One shining example of how much the world of recruiting is changing is the emergent importance of Candidate Experience (“CX”). It wasn’t long ago that finding a candidate was the key to filling jobs, and certainly, many times finding a candidate was a hard enough challenge for companies.
Today, times are different thanks to technology tools, job boards, and social networking sites. You might be able to find candidates, but having a great job isn’t enough to win them over. To attract the talent you need to succeed, your challenge is now engaging those candidates by providing a great experience so that they want to work for you.
Candidates expect to be treated well. If you don’texercise great candidate care, not only will you lose top talent, you’ll damage your employer brand and risk losing future employee referrals. The Talent Board, responsible for the annual Candidate Experience Awards (CandEs), recently looked at data gleaned from some 250,000 completed surveys on the candidate experience (from North America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand). A quarter of the candidates who say they had a bad experience said they would go out of their way to discourage others from applying. And 60 percent of those who had a positive candidate experience said they would go out of their way to encourage others to apply.
Candidate Experience 2015 reveals many key findings into the current state of candidate experience, including:
- More sophisticated candidates: Candidates continue to take more control of their own journey; 76 percent conduct their own job search research across multiple channels prior to applying
- Onboarding becomes automated: More employers are leveraging onboarding solutions, with more than 60 percent using technology to automate forms management
- Interviews become more efficient: Employers are conducting fewer interviews per candidate, with 79 percent of companies now having one or two interviews related to a position, compared to 63 percent in 2014
- Mobile apply is still lagging: Although many technology providers have improved or enhanced their mobile capabilities, companies that offer mobile apply only see 8-10 percent of their candidates applying through a mobile device
- Candidate communication can be improved: Although most companies send an immediate automated “thank you,” nearly half of all candidates never receive an indication of the status of the application, and overall candidate communication has decreased from the application process to screening and dispositioning when compared to the 2014 CandE Research
Here are five key areas companies need to consider for an improved CX:
1.Your Application Process Have you ever applied to your own company ? A recent study from Jibe found that 37 percent of the 300 recruitment professionals surveyed were concerned that their company’s application process was deterring quality hires. Almost 23 percent of job seekers surveyed agreed with the statement that if they had issues filling out an online application, they’d never apply to that company again. Specifically, job seekers were most likely deterred from completing online applications if they encountered technological issues (60 percent), failed in their efforts to upload their resumes (55 percent) or couldn’t track their application’s status (44 percent). 43 percent of candidates spend 30 minutes or more on the average online application. 10 percent spend an hour or more. Do you really expect candidates to spend up to an hour to fill out your application? Focus instead on simplicity. There are plenty of automated application tools to help you streamline your application process. And make sure candidates have an elegant experience applying from a mobile device too, or you’ll lose out.
2.Preparing Candidates You’ve done a phone screen and you’re ready to bring a candidate in for the interviewing process. How are you preparing them? You might be surprised to learn that only 38.2% of candidates receive any information prior to their actual interview, other than the date and location. Some don’t even know with whom they are meeting. Certainly candidates should do their own research before interviewing, but why not prepare them? Give them insight into how the process will go, who they are meeting and why, information about your organization and EVP (employer value proposition). Tell them what they can expect and create a great first impression.
3.Improve Your Communication Generally speaking, how companies communicate with candidates through the process is notoriously poor. It starts with companies who never reply to applications but extends further to lacking/severely delayed communication once a candidate has engaged in your process (for instance, after an interview). Going beyond basic acknowledgement, companies can create a great CX by also giving feedback. Only 5% of candidates were given useful feedback by employers when notified that they were not selected. 55.9% reported not receiving any feedback in the first place. Another 20% of those that did were provided “general or limited feedback.” Giving some feedback drastically improves how candidates feel about you, which can boost your employer brand and also help you generate future referrals.
4.Ask for Feedback Besides giving feedback, are you asking for feedback from candidates? Have you ever dug into what candidates think of your application, your interviewing process, your company? This insight is invaluable in gaining an objective perspective on your process. Systematically collecting candidate feedback gives you data to help you justify changes you need to make vs relying on anecdotes or gut instinct. Afraid of the feedback you might receive? That’s natural, but you have to know where you are if you truly want to improve your CX and impact your ability to attract the best people.
5.Improve your Onboarding Onboarding starts from the moment you extend an offer. Once accepted, what is the experience? What are all of the touchpoints that take place before and after a new employee has started with your company? The first 90 days of employment are pivotal for building rapport with the company, management, and coworkers. Do you make it fun? How do you involve the new employee’s team? How do you prepare for their arrival? When do you check in to ensure things are going well? There are so many well-documented tools and checklists to create a great experience for new employees.
At Advanced RPO, we make talent acquisition your strategic advantage. Designing and executing the recruitment process is all we do, making us experts in all five aspects of CX best practices. Our application process is state of the art, communication is free flowing at each stage, and we actively collect feedback that we can help you learn from. We advise you on your onboarding practices so that candidate experience extends well into your new employee’s early stages with your organization, positioning them for success and higher, faster productivity.
To learn more about how Advanced RPO solutions can be the Rx for your CX, contact one of our RPO experts today.