Best Place To Work: Do You “Shop” Your Candidate Experience?

Posted by Danielle Weinblatt

Is your company a "Best Place to Work?"

Rarely do you get a second chance to make a first impression. And a company’s first impression begins – and can end – with the candidate experience. An entire awards program is dedicated to benchmarking companies’ candidate experiences, and with good reason. The candidate experience has the potential to make or break your company’s recruiting efforts in this hyper-connected world.

Maybe you're vying for a coveted spot on the Fortune 100 Best Companies to Work For list. Great workplaces are built through the day-to-day relationships that employees experience, and that starts with the initial candidate experience.

If you’re looking for ways to promote a Best Place to Work culture, it may be time to put yourself in your candidates’ shoes and “shop” your talent acquisition processes:

Standardize the process

No matter the candidate or the job position, you can improve your ability to hire the right person by asking better, more standardized interview questions. Take care in developing your interview questions, as they can set the tone for the rest of the candidate experience. By asking multiple candidates a standardized list of questions, you can pin down the unique qualities that will identify one particular candidate as the perfect fit for your organization. Don’t be afraid to ask the occasional oddball question as well.

Meet candidates where they are

Today’s candidates are more mobile than ever before. Searching for job opportunities, applying directly for jobs, and conducting interviews via mobile devices are increasingly becoming the norm. Don’t miss out on great talent just because they aren’t geographically convenient. Offer multiple methods for interviewing, whether a phone interview, recorded video screening, or a live in-person interview. Your ideal candidate will appreciate the extra convenience, especially if they are currently employed and need to conduct interviews away from the office.

Show, don’t tell

When you’re trying to attract top talent, it’s not just about what the job has to offer and whether it’s a good fit for the candidate. Give candidates a glimpse inside your organization through video technology, which can be a great way to open or close the interview process. Showcase your company and give potential employees a feel for your culture without the need for an extended and time-consuming tour.

Keep in mind that feedback is a two-way street

You expect candidates to meet application deadlines, show up for the interview on time, and respond to your messages in a timely way. Are you extending the same courtesies, or are your candidates left in a “black hole,” unsure of where they stand? Your interviewing and hiring process should be reciprocal. Improve candidate satisfaction overall by communicating status information to candidates regularly. Actively seek feedback from both your newly hired employee and the candidates you didn’t hire. They’ll leave with positive feelings about your organization and you’ll gain valuable insight into your hiring process.

Use data to refine your interview process

Build a series of data points and knowledge about your applicants throughout the interview process, and you’ll have the information you need to make better decisions when it comes to who to hire. But don’t just track your candidates – leverage analytics to improve your recruiting team’s performance as well. Insight into process bottlenecks and reports on sourcing effectiveness by requisition and recruiter can lead to refined interviewing processes and improved candidate satisfaction.

A Great Place To Work

There are multiple factors at play in cultivating a "Great Place to Work." But it ultimately it comes down to the trust that is created through day-to-day relationships. Focus on the first impression that you make during the interview process to feel confident that you are taking the necessary steps to deliver an outstanding candidate experience and setting your company on the path to becoming a Great Place to Work.

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