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What Is Candidate Experience and How Can It Impact Your Business?

When people are applying for jobs, they are hoping that their CV and cover letter set them apart from the rest of the applicants. But, they aren’t the only ones who need to prove themselves during the interview and hiring process.

We’ve all gone through negative customer service experiences and it is becoming increasingly more common for job applicants and candidates to experience similar things during their journey to finding and securing a new job. Going through a bad experience during the process will influence the candidate’s decision on whether or not they accept your job offer. Going through a negative experience means that an applicant’s emotions and feelings towards your company will change, and they will offload these experiences to family, friends and even online.

With so much scope for change and influence on a company’s reputation or brand, it is vital that employers now strive to create a positive candidate experience. But, where do you start? What is candidate experience? How can it have an impact on your company?

What Is Candidate Experience?

People can change the way in which they view the company they are interviewing for during the process. Now that technology and social media have such a huge influence on the overall hiring process, even just a negative review or comment can impact massively on the way that you recruit. Around 55% of job seekers are known to actively avoid applying for companies if they have read a negative review online. Once a negative post is out there, then you will have to go through damage control and limitations, which can be much more unpredictable. So, what are the experiences that a candidate can have?

Positive Experience

There are many ways that you can make a candidate’s experience a positive one. One of the easiest ways is to have a simple application process. If someone who is interested in your company is faced with an over the top, lengthy application then they may get distracted halfway through, costing you a potentially quality applicant. Make your application easy to read and fill out and most of all – mobile-friendly.

You should also be communicative throughout the whole process with each person who has applied. We’ve all been there, when we’ve applied for a job, received a generic, automatic response and then not received any further communication. When an applicant is kept informed regarding their status throughout, then they will naturally develop a higher level of respect for the company, even if they are rejected.

This should also occur before and after the interview stage. Let the candidate know who they will be meeting with and give them further insight into the company. Following the interview, thank them for their time and give them a time-frame for when you will have made your decision. Even if they aren’t successful, let them know via an email.

Negative Experience

Unfortunately, most job seekers will go through a negative experience on their journey. There are many ways in which a candidate experience can be negative. If a job posting has a lengthy and complex application process, then 60% of candidates are likely to quit before they finish it. When candidates are successful during the application stage and find themselves attending multiple screenings over a series of days, to then find that “someone else was chosen for the role” in a robotic email with little to no constructive feedback on their application, then you run the risk of receiving bad feedback.

When it comes to the interview process, if a candidate isn’t greeted enthusiastically, asked a multitude of boring and predictable questions and given little to no information on the job role that they have applied for, then even if they are offered the job, it is highly unlikely they will accept.

How Can Candidate Experience Impact Your Company

41% of applicants who have had a poor candidate experience will avoid further interacting with the company and 34% of candidates who have had a bad experience will share all on social media. However, there are multiple benefits which come from ensuring you give candidates a positive experience.

When the candidate’s expectations are met during the process, then you will reap the rewards that come with it. First impressions are important, and if you make a lasting one then applicants are much more likely to want to become a member of the team and are more likely to become a long-term employee. By optimising your candidate experience, then the efficiency of your internal communications and processes will naturally be better and this will then reduce your hiring costs.

With more and more applicants coming from overseas, it is vital that if this is something you offer as a company, that you are prepared for any questions or queries which they have. This is a huge change for them and as their potential employer, you must aim to make this as seamless as possible. A large majority of overseas applicants have turned down a job offer if they feel as though their employer isn’t prepared for their arrival. Important factors for overseas applicants include information on local commuting networks, transport links and if they are moving over with their family, then their interests will lie in family visa applications and school enrolling processes.

Conclusion

In today’s highly competitive job market, establishing an early good candidate experience is essential for the long-term success of your business. If you meet the expectations of your candidates with quick follow-ups and direct contact, then you will have a much better foundation in order to influence your company revenue.

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Written by Jamie Costello

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