audience. And if your target audience is existing and potential employees, conducting research into their needs and expectations is essential.

For instance, job-seekers in the Millennial creative industry place a high value on flexibility. You can use what you find to help position your website in a way that primes you for attracting their attention and inspiring them to make an application.

10. Respond To All Applications

Assuming you do set up an application system on your website for potential hires, it is important to take all of them seriously. Respond to all applications with gratitude and professionalism to demonstrate a level of care and attention to detail.

For all you know, the candidates you turn away this year will be so impressed by the candor or kindness of your response, they’ll work hard to come back next year and blow you away.

If this sounds like too much effort, set up an automatic response system that does the job for you. We are in the age of automation after all, and giving your applicants a response (even when the answer is a “no”) can show necessary respect and communication from your brand.

11. Deactivate Plugins You Don’t Use

As much as WordPress is beloved for its wide variety of plugin options, there is such a thing as overkill. Too many plugins on your website can slow it down and make it hard for users to navigate your site, making them likely to leave out of frustration.

It’s useful to regularly assess which plugins are performing best, and which ones are dead-weighting your website. Simple is usually best. Keep what works, and cut the rest.

12. Showcase Your Existing Employees

This tip is an offshoot of the previous one on employee advocacy, but it’s worth expanding on. In terms of retention, it’s a creative yet highly effective way to give back to your employees.

Before employees are staff members, they’re regular people, and people like to feel appreciated. You can show them you appreciate their efforts and presence in the company by showcasing them on your website pages.

Not only does this add a powerful, humanizing touch to your website, but it also gives high-performing employees the credit and recognition they deserve.

Studies show that employees who feel recognized are up to six times more likely to stay with their company. Praise and true appreciation can be hard to come by in the corporate world, but there are so many good reasons to change that, and this is one of them.

13. Make Your Site Easy To Navigate

And finally, the most important point to remember when priming your website for recruitment or retention is to make it as easy as possible to navigate. This is important for a number of reasons across the board, such as:

  • Users expect it – Today’s customers and job-seekers have high standards for website usability. Disappointing them could hurt your profits, image, and bounce rate.

  • It indicates quality – Talented hires want to know they’re walking into a good company, and website usability is one metric they’ll use to determine that. Make it an easy choice for them by putting your best work on display.

  • Faster results – If your aim is to direct users to a certain page or conversion goal, easy navigation is your best friend. The easier your site is to navigate, the faster they’ll follow the path you lay out for them.

All in all, making your site easy to navigate is the right thing to do. It strengthens your brand image and makes you more competitive, both of which have a positive impact on recruitment and retention rates.

The Bottom Line

There’s a reason why WordPress is the world’s favorite CMS platform. It operates faster, provides more design options, and makes it easier for you to develop a website layout that users can navigate smoothly. Some of the world’s top-performing websites use it, for good reason.

WordPress also happens to be one of the best places to attract fresh talent for your company and showcase to existing employees why loyalty is the best policy.

By tailoring your website to contemporary job-seeker’s needs and implementing the strategies behind employee advocacy, your company can both attract and retain the highest-performing talent around and find a brand identity that appeals to all.


About our Guest Author: Wordplay ninja, article alchemist, and knowledge inquisitor. Melanie Robles is an experienced freelance writer and editor covering a variety of topics. When she’s not consumed by the creative vortex, she spends her time exploring new fields of knowledge to broaden her horizon.

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