Recruitment from the candidate’s perspective
As a recruiter, you’re probably already buried in applications, campaigns, new employees that need to be onboarded, and a million other things. On the other side of the aisle, candidates are also often working on applying for several job opportunities at the same time, and the way they perceive your (non)actions could have a severe impact on the effectiveness of your company’s recruitment campaigns.
By the way, if you really are swamped managing job offers, campaigns, etc, perhaps check out our ATS solution Beehire for a better way to work! We’ll save you half the time it takes to find new employees.
According to a CareerArc study, nearly 60% of candidates say they have had a bad recruitment experience. Of these candidates, 72% say they have talked about it directly with others or online. In addition, a study by Yaggo and IFOP in France shows that 60% of candidates are ready to boycott a brand in case of a bad recruitment experience!
These figures illustrate that the candidate’s experience can have a significant impact on the employer’s brand and the reputation of a company. But what is the candidate’s experience? And how can you influence it?
Candidate experience: a definition
Candidate experience is the general opinion a candidate has of a company’s recruitment process: everything from responsiveness to their application, to how well finer details such as employer branding assets are applied throughout the process. Candidates start forming their opinions from the moment they hear about your job offer and end when that person is onboarded into the company (or is informed they don’t get the job).
Effective recruitment has many similarities with marketing practices: in both cases, one is out to gain as many candidates/leads as possible, to then segment and filter them down to smaller numbers that can be converted to customers/employees. Similar to a potential buyer who can’t figure out how to buy something, candidates who are not (effectively) followed up on tend to have a negative experience and are 3.5 times less likely to apply for a new job in that company.
Thinking of the candidate experience in terms of a funnel is an approach borrowed from marketing, however paying attention to each stage of the candidate journey (analogous to a customer journey) can not only leave the candidate with a more positive image of the recruitment process, your company, and potentially even turn them into future advocates (even if they don’t get the job).
The different stages of the candidate journey
Being present at the right time, with the right message, and in the right place at each stage of the candidate journey is essential to improving your candidate experience. The phases are:
The potential candidate comes into contact with your job offer, and potentially even your company, for the first time. Maximize your reach by being present at events, on social networks, etc. in order to make your company and your offers known to potential candidates.
2. Consideration and interest phase
The candidate learns about your company and your competitors and decides to apply for a job with you. Give them an easy and user-friendly website, preferably in the context of a career section of your site, so they’ll go ahead and apply. Don’t forget to write a complete and attractive job offer to attract the best candidates!
3. Applying (or converting)
The candidate applies and starts the recruitment process. Helpful here is to make sure the various steps to apply aren’t too long or tedious. According to a CareerBuilder study, 1 in 5 candidates will not complete the process if it takes more than 20 minutes to complete the various steps (however, you should question if that certain 1 out of 5 who didn’t have 20 minutes for a job application would have really been someone worth considering …). Regardless, this step is crucial in order not to miss out on promising candidates!
You’re now in direct contact with some promising candidates and will get to know them better. Conversely, they too are learning more about your company during the various interviews and assessments. While you’re using this opportunity to gauge whether this will be a qualitative employee, they are imagining themselves working for your company, working alongside your colleagues. Spending some time discussing the company’s history, values, and culture can help steer their opinion. Be sure to give the candidate adequate time to ask any questions they may have.
5. Hire or reject
At this stage, the candidate is either offered a job or thanked for their time. In both cases, communicating honestly and continuously with the candidate will allow you to keep their trust while explaining your choice. To really leave the candidate with a positive experience try to avoid generic rejection letters.
6. The onboarding process
You’ve finally found the ideal candidate and are now onboarding them as an employee at the company! Stay in touch with them during their onboarding, asking how they’re fitting into their new team and if they’re finding everything alright.
Improve your candidate experience with Beehire
Beehire has several tools that can help give candidates a more consistent and effective experience with your company: from consistent branding applied to everything from emails to video calls, to help you keep track of applications so you don’t miss an important part of the funnel. Schedule a demo call with us to see how we can help!