With a national unemployment rate of around 4%, businesses looking to fill positions may need to become more creative about reaching out to potential employees. First, know your applicant pool and reach out to employees in a way that works best for them. For many types of jobs, this means posting open positions online.

Statistics Brain conducted research in March 2017 on online job posting websites from both the employer and employee perspectives. 77% of job applicants reported using mobile apps to search for positions. The top three job search sites as ranked by users based on ease of use, number, and quality of jobs and response rate were Indeed, LinkedIn, and GlassDoor. Other online job posting sites that ranked well were Monster, CareerBuilder, and SimplyHired.

While 89% of employers surveyed reported hiring someone from LinkedIn, only 39% of job seekers indicated that they were active on LinkedIn. In addition to knowing where talented jobseekers are congregating, it is important to understand how your hiring processes shape the candidate experience and may be preventing you from reaching potential employees.

A survey of job seekers from Software Advice, a recruiting tools research firm listed the top causes of a bad candidate experience:

  • Unclear application instructions
  • Extremely long application
  • Minimal job description
  • No confirmation email
  • No notice when the position is filled
  • Unable to contact a recruiter
  • No salary / benefits information
  • No information about the interview process

One untapped market might be older employees. According to the most recent data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), “about 40% of people ages 55 and older were working or actively looking for work in 2014. That number, known as a labor force participation rate, is expected to increase fastest for the oldest segments of the population—most notably, people ages 65 to 74 and 75 and older—through 2024. In contrast, participation rates for most other age groups in the labor force aren’t projected to change much over the 2014–24 decade.”

Forbes identifies the following tips for supporting older workers and job seekers:

  • Advertise job openings in newspapers in addition to online outlets
  • Display photos and videos of older people in recruitment marketing materials
  • Cut down on ageism by using a group-interview model
  • Encourage mentoring
  • Provide ample training for older workers
  • Offer flexible work arrangements
  • Provide a wide range of benefits

The Senior Job Bank is a resource that provides an online opportunity for employers to connect with job seekers 50 and older in a variety of positions and locations.

Finally, consider ways to encourage your current employees to recommend potential new hires. Another survey from Statistics Brain reports that 26.7% of external hires were based on referrals, as opposed to 2.3% from recruiters or 2.3% from walk-ins. Internal transfers or promotions made up 51% of filled positions.