Skip to main content

Candidate experience or… REVERSE thinking in HR

Have you ever applied for a job and never heard back after your application? Or did it take forever for the company to give you any feedback after your interview?

Well, I did…and it obviously didn’t leave me with the best impression of the companies in question.

Did you know that nearly 60% of candidates have had a poor candidate experience somewhere, and 72% of those candidates shared that experience online or with someone directly (CareerArc, 2016)?

Just imagine the damage to your (corporate) reputation when you consider the idea that these candidates applying, can also (potential) customers! Bad experiences leads to a negative Net Promotor Score (NPS) which is likely one of the leading KPI’s in your marketing department. There is a lot you can do to protect and even strengthen your company’s (employer) brand reputation in order to transform your candidates into fans.

So, let’s start by thinking REVERSE. Let’s start with the end goal in mind – what kind of process would you need in order to land your perfect hire?

Thinking REVERSE means starting with the end-goal in mind when designing your recruitment process and making the candidate experience your most important metric. What do you want the candidates to experience and what kind of impression you want to leave with them after their application? Work your way back to visualise the ideal candidate journey instead of starting the process with only you as a stakeholder. When you make candidate experience is leading in your recruitment process, the outcome of your hiring process will always have a positive impact on your brand.

So here’s my 5-step process and REVERSE-style, let’s just start with number 5!

Step 5: On-boarding

Welcoming your new hires in your organisation is an essential part of the recruiting and HR management process. On-boarding is becoming ever more popular recently and it should be. It’s the strategic link between recruitment and HR, helping to decrease turnover and increase engagement. A good on-boarding programme helps new hires to understand the company’s culture, the existing customers, job requirements and expectations, communication preferences, and more. The use of specialized onboarding apps can help manage your employee onboarding processes with the right content and automation levels. Make sure that your on-boarding matches your recruitment and matches your HR in a seamless experience.

Step 4: The job offer

Have you ever thought how you present the job offer? Is it a functional step or a milestone where you can make a lasting impression. How do you deliver the offer? The job offer is a great way to create engagement and should preferably be delivered by the hiring manager. Do it fast, by phone, showing the candidate the value and asking for a form of commitment. Seems easy enough…

Step 3: Screening / Interviews

The online or offline interview is where the candidate meets your company in the flesh for the very first time. It’s your first impression. Giving your candidates a VIP experience means that every candidate is welcomed like they are a potential client. Present your candidates with a process that is accessible, fast and free from bias. Offer the opportunity to meet online for example and allow candidates to pick an available time from your calendar. Some companies prefer “casting days” above on-site interviews. During a casting day, potential candidates are put through a series of situations (think of escape rooms for example) to assess if they are the perfect fit for the job. An experience your candidate will remember!

Step 2: The application process

Keep in mind the 2-day rule and send your candidate a confirmation on the application. Do you use a traditional process and screen the candidates yourself, or do you have software implemented into your system to make the process more automated? Using software helps create a consistent experience. Screening tools like video interviews can enhance your brand identity as long as you use the technology to make the process more personal. Today’s application process should be dialogue-based with short fragments of information rather than mile-long application forms after password protected forms.

Step 1: Finding a job

The very start of building your employer brand – your career website. Candidates are always on the lookout to gain more information on potential new employers. A good career page/ employer website enables you to present your company as a great place to work and introduce potential new employees to all important aspects of your employer brand. What is the culture like, wat sets you apart from other employers in the field, and what are the benefits of working at your company? Make sure that keep an eye on your distributed online brand presence with website such as Glassdoor. It will help you get a realistic perspective on your reputation.

In the end, it’s all about being the brand and employer your candidates want to work for and build their career(s). Sounds easy? In reality it is all about managing expectations and making the candidate experience the beating heart of your recruitment. Key to having a good employer brand is to deliver the best possible candidate experience, always. Start with the end in mind.


Happy Hiring!

Infographic | 10 recruiting trends to watch for in 2017 | Download