Recruiters are 'constantly' using emojis
Using an emoji is the norm for most professionals today. From sending friends and colleagues smiley faces or a thumbs up to indicate you understand something, emojis are now a part of our working culture.
While this may be the case, where should recruiters be drawing the line when it comes to sending emojis to their candidates or clients?
In such a competitive industry, it is crucial agencies uphold their reputation and remain professional at all times to ensure relationships are built and maintained, but could sending a laughing face emoji to a candidate put all of that at risk?
According to Sense, a talent engagement and communication platform built for staffing and recruitment agencies, recruiters are constantly using emojis throughout their working day.
In fact, in 2019 the company reported that recruiters using the Sense software sent 328,482 emojis, with the most preferred emoji to send being the smiley face.
This emoticon was sent 24,932 times, making up 7.6% of total sends. Elsewhere, the thumbs up came fourth, a camera emoji came sixth and praising hands came in at eighth place.
Meanwhile, some of the rarer ones to make it onto the list of the 100 most used emojis includes the face palm at 87th, a dollar sign at 74th and an explosion at 48th.
Some emojis that were expected to rank higher include the love heart which reached 46th place and the crossed fingers emoji to signify good luck, which came in at 34th.
When using emojis, it is crucial recruiters do not blur the line between a professional relationship and a friendship. For example, Recruitment Grapevine reported last year that a worker tried to extort their relationship with a friend by asking for sexual favours in return for getting him a job interview.
In a text exchange, the professional said to his friend: “So what do I get out of this then eh,” which was then followed by a winking face emoji.
With this in mind, it’s crucial that recruiters think about how they are communicating with candidates and avoid any language that could be considered inappropriate.
Mandy Watson, MD of Ambitions Personnel, believes that if recruiters and agencies want to use emojis as a communication tool, then they must be aware of how to use them suitably.
"While not exactly conventional, using emojis can have a positive effect on your recruitment process. Very few people enjoy reading overly formal emails, and candidates are much more comfortable responding to recruiters if they feel the process is more informal. Emojis are an easy way to do that. A picture is worth a thousand words, after all,” she said.
"On the other hand, it might be best to ‘read the room’ when using emojis. Companies that have a more formal approach to their business will tend to prefer more formal communications and that extends to recruiting candidates too.
"It’s always best to ensure you’re speaking correctly to the right people."
Meanwhile, Lewis Richards, Managing Director of White Recruitment, believes that adopting the use of emojis is necessary to remain current with candidates in the modern day who are regularly using SMS and email, which all feature emoji use.
Understanding how to use emojis effectively, he says, helps the business to stand out from its competitors.
Richards added: “Here at White Recruitment we regularly use emojis when communicating with candidates via both SMS and email. The view that this is unprofessional is outdated – in our opinion, it injects personality and is more engaging.
“The reality is that the vast majority of our applicants are communicating with us via mobile, and the way we work reflects this. A good luck text message before an interview – emojis and all – is a personal touch that helps build long-term loyalty among our candidates. It stands us apart from our competitors.”