Integrating WhatsApp with Recruit | Zoho Recruit

Integrating WhatsApp With Recruit

WhatsApp is one of the most commonly used text-messaging applications which has gained immense popularity amongst businesses owing to its quick, and hassle-free messaging services. The integration of WhatsApp with Zoho Recruit brings a new level of convenience and efficiency to the recruitment process.

By leveraging WhatsApp's popularity and direct communication capabilities, recruiters can establish direct and instant connections with candidates. This integration empowers recruiters to engage with candidates in real-time, share updates, schedule interviews, and answer queries - all through the familiar WhatsApp interface.

Availability

Permission Required: Only users with the Administrator profile can enable this integration and Users with View/ Reply permissions can manage the Messages module.
Edition Required: Available for the Professional and Enterprise plans of both the Staffing Agency and Corporate HR editions of Zoho Recruit.

Prerequisites

To integrate WhatsApp with Zoho Recruit, you must have;
  1. A Facebook Business Manager account.
  2. A verified business.
  3. A WhatsApp Business account.
  4. A registered phone number to access WhatsApp Business API.
    Your phone number must meet the requirements mentioned
    here.

How do I connect my WhatsApp account with Recruit?

To help recruiters interact with their Candidates and contacts via instant messages from the Recruit account, as well as to keep a record of these interactions, Zoho Recruit provides a seamless integration with WhatsApp.

To integrate WhatsApp Business with Zoho Recruit;
  1. Navigate to Setup > Telephony > Instant Messaging.
  2. Click Details > Integrate .
  3. In the pop-up that appears, click Get Started.
  4. Log in with your Meta business account credentials.
  5. Confirm your profile by clicking Continue.
  6. Select your Meta business account and fill-in your business details. Click Next when you're done.
  7. Choose an account and a profile. Click Next.
  8. Click Finish to proceed.
  9. In the Configure WhatsApp Business Profile in Recruit pop-up:
    1. Provide a nickname for your profile.
    2. Select the phone number to be associated with your profile.
      Phone numbers linked to your WhatsApp Business Manager profile that meet the conditions mentioned in the
      prerequisites section will be listed here.
    3. Click Next when you're done.
  10. In the Account Preferences pop-up;
    1. Choose whether to add unknown senders as Candidates or Contacts
    2. Assign the recipient to users, groups or roles and choose users, groups or roles.
  11. Click Save to finish the setup.
Notes:
  1. Once your business is verified, it will be reviewed for compliance with the WhatsApp Terms of Service and WhatsApp Commerce Policy.
  2. You cannot use WhatsApp phone numbers that are already linked with a different platform. If you wish to do so, you must remove it from said platform first.

How do I deactivate the WhatsApp integration?

To deactivate the WhatsApp integration;
  1. Go to Setup > Telephony > Instant Messaging.
  2. Click on the Deactivate  button in the WhatsApp Business integration section.
  3. Click Yes, Delete in the confirmation pop-up to deactivate the integration.

Working with Instant Messaging

Initiating conversations with Candidates/Contacts

Zoho Recruit allows recruiters to engage with candidates in real-time, discussing job opportunities, scheduling interviews, and addressing queries instantly. The intuitive interface ensures that conversations are initiated swiftly, enabling recruiters to establish meaningful connections without any hassle.

To start a WhatsApp chat with a candidate (or) contact;
  1. Navigate to the record details page of the Candidate (or) Contact and click the WhatsApp icon located in the Mobile field.
  2. You will be redirected to the Messages module in a new browser tab.
  3. In the Message window, click Choose Template and select a WhatsApp Approved Template to begin your chat.
  4. Upon selecting a template, it will be displayed in a text box with all merge fields populated with details from the candidate/contact record. Verify your text and click Send.

  5. Your message will then be sent to the candidate instantly.

  6. When you receive a reply, you can continue the conversation using Custom Templates. Keep in mind that this can only be done within 24-hours after sending the initial message.
Continuing conversations without a reply

A WhatsApp Approved Template message can be used to start a new chat after the previous chat has expires (24 hours after the first message).

Automated WhatsApp messages

Using Zoho Recruit's Workflow Rules, conversations can be automatically initiated based on specific triggers and conditions. This method not only saves time but also ensures timely communication with candidates and contacts. Whether it's sending personalized messages, sharing important updates, or conducting follow-ups, Workflow Rules provide a seamless way to initiate conversations, enhancing engagement without manual intervention.

To configure WhatsApp notifications as a workflow action;
  1. Go to Setup > Automation > Workflow Rules and click Create Rule.
  2. Choose WHEN you want to execute the rule (For example, On a record action - Create) and WHICH RECORDS that you want to apply the rule to (For example, All Records).
  3. As the action to be performed when a record satisfies your defined criteria, select Instant Actions > Notify > Via Instant Messaging.

