Keep in touch: How to create a top notch candidate experience

We’ve all been there, or know someone who has experienced the following scenario – You apply for numerous positions online to receive the generic “Thanks – we’ll get back to you” email response, or even get in touch with an actual recruiter at some point to never hear back from them again.  Then that’s it – welcome to the Black Hole.  Frustrating, right?

Not only frustrating to the applicant that feels like they have wasted their time and now feel rejected, for a Talent Acquisition team, it also puts a dark mark on employment branding, which everyone in Talent Acquisition is looking to avoid. As TA Professionals, how can we change this and improve our somewhat negative reputation on this issue?

I think the key of course is communication.  Simple enough – but when you have several projects in play and the other 20 miscellaneous things that must be addressed daily, it can definitely become a challenge.  There is hope – if you learn how to smartly manage candidate pipelines and create worthwhile messages, you’re on the road to ensuring candidates are kept in the loop, feeling the love and receiving a positive candidate experience they will tell everyone about.

Stay on top of your incoming – or shut it off.  Some of us are lucky enough to have a healthy pipeline of incoming applicants.  It’s nice to be wanted; however, if you want to continue to be wanted, make sure you are dispositioning candidates in a timely manner and sending out those regret emails.  If you’re incoming is just too much to keep up with then shut it off!  Don’t continue to bury yourself in candidates you have no time to review.

Reminders are your best friend.  Create a schedule of reminders to make sure you are extending communications to your candidates on a regular basis.  Outlook is good for this, even your run of the mill CRM should have a follow up reminder tool.  Some candidates may need a higher touch and not forgetting about them is essential.

Know their preferred line of communication.  Everyone is different – some prefer the phone, some like email better, and I’ve noticed more recently, some like text messages.  Figure out what form of communication your candidates respond best to and do what they prefer – not what YOU prefer.  You’ll find a better response rate when you are aligned with your candidate.

Keep it simple and friendly.  People are busy – sending them a quick message that is easy to read and understand with no spelling/grammatical errors is so much more appreciated than a long drawn out email that makes no sense. Take the time to craft your message ahead of time and you’ll get a better result in the end.

Consistent, smart communication is an essential ingredient in providing a positive candidate experience.  By focusing on this, you’ll see a better return on quality candidates and also meet your hiring goals faster.  A positive candidate experience will make a huge impact on retaining quality candidates and hiring top talent. Keep in touch!

By Jessica Oberto | People Science Director of Process Engineering

From our inception in 1997, companies have relied on People Science to “break the code” of their toughest and most complicated recruiting efforts. Acknowledging the importance of taking a fresh approach when in a War for Talent, we challenge ourselves to create processes, methodology and “out of the box” recruiting ideas to bring resolution to our clients’ critical staffing goals. As a result we have completed many RPO projects in our tenure and consider ourselves pioneers in the field of Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO). People Science provides End to End, Augmentation and Project RPO Services.

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