Everyone seems to be talking about Talent Relationship Management (TRM) today. The dynamics are quite similar to Customer Relationship Management (CRM).

CRM refers to all the practices, strategies and technologies utilized by companies to manage and analyze customer interactions and data throughout the customer lifecycle. The goal is to improve business relationships with customers, assisting in customer retention and driving sales growth.

Just like CRM solutions help companies drive customer relationships and retention, TRM helps businesses develop relationships with candidates and retain their interest beyond the hiring cycle. The key aim is to attract promising new employees and create a long-term bond with the most talented ones.

TRM covers the entire process: from the first contact with the applicant, to the recruitment and onboarding of new starters.

Successful TRM is based on the following three factors: Attraction, Transaction and Connection. We want to discuss each of them in more detail and provide some valuable tips as well as best practice examples by our Head of Recruitment Strategy and passionate recruiting expert Helena Stepanow.


This step measures how effective companies are at attracting talent to their career site, and it also assesses the overall functionality of their site.

  1. The right job title

Make sure to keep it plain and simple, using terms that are acknowledged in the industry.

Also use Google Trends to identify relevant keywords for search engine optimization. Ask yourself: Is quality or quantity more important?

Further, ensure to stay away from sugarcoating positions. Speak directly to your target audience and provide realistic and authentic info instead.

  1. Teaser text

The first paragraph in a job ad must be catchy, attractive and reveal key benefits by hinting at the company culture and advantages for the applicant.

  1. Keywords / SEO

According to Helena Stepanow, “here it is all about search engine optimization and the question, what do applicants as well as search engines look for? So the more relevant keywords you use in your job description, the more relevant the position becomes for both job portals and candidates.”

  1. Mobile optimization

Studies suggest that about 54 % of applicants get lost on the way, if the career site is not responsive. This includes things like using block text instead of bullet points.

Helena adds: “Various studies reveal that most people look for jobs in the morning or around noon, and preferably at the start of the week – mostly via mobile devices.

SELLBYTEL uses these kinds of information to really understand the target groups, their behaviors and needs. The result is a very user-friendly, simple and straight-forward mobile website.”

Have a look at our various career options!

  1. Length

The perfect job ad should be no longer than 240 words. Pretty short, right? However, it’s always good to keep things short and sweet.

  1. Continuous evaluation

“Adapt the posting along the way, consider parallel ads and regularly check click rates. Analyze, analyze, analyze! Use tracking tools, like the one provided by Indeed, that reveal how applicants heard of your job – rather than just asking people to add a note manually. This tends to be rather inaccurate and statistically invalid”, Helena suggests.

  1. Avoid empty phrases

Try to differentiate between seriously required skills and meaningless terms, identifying the relevance and necessity of, e.g. communication skills, for the respective position.


This describes how well organizations communicate with their prospects and applicants through content and personalization.

  1. Response & communication

Helena explains: “This includes factors like the application status, the acknowledgement of receipt as well as personalized rejections.

It’s all about transparency here and keeping the candidate in a close relationship with the recruiter. So make sure to display early on what your application process exactly looks like.

To ensure that, SELLBYTEL has been working on a new fact sheet that includes valuable info on the respective project, the positon, its requirements and benefits as well as the roadmap of the ongoing application process.”

  1. Candidate feedback & evaluation

Here it is all about measuring and evaluating the actual candidate experience, i.e. all impressions collected by an applicant throughout the entire application process.

At SELLBYTEL, this means the candidate receives a detailed feedback sheet with questions covering all the application steps following the contract signing. Helena points out: “We always work on our current processes and our team wants to make sure to constantly improve. This can only be done by honestly asking our candidates what they enjoyed in our process and what we can actually do better.”


This is a final walkthrough of the application experience from beginning to end. The most decisive step here is the application form and its simplicity.

Therefore, ensure to answer questions for yourself like: How should our application form be designed in order for it to be as clear and straight-forward as possible? What could be potential hurdles for the candidate? Have we added a contact option via chat or Whatsapp?

Helena adds: “It is absolutely key to present the applicant with a variety of options to apply, especially online via email or also professional platforms like Xing or LinkedIn. Always keep it short and simple.

SELLBYTEL complements this by regularly looking at the competition and their strategies. Here we do not merely concentrate on major firms, but also smaller, often very innovative start-ups. A great reference for that are the winners of the annual HR Excellence Awards.”

In a nutshell

Finally, it is key to conduct a thorough evaluation of all steps at the end of the application process in order to identify scope for further potential improvement. Always make sure to assess the process with the applicant’s eyes and take their perspective. After all, we want candidates to join our teams, or if not, to recommend us and keep us in good memory. That’s the kind of candidate experience we should all look for.