    Alternatively, you can do the same as a
    Scheduled Action, which can be triggered based on your scheduling criteria (For example, X minutes/hours/days later or at a set date & time)
  4. Select the template you wish to use and click Save. Keep in mind that only WhatsApp Approved Templates can be used here.
  5. Now whenever a new candidate record is created, a WhatsApp message with the specified template message will be sent to them. The conversation will be open for a 24-hour window, post which it will be closed.
Note:
  1. You will need credits to initiate WhatsApp conversations from workflows. Make sure you have purchased enough credits to have hassle free conversations.
  2. The WhatsApp number of the candidate/ contact must be stored in the Mobile field of the record, along with the country code. If not, the country can be specified separately in the country field.
  3. Pricing & Charges
    1. Conversations initiated by Zoho Recruit users (Business-initiated): You will incur charges based on WhatsApp's conversation-based pricing model.
    2. Conversations initiated by candidates (or) client-contacts (User-initiated): The first 1000 conversations every month will be free. After that, you will incur charges based on WhatsApp's conversation-based pricing model.

Filters and Views

In the Messages module you can seamlessly filter and organize conversations with our built-in filters and create custom view to list records based on specified criteria.

Filters 


  1. Not Replied in x Days/Weeks/Months
    Instantly locate messages that await your response within a specific timeframe.
  2. Replied in x Days/Weeks/Months
    Pinpoint conversations where replies were sent within a designated period.
  3. Message Time in x Days/Weeks/Months
    Sort messages based on their arrival time, streamlining your search effortlessly.
  4. Record Owner is x User or Logged-in User
    Filter messages based on the owner, ensuring you focus on relevant conversations.
  5. Replied By x User or Logged-in User
    Identify messages based on the responder, enhancing targeted interactions.

Custom Views

Beyond filters, our module allows you to customize your view, providing a tailored experience.
  1. Unreplied Messages
    Quickly access conversations awaiting your attention, enhancing response time.
  2. All Messages Sent Today
    Stay up-to-date by viewing all interactions from the current day, ensuring timely responses.
  3. All Unreplied Messages
    Focus on pending conversations, streamlining your follow-ups effortlessly.

Real-time Notifications 

When a candidate or contact sends a message to your WhatsApp business number, you can view it from the Notifications panel and respond promptly. Our notification system is designed to keep you in the loop effortlessly, giving you control over your conversations.

Here's how it works

The moment a message hits your business WhatsApp number, we send an instant notification directly to you. Stay informed, stay connected. Just click the bell icon residing in the top right corner of your screen. It’s your gateway to all incoming messages, keeping your communication streamlined and efficient.

The message notification is intelligently routed to the record owner, ensuring that the right person is always in the know. When multiple messages flood in, the notification displays the count, allowing you to gauge the volume instantly.

Messaging templates   

Zoho Recruit lets you create and manage two types of templates specific to the WhatsApp integration, namely;

WhatsApp Approved Template
Custom Template
Upon creating one of these templates, they will be sent to WhatsApp for approval. If the template is approved, you can then use it to instantly message candidates and contacts on WhatsApp.
These templates allow recruiters to create standardized messages with merge fields, such as the recipient's name, appointment details, or other personalized information. Custom Templates do not have to be approved by WhatsApp.
Important Note:
  1. If you wish to initiate a conversation with a candidate or contact (or re-initiate conversations after the 24-hour window), you can only do it using a WhatsApp Approved Template. Upon receiving a reply, you can use a Custom Template to send follow-up messages.
  2. If a candidate (or) contact has opted-out via GDPR, they can not be messaged via WhatsApp.
  3. You can create a total of 100 templates. This includes both WhatsApp Approved Templates and Custom Templates.

WhatsApp Approved Templates

To create a new WhatsApp Approved Template;
  1. Go to Setup > Customization > Templates > Messaging Templates and click Whatsapp Approved Template.
  2. In the pop-up that is displayed, fill-in the following details
    1. Choose what Module the template is intended to be used for, i.e., Candidates or Contacts.
    2. Select the Category of the template, i.e., Utility (or) Marketing.
    3. Select the Language used for the template's text. (Default Value: English)
    4. Enter a Title for the template (for eg., Initial Outrreach)
    5. Enter the text message you wish to send using the template. Type # to insert merge fields.
    6. Click Save.
  3. The template will then be sent to WhatsApp for approval. The status will indicate if the template has been approved or rejected.
Note:
  1. For WhatsApp Approved Templates, Zoho Recruit supports 60+ languages.
  2. The Language field is mandatory while creating the template.
  3. The Title field cannot contain multiple languages, special characters and emojis.
  4. Templates can be used only if their status is APPROVED.
  5. You cannot change the module while editing a template. This is to prevent errors in case any merge fields have been used.

Template Status 


  1. APPROVED
    Confirmed approval by WhatsApp. Your request has been successfully processed.
  2. PENDING
    Request created and sent to WhatsApp. Currently awaiting approval.
  3. REJECTED
    Not approved by WhatsApp. Your template has been rejected.

