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Candidate Experience Journey, Part 2: Interviews And Onboarding

Posted by Amy Onorato

In the first part of our Candidate Experience journey, we explored ways companies engage with top talent before they apply, and how employers can use social media, career pages and job boards to maximize reach.

Now, we move on to the next part of the process — the post-apply stage. At this point, candidates have already submitted their resumes and are competing for a chance to work for your company.

With this stage of the hiring journey comes many challenges. Without a strategy, recruiters risk losing top talent to competitors and missing out on qualified candidates who may have gotten lost in the “black hole.”

Job seekers who don’t hear back are 3.5 times more likely to not re-apply for a different position, and more than 70 percent will share their bad experiences with their peers.

The consequences of a bad candidate experience at this stage can also impact the way job seekers view your company (in some cases, they may also be customers, after all.) Job seekers who don’t hear back are 3.5 times more likely to not re-apply for a position, and more than 70 percent will share their bad experiences with their peers. That's a big “no-no” when it comes to employer brand.

Here’s our breakdown:

First Touch

According to a recent CareerBuilder study, communication during the interview process is one of the biggest concerns for active job seekers. Around 81 percent of job seekers say regular updates on the status of their application would greatly improve candidate experience, with 53 percent saying they wanted to have some idea on hiring timelines from the start.

A post-application email is the first touch recruiters have with talent after they submit their resume.

Use this opportunity to:

  • Showcase your company careers page or culture video to help candidates learn about what it’s like to work for your company.
  • Have candidates sign up for a newsletter with company updates and job openings to keep them interested in what’s going on at your organization.
  • Outline a timeframe for when you’ll be getting in touch.

Note: While 33 percent of candidates say a post-application email is an important part of their interview experience, there are other ways to get in touch too. Learn more about how Convey for Communication can provide immediate responses, along with a personal touch.

The Screening Interview and Beyond

Screening candidates is perhaps the hardest (and most time-consuming) part of the hiring journey for recruiters. Resume volume is at its peak, which could leave recruiters with not enough time to get back to everyone who applied. There’s also that tedious game of phone tag recruiters often play to get qualified candidates in for an interview, which could add weeks to the process.

Consider these options:

Standardizing Interviews

Make sure your hiring team has a set of standard interview questions in place, allowing you to evaluate all candidates off the same criteria. This will help weed out unqualified or less passionate candidates.

Digital Interviewing

Digital interviewing allows candidates to complete interviews on their own time, saving time and effort when it comes to scheduling. Convey for Interviewing also allows recruiters and hiring managers to review and discuss candidates all on one platform — keeping everyone on the same page.

Regular Status Updates

Remember, 65 percent of candidates are applying for other opportunities while they’re engaged with your hiring journey, and they don’t wait around. A weekly email or text message keeps talent engaged, while also letting you know whether or not they’re still interested in the position.

Offer Letter, Acceptance…And Rejections

After rounds of interviews, you’ve finally found that perfect candidate, and they’ve decided to accept your job offer — great! But according to CareerBuilder, 40 percent of candidates say communication with an employer slows down once they’ve accepted a job offer — kind of crazy, since they’re about to be onboarded, right?

What you can do:

  • Provide materials candidates may need to prepare for the on-boarding process.
  • Keep the line of communication open in case they have questions.

What about those who didn’t make the cut? Job seekers who have a positive candidate experience are more likely to apply again in the future, so it’s important to leave them feeling good about the interview process.

  • Offer Feedback: Give candidates some perspective as to why they may not have received an offer at this particular time.
  • Ask for Feedback: Ask candidates to comment on the interview process — you never know what you’ll learn.