Top 5 things to improve your candidate experience today
Candidates often have a multitude of options when it comes to planning their careers. Word-of-mouth and review sites give them ample opportunity to research and see what others have to say about working and interviewing with you. This has a direct impact on not only your talent brand, but your overall company brand. Many of your candidates could become customers down the line (or could be one already), and your customers are checking out these channels when they’re evaluating your products or services. This means that - as an employer - you need to differentiate yourself via your talent brand - the way you are presenting your jobs, and the experience you provide to candidates - just like a consumer brand needs to manage their brand, product, and customer experiences.
In that spirit, in honor of Candidate Experience Day, I thought I’d share my list of the top 5 things you can do to improve your candidate experience today.
- Remember the golden rule. Treat your candidates how you would want to be treated. Communicate consistently and often, let them know where they are in the process, provide them with feedback, and do what you say you’re going to do. Candidates don’t get to see everything that’s going on behind the scenes in the hiring process but helping them navigate that uncertainty and setting expectations goes a long way.
- Use a tool like Qualtrics to measure the candidate experience. Surveying your candidates can help you understand their experiences with you, from exploring opportunities on your website to their first day and beyond. This data will inform how you design differentiating candidate experiences that set the tone for how you are perceived in the marketplace - both from a talent and an overall brand perspective.
- Customize where possible. Make sure that each candidate feels valued and appreciated as they move throughout the process. Consider where and how you can customize your candidate communications and be thoughtful as you design your interview experience. Personalization and sharing the right content at the right time will help candidates picture themselves working with you and will show that you care about them as a person, in addition to exploring a future with them as a potential employee.
- Preparation is key. Help both interviewers and candidates prepare for the interview process. Train your employees on how to interview well and how to give a realistic job preview. Set expectations with the candidate on what the interview process looks like. Giving them the opportunity to truly prepare will help them be successful in the interview process and will streamline your interviews.
- Don’t forget about the digital experience. When was the last time you visited your careers website? Is it easy to navigate? Are candidates able to find the right opportunities based on their skills and interests? Can candidates get an idea of what it’s like to work at your company? Is it easy to apply? Look at your web traffic to get an idea of how candidates are spending their time on your site, check out your abandonment rates on your applications, and consider sharing employee stories on a channel like the Why Qualtrics stories on the Qualtrics Life Blog.
At the end of the day, data and experience design aside, the most important thing you can do for the candidate experience is to put yourself in the candidates’ shoes. As an employer, remember that changing jobs is a big deal: it’s a huge life event for someone, and being empathetic to that situation goes a long way. Treat others how you want to be treated and act like every candidate like your customer - because they may be someday.