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The Importance of Candidate Experience Even in Times of Uncertainty

Aly Finkle
Tue, Apr 14, 2020

As you already know, the COVID-19 pandemic is disrupting millions of careers and companies around the world. Few professionals are not feeling the pressures and challenges of this situation, and that includes talent acquisition teams. 

Despite these uncertain times, many companies still are trying to operate as usual, including hiring new employees. But if you are working in talent acquisition, you know things are not business as usual right now. 

Your job candidates know it too. The hiring process always has been a little nerve-wracking for job seekers. Now they face even more variables. 

As a recruiter, it falls to you to ensure that job candidates still have a positive experience working with your company. It’s easy to let some details fall to the wayside with the world in crisis, but in times of uncertainty, keeping things streamlined and positive is more important than ever. 

Why the Candidate Experience Matters for Candidates

Many people mistakenly believe that only the candidates are trying to impress the employer, but you know it works the other way around too. Companies need to attract and woo the right candidates to acquire the best talent for their needs. 

When you’re trying to attract top talent for a company, every interaction matters. Savvy job candidates are always on the lookout for red flags during the hiring process. If anything happens that gives them pause, they may remove themselves from the running. 

Job candidates at this time are especially wary. In the current market, they can’t risk accepting a position at a company that is about to fold. One hint that things aren’t quite right, and they’ll look elsewhere. 

If you want to cater to strong job candidates, you have to look at your candidate experience from their perspective and consider how they perceive the company and are personally experiencing the hiring process. 

From the beginning, you and the hiring manager should do everything possible to put candidates at ease. Of course, they realize that you’re not operating under normal circumstances, but that’s all the more reason to put your best foot forward so that they trust the company. 

Job candidates hate a difficult hiring process, especially right now when so many aspects of life are suddenly challenging. Several hiring missteps on your part will discourage them from continuing, such as:

  • Confusing job descriptions.
  • A complex or lengthy application process.
  • An unresponsive recruiter or manager.
  • Too many interviews.
  • A convoluted hiring process.
  • A paltry salary or benefits package.

Job candidates also will drop out after negative interactions with a company. One report from LinkedIn found that 83 percent of candidates say a negative interview experience can change their opinion of a company. On top of following the standard interviewing rules, anyone who interviews your candidates right now should be extra sensitive to the challenges they may be facing during the pandemic.

Using good interviewing practices, attentive communication and a streamlined hiring process help candidates have a positive experience with companies and gives them the confidence to seek the opportunities those companies have to offer.

Why the Candidate Experience Matters for Companies

Having an open position is frustrating for a manager. It’s a struggle to find coverage for that work while not overworking other team members. The faster they can hire a great new employee, the better. 

That’s why it’s such a waste of everyone’s time when a company neglects the job candidate experience and loses promising talent as a result. If your hiring managers already are overwhelmed with managing teams during the pandemic, they don’t have time to vet and interview candidates who only are going to drop out. 

The company also runs the risk of losing all of their best candidates. The best workers know their worth. If your candidate experience doesn’t demonstrate that you recognize their worth too, they’ll leave and the company will have to settle on candidates with fewer qualifications. This can hurt a company in the long run. 

Speaking of the long run, any pitfalls in the current candidate experience might be temporary as a company deals with the effects of current world events, but a poor reputation is difficult to fix. Companies that have a weak employer brand or receive low hiring reviews online now will continue to face the consequences later.

Prioritize Your Candidate Experience 

SelectOne knows you have a lot to figure out right now. If you see details of your candidate experience slipping while everyone adjusts to new work dynamics, we can help. 

Our talent acquisition solutions get you the results you need under any circumstances. Contact us today to hear our recommendations.

Button - Read Guide to Hiring for the Future When Times are Uncertain

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