When you’re trying to attract top talent instead of losing it to your competition, candidate experience can make all the difference.
Why should you focus on the candidate experience?
The use of social networking sites for job searches is common, and word will spread about candidate experience at your organisation. If someone has a positive experience, even if they didn’t end up being hired, they will feel encouraged to refer others who may be interested in your company.
This strengthens your professional network and talent pool for future hiring needs. On the other hand, candidates sharing negative experiences on social media or professional networking forums could drive away talented people before they even apply!
You Gain More Credibility
Good candidate experience can be a very powerful tool when it comes to establishing your employer brand. Not only does it impact acceptance rates for offers made to existing applicants, but also tells prospective candidates out there that you’re a trustworthy and credible employer. Building your employer brand helps you in both the short term and the long run, by improving your ability to attract great talent and fill open positions quickly. This reduces recruitment costs and may also lower attrition rates, helping your bottom line.
How to improve the candidate experience:
Here are some easy ways to ensure a good candidate experience at your company:
1.Empathize with Every Candidate
When you’re looking to create a great candidate experience, show respect and empathy for each person. Respect the time they are taking out of their schedule to apply for a position with your company, by not being late for interviews and responding to queries as soon as possible.
Give them your full attention when they’re speaking, instead of checking your phone or interrupting them. Be courteous in all communications, and whether you hire them or not, keep each candidate in the loop throughout the hiring process.
2. Be Clear about Job Descriptions
No one wants to go through the trouble of preparing for an interview only to find that the position has more responsibilities and demands than the posting mentioned. Or worse yet, actually, get hired and then discover that the job description is very different from what was discussed during the interview.
When you’re outlining the roles and responsibilities for any position, whether in a job posting or an interview, make sure you’re clear and accurate. Be upfront about the requirements and expectations for the position, as well as company values and goals.
3. Simplify the Interview Process
Use online recruiting software to make the application process easier. An applicant tracking system or ATS can also screen potential candidates, to keep from wasting their time and yours. After that, personalise the interview process for each shortlisted candidate to make them feel special and valuable.
Take a few minutes to read up on their background, experience and aspirations before the interview, so you can ask questions tailored to them as individuals. This also helps you avoid – or at least cut down on – repeating questions that have already been asked.
4. Showcase the Company Culture
It’s important for candidates to experience the company culture and values right from the start, so they can understand whether they will be comfortable or not. This keeps you from hiring people who are not a good fit, as well as reducing attrition and turnover rates.
Introduce potential candidates to the workplace by giving them a tour and inviting them to speak with a few employees. Instead of common recruitment, hiring and onboarding processes, customize candidate management strategies to reflect your organisation’s culture.
5. Communicate Openly and Honestly
The best way to build trust and connect with applicants is effective communication. Be clear about hiring processes and timelines, provide explanations for every step, and give them honest feedback.
Use a cloud-based applicant tracking system to automate responses and engage with candidates in real-time. Touch base regularly, even if you have no updates, so they don’t feel forgotten or ignored. Whether they end up being hired or not, ask them for feedback about your hiring process, so you can make improvements where needed.
If you’re looking to hire the best people, enhancing the candidate experience is the best start you can make. Before you know it, your potential talent pool will have expanded more than you ever expected, simply through great references and your own growing reputation!