Mackie Myers

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How to create a positive candidate experience?

Interview processes can be long, vigorous and complex. However, with 93% of employers looking to hire this year it is clear to see why the market is strongly in candidates’ favour. With this level of competition, we don’t have to tell you that it’s difficult to attract talent at the minute. However, by creating a positive candidate experience you will heighten your chances of securing your chosen candidate. And here is how to do it…

Structure and a timeline…

The structure and timeline of the interview process is imperative. In a recent survey, 83% of candidates said the overall recruitment experience could be greatly improved if employers provided a clear timeline of the hiring process. Additionally, 60% of candidates have quit midway through a job application process because of its length and complexity. Therefore, maintaining momentum is imperative in keeping candidates engaged. Our advice…from briefing the agency through to offering the role, the process should take no longer than three to four weeks.

At the point where you have successfully appointed the chosen candidate to the role, you cannot simply put your feet up and assume the work is done. Counter offers and volume of roles makes the timeframe between a candidate handing in their notice and starting a new role a risky time. Ensure all the paperwork and contracts are sent out swiftly, maintain communication, and even better arrange a ‘meet the team’ day. Frequent contact and touch points when candidates are working their notice periods are beneficial to both parties and can provide an opportunity for you to truly cement the candidates decision. Let’s be honest, no candidate wants to hear radio silence after they accept a job.

Tech vs Human Approach…

The last two years has dramatically increased the use of tech when it comes to hiring. However, using tech to aid the process rather than de-humanise it is essential. The danger of AI creating automated questions and responses takes away from the personal element of the hiring process and can cause candidates to disengage. 84% of companies say that culture fit has become a key factor when recruiting, yet how can you truly gage culture fit from a computer screen? Whilst the pandemic has created flexibility, it has meant many interviews have been conducted online. Arguably, whilst this has accelerated the speed of hiring processes, meeting a candidate in person offers the greatest opportunity for genuine engagement and should be considered at all levels.  Our recommendation is a two staged process, one shortly after the other. Combining an online stage and a face to face stage to ensure candidates are getting the best of both worlds, and leaving all parties more satisfied.

Two way conversations…

It might sound obvious, but this decision is one that works both ways. The candidate will need to buy into your organisation and what you’re offering, so it is important you are selling the good, bad and ugly as much as they are to you. The pandemic has changed people’s priorities and understanding each individuals motivating factors is going to ensure you are better prepared to personalise the recruitment process to that person, thus improving the candidate experience.  For those that are unsuccessful, providing feedback and constructive criticism is not to be underestimated. An applicant who has rejected and gets no feedback is twice as likely not to apply or do business with that company again, not to mention the fact that 64% of candidates who experience a negative hiring process would share that with their friends and family.

At Mackie Myers, we strive to ensure candidates’ experiences throughout each interview processes are positive and advise our clients in a way that we can deliver this to them. After all, great people deserve great experiences.

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