I think about candidate experience a lot. I may even be a little bit obsessed with it!
Why? Because it dramatically affects the ability to attract and recruit the best talent for our clients.
We are living in a new era for Recruitment
- Candidate experience has never been so important or intrinsically tied to Employer Brand Reputation
- Talent attraction has never been more competitive
- Candidates expectations have never been higher, consumers generally of any service or product expect the best
Reputation is everything
I make it a rule only to work with companies that I feel are the best at what they do, with great reputations in the marketplace. Why? Because I have to recruit the top talent for them.
Representing a client’s brand effectively in the market is a key part of how we attract the best candidates. It demands a close relationship and building a partnership that ensures that candidates have a consistent, first-class experience from both the recruiter and the client organisation.
The cost of a poor experience
People have always talked about their bad experiences with an organisation. And many years ago, before we were all globally connected day and night, the impact was maybe not so catastrophic. The person concerned would tell their immediate friends and family and perhaps not use your organisation again.
But today it’s very different. Someone’s direct contacts can be hundreds or thousands of people. Social media means bad news is instantly transmitted, and review sites mean one individual can actively advise others (whom they have never met) not to consider you as an employer or indeed as a recruiter.
Of course, there’s the upside
Give candidates a fantastic experience, and it can help drive higher quality applicants, lower costs per hire and more efficient filling of vacancies.
We work closely with our clients to make sure that the foundations are in place to execute a successful interview and attraction process.
Candidate assessment versus candidate attraction
The market for top talent gets ever more competitive. So, we make it a priority with our clients to make sure their processes strike the right balance between candidate assessment and candidate attraction. Many companies just don’t understand that both are equally important for securing the best candidates.
No matter how wonderful what you do as an organisation is, if people don’t want to work for your company, you are going to struggle to attract the best people.
How can we deliver a consistently good candidate experience?
From an employer’s perspective, it demands an honest examination of what the candidate experience is like through your interview process. Does your current strategy engage candidates, have quick feedback turnarounds which champion your employee value propositions and promote the company to the candidate?
Here’s how we do it for the candidates we represent. We have broken down the candidate journey and mapped out every part of the engagement process. This starts withourmarket awareness and covers everything from initial candidate contact, interview process, feedback timelines and goes right through to offer management and post placement follow-ups. We have 12 main touchpoints and around 45 actions spread across them.
Once the journey’s broken down into bite-sized chunks, you can look at designing a standard process for each part. And once you have processes, you can measure how you are performing against them. Become obsessed with feedback from everyone you deal with and ensure that all your staff follow the processes. The result is a consistent service that delivers the same exceptional standards to each and every candidate.
Start mapping your candidate experience to make it the best it can be, and I guarantee you’ll see an improvement in the quality of your applicants.
What’s your approach to measuring candidate experience? Is it something you are currently doing? Or something you are thinking of implementing? Are you struggling to know where to start?