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Best 8 Tips to Boost Candidate Experience

October 27, 2022

Talent sourcing and acquisition are only becoming more intense and competitive with each passing day. The demand for skilled candidates is eminently high and recruiters are aggressively reaching out to top talent to fulfil it. 

Amidst the current landscape – attracting, engaging and hiring great talent is largely driven by your employer brand. With the workforce having more choices than ever, serving positive candidate experience holds the key to successful recruitment. You never want to lose out on top talent; the only way to ensure that is to provide multi-dimensional support to your hiring efforts. 

If you’re wondering why candidate experience is so important today – 78% of candidates say their overall candidate experience is an indicator of how a company values its people, and hence helps them decide whether or not they should consider working there. Moreover, a large chunk of candidates who are interviewed share their experiences publicly - especially if not so good. 

Recruitment has become more of marketing and word of mouth undoubtedly plays a crucial role. If you have been in the talent acquisition space for a while now, you probably know how impactful social recruiting is for employers now. That adds up to the reason why optimizing your hiring processes for serving engaging and effective experiences.

The bigger question is - how can recruiters and organizations ensure quality recruitment experience for their candidates? How the numerous aspects involved in talent sourcing and hiring can be transformed for catering to their expectations? In this blog, we answer all of these and more. Let’s dive straight in for an insightful discussion about candidate experience and top tips to improve it.

What is Candidate Experience?

Before analyzing why quality candidate experience is vital for employers and going into tips to build it, you should first clearly know what defines candidate experience. At a ground level, the impression of an employer on candidates across sourcing, engaging, recruitment, onboarding and post-hiring stages covers candidate experience. It might sound really simple but is a dynamic and constructive process. 

Why? A lot of factors influence candidates’ experience during the recruitment journey. In both the cases of inbound and outbound talent sourcing, these factors drive candidate decisions when it comes to joining a company. 

It starts even before a candidate is assessed or applies for your open positions – from your website career section, job ads and outreach followed by the application process and further recruitment steps. The objective is to make the hiring process better, faster, easy and overall seamless for your candidates.

It’s evident that impactful candidate experience boosts your employer brand, spreads great word of mouth for your recruitment campaigns and helps you attract and engage quality talent. Now in order to achieve such powerful objectives, recruiters need to work on each touchpoint of the candidate's journey. Remember that all the people who apply to your open roles are part of the candidate experience we’re talking about. So you need to consider all the engagement and experience-building activities.

Why Improving Candidate Experience will Help You Hire Better Talent?

Going a level deeper, let’s now figure out why enhancing your candidate experience is the key to attracting quality talent. Here are the top 3 reasons:

#1 It helps build relationships 

Modern recruitment is all about following the community approach where recruiters establish relationships with candidates. A great recruitment experience enables you to leave a positive impression on candidates. Hence, regardless of the results – all the candidates you engage end up being satisfied with the process. Over 60% of job seekers have had a poor candidate experience once in their careers. But what’s truly surprising is – 72% have shared their experience on online employer review sites such as Glassdoor. 

Building relationships with candidates further encourages the unsuccessful candidates to apply again to your open positions, which is what you often want. On the other hand, candidates who didn’t have a good experience while recruiting with you would not only avoid your brand themselves but also share the experience with their networks.

#2 Fuels up your employer brand 

Boost in employer brand is both a consequence and cause of improvement in candidate experience. When your organization values its candidates in the same way it does for employees – the credibility significantly increases and people are more likely to apply for open roles. Additionally, an optimized hiring journey with consistent communication and engagement allows candidates to know your culture well. Feedback from candidates is useful in promoting your employer brand as an employer of choice for the workforce.

#3 Significantly increases the offer acceptance rate

Candidate ghosting – especially at the offer acceptance stage has become a humongous challenge for recruiters today. Although the reasons for not doing so vary for different candidates, serving a prolific candidate experience will make sure you reduce the drop-off rate and maximize your offer acceptance ratio. The recruitment process when streamlined, keeps candidates positively engaged and helps you stay on track with your hiring requirements. The overall candidate experience has a larger impact than you think and it might well make or break their decision of joining your company.

Top 8 Tips to Enhance Your Candidate Experience

Much like you filter out candidates and choose the one who fits the best to your requirements, company culture and team – candidates also choose the employer who suits them the best. And they have every right to do so. Given the current recruitment market scenario, it’s totally expected of qualified talent to make decisions and choose among a variety of top-notch employers. As a recruiter, you cannot do much with intense talent sourcing efforts as much as you can by optimizing the candidate experience. 

Only 46% of employers report regularly upgrading their recruitment processes that affect the candidate experience. If you’re a recruiter willing to work on your candidate experience but clueless about the implementation – here are the top 8 tips you cannot miss out on.

  1. Optimize Your Application Process

First things first, your application form doesn’t need four to five pages of rigorous data collection. Infact long and complex application process is the primary reason why you aren't receiving many good candidates at the top of your recruitment funnel. Analyze what you absolutely need in your application form and keep it minimal - the shorter the better.

