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Handle Your Candidates With Care

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Aisling Harrison Candidate, Blog, Interviews...

Candidate Experience is an applicant’s response and feelings towards a company’s hiring process. Essentially, it is how they think they’ve been treated by a potential employer once they have applied for a vacancy.

There are many key components to Candidate Experience, and if an employer fails to acknowledge them, they will lose out on talent.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS

Candidate Experience starts the moment a job seeker discovers a job advert and engages with it.

Candidates will quickly decide if a job advert appeals to them; therefore content-wise, it needs to be clear and detailed. As well as the duties of the role itself, a job advert should also provide information on the recruiting employer and employee benefits.

Omitting information such as; salary, hours, location and how to actually apply will infuriate and deter candidates from pursuing an application.

OUTLINING EXPECTATIONS

On average, 75% of candidates never receive a response after submitting an application. We can assume it was unsuccessful, but it is highly likely a suitable candidate for another role will not reapply to that organisation if they’ve been snubbed once by them.

For the applicants who have generated interest, employers must manage expectations as to when the candidate will be communicated with. Whether it be the response from the application or the interview, poor communication aggravates candidates.

The hiring process should be about building trust, and candidates will form stronger relationships with potential employers that communicate well with them.

Keep candidates in the picture, not in the dark.

FLEXIBILITY

Even if there is time-pressure for the business to have a vacancy filled by a deadline, employers should aim to be flexible with their candidates to provide a better experience.

It’s not just about providing notice and telling a candidate when they will be contacted. If a potential employer wants to conduct a telephone interview, prior to a formal interview, then they should be mindful of this person’s other commitments, and aim to arrange contact at a mutually beneficial time.

This doesn’t always happen and candidates who may be in other jobs feel the pressure to be available at a potential employer’s beck and call.

Sometimes, the day of the interview will be fixed and non-negotiable. This can be wasteful, as not all strong candidates will be able to drop other commitments, especially if the interview period was not specified in the job advert.

Being unaccommodating won’t just create a poor candidate experience, it will prevent talent from even applying.

INTERVIEW EVALUATION (IT WORKS BOTH WAYS)

The interview is not just an assessment for the employer to judge the candidate. It is an opportunity for the candidate to judge right back. They will be analysing if the business is the right fit for them, by observing the culture and environment.

Potential employers with poor punctuality and manners, will not impress the prospective talent. If someone is unpleasant to be interviewed by, how will they be to work for? Interviewees should be challenged, not crucified.

FEEDBACK

Over 50% of companies will not provide interview feedback to unsuccessful candidates.

Just because someone isn’t the best fit at that time or even in that particular role, doesn’t mean they would not be an excellent asset for a business in the future.

ONBOARDING

This is the transition from being a candidate to an employee. It’s the final stage of the candidate experience, and will massively impact on the “new starter experience”.

The employer is responsible for ensuring their new recruits are made to feel welcome, well informed and engaged with their new role.

COVID IMPACT?

Due to the devastating impact of COVID on the global workforce, what was a candidate-driven job-market at the start of the year, is now considered market-led with the drastic increase in unemployment. Fundamentally, it is considered that the more crowded and competitive the job market is, the less pressure there is for employers to attract candidates.

While there may be a greater number of candidates willing to take less desirable work right now, they’ll not hesitate to secure better opportunities, especially if they had a poor experience as a candidate.