Providing a good candidate experience is gaining more traction inside talent acquisition departments as it gets harder and harder to attract talent.
From an applicants perspective, the “Candidate Experience” is simply how they perceive your company’s recruiting process. And since perception is many times the ‘reality’, employers must take a more holistic approach to shape that journey.
Ideally, this is what you want to happen when someone has a great candidate experience:
"Even though I didn’t get the job I’m so impressed by your firm that I’m going to tell my friends and family how valued I felt during the process."
Obviously not everyone will say this, but it should be every employer’s goal to make them feel this way. Imagine how your employer brand will look then!
With that in mind here are 10 hacks you can implement today to impress your future applicants.
1. Let Them Express Interest
Most people hitting your career site are just passive candidates not ready to apply. You need to have a way to capture these folks so you can stay in touch with them when they are ready. Capture their name and email so you can add them to a talent community and send them regular updates about life at your firm.
2. Set Expectations
Tell them what to expect in the hiring process and alert them each step of the way. Here’s how Google does it. Be upfront about how you hire and what they can expect to face as they make their way through your process.
3. Give Them A Peek
Show off life at your company through photos, blogs and videos. Candidates are dying to know what it is like to work there so the more transparent you can be the more they will love you for it.
Revamp all your automated candidate communications, from auto responses to rejection emails, give them a second look and rewrite them to be more personable. Include ways to interact with you on social and other channels. Add value to those responses by personalizing them as much as possible.
5. Over Communicate
Touch base with your shortlist of candidates once per week to keep them updated. Let them know where they stand. Even if it just a quick note to say “hang tight”, they will appreciate the effort.
6. Orchestrate Onsite Interviews
Have a greeter prepped so they know to expect the candidate. Make sure they get enough breaks and offer them water/coffer as they head into their first interview. If they have multiple interviews in one day give them an agenda ahead of time so they can better prep.
7. Give Feedback
This may be the hardest thing to do for some employers but candidates crave real feedback. Good or bad, they will learn from it. Be as honest as you can about why they didn’t make the cut.
8. Ask For Feedback
You can’t improve your candidate experience unless you know what’s wrong. So survey your applicants after they apply and after they interview. You will gain valuable insight into where your flaws are.
9. Pick Up The Phone
If a candidate took the time to come to your office for an interview they deserve a timely yes/no follow up call. Respect their time and don’t leave them wondering.
10. Onboard them with Tech
Use cool onboard technology to get them started like being able to sign paperwork electronically. Many ATS providers now offer this or you can use external services like HelloSign.
Shaping the right candidate experience takes time and a little effort, but it goes a long way towards making you an employer of choice. They also love it when companies leverage new tools like chatbots, texting and other new technology to engage.
In the end, if you care about their experience, they will reward you for it.