Improving the Candidate Experience During the Recruiting Process

Amy Worthy   August 18, 2016  

Recruiting top talent is hard, but it’s easy for recruiters and hiring managers to forget that looking for a job and going through the interview process is also hard. Finding appealing jobs and filling out applications takes time, and that’s before the interviews even start. On top of the fact that the interview process is taxing for job candidates, a negative candidate experience can damage your business’s reputation.

The candidate experience may never be perfect, but there are steps you can take to make it easier for everyone involved:

  • Improve job descriptions. If you’re using an Applicant Tracking System (ATS), and you should be, the system will pull the resumes that best match the job description. The more a job description reflects the actual job, the better the submissions will be.
  • Simplify the application process. It’s a common misconception that job candidates who are willing to go through a lengthy application process will be more dedicated in a job. No one likes wasting his or her time—especially the people you want to hire. Don’t make them jump through unnecessary hoops.
  • Automate when it makes sense, but keep it personal. Automation is an amazing thing, but overuse can ruin the candidate experience. No, you can’t reach out individually to every candidate. You should make any automation as personal as possible and really consider whether or not automation is the best solution.
  • Streamline the interview process. Some jobs require more extensive interviews than others. Whatever position you’re interviewing for, make sure there is a purpose to each interview. Screening candidates in a phone interview will help eliminate some unnecessary first round interviews.
  • Make sure all involved employees from your team are invested in the hire. If members of your hiring team do not care about the position or who fills it, they shouldn’t be on the hiring team. Meet with your team and explain the importance to get everyone on board.
  • Set realistic expectations—be open and honest. Transparency is key to ensuring you hire well. You want it to be a good fit for both your company and the candidate, so be honest. Let them know what can be expected.
  • Don’t forget the details. Details like start date, salary, benefits, etc. are important when it comes to a candidate’s decision making. While you may not put every detail in the job description, you need to give them this information once you start getting serious and before the official offer.

A great way to learn whether or not your company is providing a good candidate experience is by surveying your new hires. Just ask how they felt about the process and what they would have changed. By improving the candidate experience, you can make better and quicker hiring decisions.