60% of job seekers report they have quit an application due to its length or complexity. The most common mistake companies do is that they recollect all the information which is already there on resumes even after asking candidates to upload them. One of the primary deciding factors for talent, the application process needs to be quick, engaging, short and meaningful enough for candidates too. 

  1. Frame Job Descriptions Effectively

The job descriptions that you share with candidates via email or through job boards should consist of comprehensive information surrounding the role requirements and company culture. When we say thorough information – it doesn’t need to be necessarily long. At the end of the day, no one really likes to read the long stuff and this is another factor contributing to the drop-off rate. 

Provide candidates with what they usually look for – the highlights section for job descriptions.

Don’t miss out on the necessary fields including job title, location, responsibilities, experience required, work environment and basic details about what candidates can expect from the role and company.

  1. Communicate Consistently

65% of job seekers say they never or rarely receive notice of their application status. Isn't that a huge number? It’s a basic expectation of candidates to be informed about their application status when they apply to open roles. As a recruiter, you have a lot on your plate at any given time but you still need to inform even the rejected candidates about the results of your screening/ interviewing. 

Effective communication holds the foundation for all positive candidate experiences and organizations can set up automated emails to keep candidates updated about the recruitment status after each stage gets over. Timely updates not only help you deliver quality candidate experience but also accelerate your overall hiring process.

  1. Provide Adequate Support

Chatbots on career pages are more helpful than you think of them to be. Additionally, applicants often seek support from recruiters and hiring managers. Whether it is an assessment-related query or concerns specific to different roles – your talent team needs to be accessible throughout the recruitment process. Emails should be responded to within 2 working days of receiving them. Providing options to connect over multiple channels like WhatsApp, LinkedIn and more would add up to the candidate experience as job seekers are assured of reliable support. The drop-off rate would also decrease with constant support.

  1. Be Flexible 

As a recruiter, you cannot ask candidates to appear for meetings and interviews at a specific time slot on a given day. Although they might not deny it in most cases, you should still give them options to choose from via scheduling tools for flexible candidate experience and to avoid back and forth. This must be practised for remote assessments like technical or aptitude tests as well. Additionally, after each stage of the recruitment is successfully completed – the scheduling option can be added at the end for a faster hiring cycle and seamless candidate experience.

  1. Assign a Dedicated Point of Contact

Different recruiters from a team contacting the same employees creates a lot of confusion that can be avoided for a better candidate experience. Assessment and interviews can be conducted by department heads, leads, hiring managers or anyone else as per requirement. However, the point of contact (POC) has to be one assigned person who will handle all the communication with candidates. 

This should be cleared when screening the candidates as it helps them stay up-to-date with the recruitment stages. Having 1:1 conversations would reduce the drop-off rate among candidates and recruiters can also extract insights to find out what’s working and what isn’t.

  1. Nurture Candidates in Your Talent Pool

Passive sourcing is topping the charts all around in terms of meeting talent requirements and the quality of hire. Unlike active talent sourcing, you need to create and nurture your organization’s talent pool. Once you have sourced enough candidates, it’s time to launch nurture campaigns which are aimed at adding value and empowering candidates.

 To build meaningful relationships with candidates and maximize your chances of hiring them, encouraging them consistently would help. How do we accomplish that? By educating them about the specifics of the role and by sharing the ins and outs of the company – you truly nurture your candidates. Keep in mind that the campaign is primarily about nudging them to apply and prepare for your job roles.  

  1. Predefine Entire Recruitment Timelines

One of the most underrated recruitment tactics, predefining the talent assessment and onboarding timelines helps candidates prepare better. Irregular flow of processes is common in recruitment and often leads to candidate drop-offs or ghosting. Before the first round of assessment begins, recruiters must inform candidates about each stage of the interview and the estimated time period to be expected. 

It immensely helps candidates in avoid any last-minute panic too. The objective here is to keep complete transparency in the recruitment process and accelerate your hiring activities as per requirement – both of which contribute heavily to the candidate experience.  

Ace Your Candidate Experience With Recruitment Automation

After analyzing what candidate experience means, the challenges involved and ways to improve it – we came to know the need of the hour is candidate engagement and experience optimization at scale with seamless execution. It’s exactly what Nurturebox enables you and your talent teams to accomplish with automation. With end-to-end sourcing, outreach and engagement automation – Nurturebox empowers talent teams to scale up their talent acquisition efforts while optimizing the recruitment processes. 

From LinkedIn outreach at scale to personalized nurture email sequences and adding candidates directly to your ATS, Nurturebox’s Chrome extension makes recruitment simpler and ensures a superior candidate experience. The best part? It integrates with your existing tech stack effortlessly so that you don’t need to do the heavy work of migrating candidate data. If you’re a recruiter looking to fill multiple positions and struggling with consistent candidate engagement and hence, experience – Nurturebox is the go-to solution for all your needs. Get started with sourcing and engaging candidates through LinkedIn now.

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