As mentioned in one of our previous blog posts, Top 5 Workplace Trends for 2017, many companies will be looking to improve the candidate experience in this upcoming year. Technology has played a large part in where the hiring process is currently. It has also led to a different set of expectations from the candidates that apply. Many companies now utilize technology to make the hiring process more streamlined. It is essential that they take a proactive approach to ensure that applicants receive a quality experience regardless of the end result. In this post, we will look at three ways that companies can improve their candidate experience and in return receive higher quality and more engaged applicants.
1 - Redesign Application
There are many instances when a candidate’s experience becomes negative the second they begin the application. This is a major issue as solid applicants are lost before they have the chance to learn more about the position and company. While employers should still aim to get the most information to make an informed decision, the application should be designed with a focus on the job-seeker. Some examples include shortening the application, optimizing for mobile devices and allowing quick applications through a profile system. By doing these things, companies will begin obtaining and retaining quality candidates at a much higher rate.
2 - Increase Candidate Preparation
Many businesses expect candidates to be prepared for various steps throughout the hiring process. It is beneficial for all involved that the employers let applicants know what to expect and ways to prepare. The more equipped the candidate is with the basics during this stressful time, the more they can focus on their fit with the company. For example, offer easy-to-access content on the company website that highlights the history, culture and hiring process. By doing so, you give candidates a standard path to navigate and a foundation of knowledge they can bring with them throughout the process.
3 - Improve Communication
Communication is key during the hiring process for both employers and job seekers. Unfortunately many companies are falling short in this area. According to The Talent Board’s study on candidate experience, 91.4% of unqualified applicants received zero contact from an employer besides the initial automated application receipt. Employers may feel that contacting unqualified candidates is meaningless and that time should be given to those that are qualified.
This is a problem for a few reasons. By leaving applicants hanging, employers are hurting their chances for that person to apply for another position in the future. They are also leaving themselves open to criticism. Those forgotten candidates will let family and friends know about the experience. In a business world that is built around referrals and social media, this can become a dangerous mix. Now, as I mentioned in the opening paragraph companies are using technology to their advantage in many of the hiring steps. Thus employers at the very least should be able to send out an automated message to those not qualified thanking those candidates for their time and leaving the door open for future opportunities.
By putting these three ideas into practice, employers will begin to move in the right direction in terms of candidate experience. But it goes beyond the implementation. A system of monitoring and further developing these concepts should be put into place to ingrain this important issue into the culture of the company.