How crucial is candidate experience in making a successful hire?

Orla Hodnett
Orla Hodnett

Candidate experience during the recruiting process is make or break for securing the right hire. An individual judges your company by this process and it’s very hard to shake a bad first impression. Negative experiences can put off sought-after candidates. Plus, if a candidate has a bad experience in the hiring process, they will share this experience with friends. Here are a few candidate experience essentials you should bear in mind when recruiting:

The application process

When thinking about candidate experience, start at year zero: the application process. A frustrating or long-winded application process can be off-putting and candidates can even abandon an application midway through. Even if an application is not mobile optimised, you’re running the risk of disengaging with candidates.

70% of job applicants never receive even an automated response to their application.

If you parse CVs to get essential information and take applications via LinkedIn, you are creating a good experience. If thematic questions or psychometric assessments are in your recruiting strategy, explain why they are part of the recruiting process. When posting jobs, you should clearly and concisely set out your requirements and your recruitment process.

Communication

Out of any element of candidate experience, communication is what you should pay most attention to. The failure to communicate with candidates will, without fail, irritate. 70% of job applicants never receive even an automated response to their application. Making sure that your candidates can contact you with any questions and setting up a two-way avenue of communication is highly significant.

You need to set expectations

Even if you’re up to your gills in applications, setting expectations can avoid annoyance. Worst case scenario, even If you cannot assure a candidate a call from a recruiter due to volume, set expectations and make that clear in any automated responses. Recruiting software like HireHive is extremely useful and time saving at this stage. Feedback can mean a lot to successful and unsuccessful candidates. If you can articulate to candidates honestly why you made the decisions you did and deal in professional manner, it fosters a positive attitude about your company.

One-to-one meetings, within the team as well as with HR, in the initial weeks and fostering a sense of teamwork makes an individual feel integrated.

Onboarding

Candidate experience does not end at the recruiting stage. Onboarding and first impressions are undeniably important to employee retention. You don’t have to assemble the welcome committee, but putting in a little effort to reinforce your company brand and make a new person feel comfortable at this stage makes a huge difference in the long run. If expectations and goals are not reinforced on day one, it undermines their significance. One-to-one meetings, within the team as well as with HR, in the initial weeks and fostering a sense of teamwork makes an individual feel integrated. Guidance and support at this stage makes sure that the work put in at the recruiting stage was not time wasted. Follow up on your end of the bargain.

Candidate experience is something that you can have complete control over. It doesn’t mean you need to spend every waking hour calling and emailing candidates to keep them interested, you just need to keep these key things in mind. Using recruiting software can help to keep up contact with candidates.

Empathy and communications skills are essential, as is keeping the application process for jobs simple. Make a candidate feel welcome and they will be receptive to your culture. A positive candidate experience does not have to cost much, but its returns are impossible to calculate.

Sign up for your free trial today!

Start your free trial