Custom Templates

To create a Custom template;
  1. Go to Setup > Customization > Templates > Messaging Templates and click Custom Template.
  2. In the pop-up that is displayed, fill-in the following details;
    1. Choose what Module the template is for.
    2. Enter a Title for the template (for eg., Initial Outreach)
    3. Enter the text message you wish to send using the template. Type # to insert merge fields.
    4. Click Save.
  3. The template will be created and can be readily used in conversations.

Replying to Messages 

When addressing instant messages, we offer a variety of options to ensure seamless and meaningful interactions. We understand the importance of simplicity and customization in your communication, and our platform is designed to provide you with a range of choices for efficient responses.

You can choose to respond directly from the message notification or by tapping the WhatsApp icon in the candidate record's Mobile field. It's a direct line to your conversations, available at your fingertips. You can either choose to type your reply or use a Custom Template.

To reply to a message;
  1. Click on the notification to view the message.
    Alternately, you can go to the
    Messages module and find it there.
  2. Type your message or click choose template.
  3. Click Send.

Merge Fields for Dynamic Messaging

Utilizing merge fields, you have the capability to incorporate context-specific information into your messages, enhancing personalization and efficiency. For instance, you can greet candidates with a tailored message like 'Hello, $[Candidates.First Name],' providing a personalized touch to your interactions.

The added benefit lies in the ability to preview this merged information before sending the message, ensuring accuracy and relevance in your communication. This proves invaluable in various scenarios; for instance, recruiters can use merge fields to populate contextual information in their emails, offering a more engaging and personalized experience for your candidates and client-contacts.
While creating/editing a messaging template, type # to bring up the merge fields pop-up. From there, you can select merge fields for the following modules;
  1. Candidates (Candidate Name, Email, etc.)
  2. Users (User Name, Alias, etc.)
  3. Organization (Organization Name, Website, etc.)
  4. Job Openings (Posting Title, Hiring Manager, etc.)
  5. Interviews (Interview Time, Location, etc.)
  6. Clients/Departments (Client Name, Department Name, Department Lead, etc.)
  7. Calendar Booking (Booking Name, Booking Link) [Only available for accounts registered in the USA]


Upon choosing the template to send a WhatsApp message, merge fields will automatically be replaced with values from the Candidate/Interview record. However, merge fields such as Job Openings, Calendar Booking & Interviews might have multiple values for one candidate. You will have to select these manually from the Select Merge Field Values pop-up.

Sharing Attachments via Instant Messages: 

In Zoho Recruit's Instant Messaging, you have the ability to send attachments seamlessly from the chat window. You can upload up to 5 files using two convenient methods:
  1. Upload from Computer: Users can attach files directly from their computers, ensuring quick and straightforward sharing.
  2. Attach from Cloud Drives: Recruit supports various cloud drives, including Google Drive, Sky Drive, Evernote, and Dropbox, allowing users to attach files directly from any of the mentioned platforms.
Each conversation view tab is thoughtfully organized into two sections: Messages and Attachments. In Messages, you'll find the text-based conversation, while the Attachments  sections displays all shared file attachments.

Limits

File Type
Size Limit
Image
5 Mb (Only jpeg, jpg & png)
Document
5 Mb (Only PDF)
Video
5 Mb (Only 3gp & mp4)
Audio
5 Mb (Only mp3, mpeg, ogg & amr)

Messaging Charges, Credit Purchases, and Auto-Recharge 

When it comes to messages sent by the company, charges apply. To simplify the process, we offer a user-friendly credit system tailored to your usage frequency. Here's how it works:
  1. Credit Purchases: You have the flexibility to buy credits based on your messaging needs. These credits act as your balance, from which charges are automatically deducted.
  2. Auto-Recharge for Seamless Transactions: After your initial credit purchase, you can opt for our convenient auto-recharge feature. Set a minimum credit threshold to be maintained in your account. When your balance hits this limit, an automatic recharge occurs, ensuring you never run out of credits unexpectedly. You can also specify the number of credits to be purchased when your limit is exhausted, guaranteeing uninterrupted messaging services.
This streamlined approach to managing credits ensures a hassle-free experience, allowing you to focus on your conversations without worrying about balance depletion.

To purchase additional credits;
  1. Go to Setup > Telephony > Instant Messaging.
  2. Click Buy Credits.
    This option will be available only after the phone number is active.
  3. Enter the amount and click Next.
  4. Click Make a payment.
To configure auto-recharge of credits;
  1. Go to Setup > Telephony > Instant Messaging.
  2. Click Auto recharge and toggle Enable Auto Recharge.
  3. Enter the Minimum credit balance to be maintained.
  4. Enter the number of credits to be added when the balance is below minimum.
  5. Click Save.  

Updated Charging Policy for Seamless Conversations

In a move by Meta to enhance user experience, businesses are now billed per conversation instead of charging candidates for individual messages. Under the new policies, each conversation comes with a 24-hour messaging window where candidates can send unlimited replies. For detailed information about their conversation-based pricing for WhatsApp Business and to explore their various rate cards, please click here

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