Why you need to improve how you treat job candidates

We seriously get the frustration of recruitment, including being inundated with unqualified job candidates, the difficulty in differentiating the right candidate from the sea of applicants, the time it takes to manage the process, the difficulty in recruiting highly talented candidates and often the high costs involved in recruitment.

This is why so many organisations and recruiters turn to technology to streamline the recruitment process or hand the process over to low level recruiters. The result?  A shield between job applicants and the company and more often than not – a poor job candidate experience.

Are you, or your organisation guilty of the following?

  • Making candidates fill in long and complex application forms, often repeating information that can be found on a resume.
  • Sending generic and bland responses to job candidates, including canned responses from your Applicant Tracking System.
  • Telling candidates that unless they are shortlisted, they won’t hear back from you.
  • Failing to acknowledge receipt of their application.
  • Not providing candidates with updates as to the progress of their application.
  • Failing to notify unsuccessful job candidates of the outcome of their application.
  • Putting candidates through multiple tests and assessments without notifying them as to why these are being conducted in the first place.
  • Taking weeks to make a decision, leaving the job candidate in limbo.
  • Playing hardball on salary negotiations.
  • Getting job candidates to undertake pointless assessments (that is assessments not relevant to the job).
  • Interviewing a job candidate without researching their background, thus spending most of the time interviewing on things that could easily be found in their resume.
  • Conducting multiple interviews without any feedback.
  • Successfully selling your organisation to potential job candidates and then not bothering to get back to your shortlist, as another priority comes up.
  • Conducting stress interviews.
  • Not being courteous and thoughtful at each stage of the process.
  • Expecting job candidates to spend hours dedicated to proving themselves and their worth.
  • Throwing unsolicited resumes into the trashcan without even acknowledging receipt.
  • Not providing effective feedback to job candidates that were not selected.
  • Not providing job candidates with (shock horror) a real email address.

If you responded yes, to any of the above, then you have a problem and you need to improve how you treat job candidates. Why?

Well, the labour market has become fully transparent, thanks to the ‘sharing economy’.

  • Did you know 2 out of the 3 job applicants that had a bad experience of your company would never buy a product or service from your company?
  • That 4 out of 5 share their poor experience with their network. So if you averaged 1,000 job candidates (for roughly 10 advertised jobs), 800 people were influenced in a negative way about your company. This could reach critical mass.
  • That 80% of candidates with a poor experience will no longer recommend your company to other people.
  • That it is more than likely that these job candidates will not bother applying again, even if they were the perfect fit for a new opportunity.
  • That all your investment in employee branding is wasted, as people won’t remember your glossy website, but they will remember how you made them feel.

On the flip side, if you invested in candidate care, over time you should see an improvement in candidate quality, you could keep candidates interested in future opportunities, turn former applicants into brand advocates and protect and enhance your brand.

Look, we know that no matter what happens, the vast majority of job candidates are going to be disappointed. But you don’t have to add ‘fuel to the fire’ by not bothering to even acknowledge their existence, when they have taken the time and effort to apply to your job and shown an explicit interest in your company.

When My Career Groove surveyed skilled job seekers, their pet peeve was not hearing back from recruiters and employers. In fact a staggering 70.5% ranked this as their top concern about the current recruitment process.

So the great news is, by focussing on candidate care, you will easily outshine your competition when it comes to attracting talent and building your employer brand.

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