The Olympics are a time to celebrate excellence in athletic achievements worldwide. With the spirit of competition and recognition in the air, it’s time we talk about earning gold in candidate experience.
Recruiting teams can learn a lot from Olympic athletes worldwide. They set goals for themselves and take time and preparation to make their dreams a reality. The most important accomplishment on their journey, though, is taking action to fulfill their goals and medal.
Many teams talk about a desire to improve the candidate experience, but this can be a daunting task and be left at conversation rather than concrete action. The right preparation and planning are crucial, but until actually executing on these plans like Olympians do, your candidates are still bearing the brunt of your outdated process.
Companies who excel at candidate experience - and who would, no doubt, earn gold medals for their efforts - follow these five steps.
Make the Application Quick and Simple
Frustrating job applicants before they even become candidates is the biggest mistake recruiting teams can make. An outdated, clunky, long, boring application process can dissuade good candidates from even applying in the first place.
To resolve this, make the application process simple. Include all necessary questions, like demographic data and resume uploads, but anything that can be considered a “luxury” question should be removed. This information is nice to have, but not totally necessary to get a candidate started on the interview process.
A mobile friendly application process is even better! 28% of Americans use their smartphone for the job search.
Talk to Your Candidates
Many times when a candidate sits down for an interview, the recruiter or hiring manager says, “I just want this to be a conversation to get to know each other.” That same mindset needs to be present throughout the hiring process, not just during one interview in the hiring process.
Talking to your candidates can take a few different forms. Offering candidate interview feedback, sharing company news and even just keeping candidates updated on their status are all part of the hiring conversation.
Since most companies are not sharing much detail with their candidates, the more information you can share, the better.
Resolve Bottlenecks That Slow Down the Process
Take a good look at your interview process and see where candidates are dragging along or taking a while to progress to the next step. This could be getting the initial phone screen scheduled or advancing from the first to second round interview.
Wherever this bottleneck lives, think about why it’s happening. Common bottleneck sources include waiting on feedback from hiring managers, issues with scheduling interviews based on multiple calendars or just a lack of time in the day to get back to candidates.
It’s important to resolve these bottleneck sources because 66% of job seekers said they will wait less than two weeks to hear back from an organization before moving on to another job opportunity.
Once you identify the problem, look for resources to help you resolve these issues. You may need to hire more folks for the recruiting team or rely on technology to get tasks done, for example.
Get Hiring Managers Off Their Computers During Interviews
Want to know a great way to annoy candidates? Don’t pay attention during their interviews.
Just as you and your hiring managers are taking time out of your day to speak with eager job seekers, your candidates are taking time out of their lives to meet you. Having an unpleasant experience in this meeting is a huge turnoff.
Being distracted on a phone or laptop during a conversation delays the interview and makes it drag along, plus it makes candidates feel unappreciated and undervalued.
Let your team know to be present and distraction-free. If you need interview guides, try printing them so there aren’t any other distractions on screen that interviewers can get lost in.
It’s sometimes hard to remember when you’re in a position to dole out jobs that your candidates are also providing you with a lot of great benefits. You have a full candidate pipeline thanks to them. You’re adding awesome employees to the company because of their interest in your jobs. You have a purpose in your career because of them.
Show your candidates a little love and give thanks for their time and dedication to your organization.