Getting the Candidate Experience Right...
As recruiters, we get to watch from the sidelines as companies vie for the best people on the market. For me, it is an absolute thing of beauty to see a company roll out the red carpet for their prospective employees. I love when they reach out soon after reviewing the resume, quickly set a time for a meetup, then communicate what to expect (possibly send an itinerary), team members greeting and escorting the prospect to the location, communicating afterward either with next steps, polite decline or promptly extending an offer. I think that companies that have it together enough to hit all the marks in the hiring process impress me because I didn't come from a background where we did it the right way every time.
Early in my career I was in operations for a long time and owned a small business. I never considered the candidate's experience apart from being nice to the applicants. I certainly didn't have a gameplan to attract and land top talent by creating a branded experience. And now that I am on the outside looking in at this process it fascinates me. Probably because now I have seen really what a really good candidate experience looks like and I have seen companies lose TOP TALENT. Often the ones that were missed initially were very interested and motivated towards the company's opportunity.
There are many articles written on candidate experience. I will post some at the end of this blog post. I have really liked what I have read and I think it would be a great idea for any business owner or department head to bone-up on this topic. I think this falls under a category of best practices where you say that prospective candidates are important but put into action it might not look like it. Most executives say that attracting and retaining top talent is critical for their business's success but in the same breath might be ghosting an applicant.
I know that this topic seems basic, but recently I have seen companies lose out on their #1 pick due to communication-related issues that were completely preventable. I just wonder what the financial impact is for a company that instead of getting their #1 pick ends up with #2 or even #3. There has to be a way to quantify that...
Apart from missing out on our most valuable resource (talented people), there is another often overlooked aspect of mishandling the hiring process. And that is how people view your company and your brand. When a company declines a candidate but blew them away with their candidate experience and vision, the candidate will probably speak highly of the company even though they didn't get hired this time around. The converse is true of companies that don't have their process down. People who got ghosted, felt they weren't communicated with, or were dealt with in a rude manner will probably become detractors.
Thank you for reading. That is my 2 cents. I would love to hear what you think in the comments...
Here are the articles I like on the topic: