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8 key ingredients for becoming more candidate-centric

‘We just aren’t getting applications’

‘We’re losing people in the process’

‘It takes too long to place a candidate; our teams can’t cope with the pressure’

All the things we hear from clients’ time and time again. The recruiting world has changed over the last few years, and it really is a job seekers market now. So, employers really have to think about what jobseekers want to see in order to attract the right talent.

Many of our clients come to us with the problems above, not knowing what to do to keep candidates engaged through a process. The answer is really quite simple, put them first.

But how? I hear you ask. Below we’ve come up with our own list of core ingredients we think employers should use to spice up their process and make it more candidate-centric.

1. Transparency

“I know what to expect”

Whilst some people love a bit of the unknown in their personal life, many aren’t so keen when it comes to looking for their next employer. So be clear on who you are, and how your process runs. Provide access to information that allows jobseekers to make an informed decision about their personal fit with the role and the organisation. In addition to a clearly articulated and targeted EVP, create transparency regarding flexible work arrangements, culture, career development and benefits. Highlight your organisation’s commitment to DE&I, corporate social responsibility, mission and values.

Candidate experience doesn’t start at the point of application, it comes way before that. In fact, about 48% of job seekers have some form of interaction with an employer before applying so building a positive brand perception is important.

It’s not just all about knowing who you are as a brand, people want to know what to expect from a process, i.e:

  • Are there assessments?
  • How many interviews will I go through?
  • What time frame am I looking at?

These are really important questions for job seekers, so answer them. Including a clear ‘What to expect’ section within your careers pages will go a long way towards attracting an engaged audience.

2. Simplicity

“This is easy”

Remember, candidates are often applying to numerous organisations at once. Complex, repetitive processes are an immediate turn-off. Make the application journey as smooth as possible by embedding smart technology like resume parsing, social sign-in, and chatbots, which can simplify the steps and make life easier for candidates.

The length of the initial application is a factor for 66% of candidates in determining whether they’ll complete and submit it. More than 70% of job seekers said they will not submit a job application if it takes longer than 15 minutes to complete.

3. Tailored

“I’m treated as an individual”

From attraction messaging to the application and selection processes, the experience feels appropriately personalised. This includes having personalised feedback, according to a report by Greenhouse, where more than 60% of job seekers said that receiving feedback during the interview process, even if they did not receive a job offer, would make them more inclined to apply for future jobs with that company.

How a company treats candidates throughout the application, interview and onboarding process, directly impacts how interested a candidate is in the role or the company in general. The top three reasons candidates withdrew from the recruiting process were:

  • having their time disrespected during interviews (37%)
  • having a poor rapport with recruiters (32%)
  • finding that the process took too long (29%)

4. Speed

“That didn’t take long”

More than ever before, applications need to be short, to the point and user-friendly on every device to capture all the right candidates. Reducing the length of your application process is a proven practice, with those less than five minutes increasing application conversion by 365%.

5. Clarity

“I know what’s going on”

For 81% of candidates, the one main thing that would greatly improve their overall Candidate Experience is employers communicating status updates to them on a continuous basis. It’s important to make sure that you engage with candidates on their own terms. One way to do this is to create touch points across a variety of channels, potentially via live engagements such as chat sessions, either 1:1 or with a group.

Ultimately, candidates want to be able to find answers in their own time, so you need to provide a number of ways to engage with them, bearing in mind that people expect instant answers - they aren’t prepared to wait days or weeks.

6. Support

“I feel supported”

One thing that can help set you apart from other employers is providing strong candidate support throughout a process and beyond. It’s important to make sure candidates have all the information they need throughout a process so that they don’t have any unnecessary worry at various stages.

One way to do this could be to provide useful information ahead of time, such as video guides on the interview process, how to set up their equipment and properly prepare.

Constant touch points and helpful information will keep candidates at ease during the process.

7. Value

“I’m getting something out of this”

Whether they are successful or not in the process, candidates want to feel like they are getting something out of their application experience. This could be from in-process skills sessions to post-interview feedback.

In process events also provide opportunities for candidates to learn more about an industry, speak to employers about the skills needed and learn vital insights into what they can expect from a process.

A recent survey from Criteria shows that 91% of candidates agree that they like receiving feedback on their assessment results. Satisfaction throughout the hiring process, regardless of the outcomes, makes candidates more likely to consider that organisation again in the future with 62% of candidates valuing this feedback.

8. Feeling

“I’m enjoying this”

It may well be an outdated myth that candidates don’t want to take assessments.

Every candidate’s goal is to demonstrate their potential, and candidates view assessments as another way to do just that.

Game-based assessments won’t appeal to every candidate in every industry. But for the right audiences, they can enhance the candidate experience and help the organisation stand out as an employer of choice.

Ultimately, it’s about creating a positive experience for candidates that they would then recommend to others. A majority of candidates (over 60%)talk about their experiences with friends and family so making them feel valued through the process is imperative for any employer.

If you want to talk about improving your candidate attraction, contact our Employer Value Proposition specialists.

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