If you wanted a date with the woman of your dreams, would you treat all women poorly until you found what you were looking for? This tactic doesn’t work in the business relationship world, either. Unfortunately, research shows that your company probably isn’t getting the message.
Candidate experience is a non-negotiable in today’s world of online business reviews, scathing blogs, and honest texts. Still, companies insist on treating candidates like they don’t matter until they find “the one.” This is a huge mistake. Here’s why:
Customer Loss Starts with a Bad Brand.
A less-than-stellar candidate experience loses sales, big time. After job candidates were surveyed, here’s what their answers revealed:
- 69 percent of job seekers say they are less likely to buy from a company they had a bad experience with during the interview process.
- 65 percent of job seekers say they are less likely to buy from a company they didn’t hear back from after an interview.
- 58 percent of job seekers say they are less likely to buy from a company they didn’t hear back from after submitting an application.
- 45 percent of job seekers say they are less likely to buy from a company they received a low offer letter from.
- 9 percent will tell others not to purchase products or services from the company.
Additionally, the majority of candidates say they are more likely to buy from a brand after a positive candidate experience.
It’s crucial that companies don’t walk away from these statistics believing they are not part of the problem. An overwhelming amount of job seekers complain that they are completely flaked on, often after a company has initiated contact with them first. It’s not rare for candidates to be stood up for phone interviews or emailed for appointment set-up only to never hear back from the company again. Just sending follow up email to candidates letting them know their resume has been received, or they are not the appropriate applicant at this time, can go a long way.
Employment Brand Counts as Company Brand.
If you treat a candidate poorly during an interview, the world will know. Review websites like Glassdoor leave clients, customers, and prospective job candidates one google search away from their corporate reputations.
Have you noticed roles like community manager, community relations associate, and brand ambassador have become increasingly popular? These roles put out online fires created by bad branding experiences. They also create the forcefield of a good online presence.
Every time you create a bad candidate experience, you are training anti-community managers, anti-community relations associates, and anti-brand ambassadors to deface your brand.
Your “employment brand” should be as strong as your company brand. Hire candidates with the company integrity your organization uses to sell products, provide services, and manage clients.
Bad Candidate Experience Impacts Future Hiring
This consequence is the most important.
When candidates have a bad experience:
- 42 percent of candidates will never seek employment at the company again.
- 22 percent will tell others not to work there.
- 69 percent of job seekers would not take a job with a company that has a bad reputation.
It is estimated that hiring a bad candidate costs the company 30 percent of the employee’s first-year potential earnings.
The most valuable takeaway from these statistics: Choosing the wrong candidate is not the only issue that costs your company qualified workers. Creating candidate experiences that repel future job seekers with bad reputation and branding is just as costly. When you treat one interviewer poorly, you send that message out to their friends, family, and online communities instantaneously.
Candidate Experience Doesn’t Need to Cost You Money
1. If you aren’t interested in reading cover letters or extra materials, don’t ask for them.
An SHRM survey found that most HR applicants do not consider a missing cover letter an application mistake. In fact, only 22 percent of survery respondents think applicants make a mistake when they leave out their cover letters on a job application.
2. Respect the candidate’s time.
About 70 percent of companies don’t email candidates back. Responding to candidates with streamlined email processes–or following up with candidates you’re corresponding with–are both easy ways to avoid candidate frustration. Be conscious of how many interviews you’re scheduling, and how many of those interviews are convenient (phone, Skype, Google Hangouts) versus how many involve travel.
3. Act like a person, first.
Calling all VPs of engineering, directors of sales, HR managers, recruiters, and — you get the point. When you’re interacting with job candidates, remember to act like a person. It ensures that you treat the candidate like a person, not a number. And, it makes people feel a sincere connection to the hiring process and the company as a whole. You’ll also be much happier interviewing if you feel comfortable enough to act like yourself!
It’s easy to be mediocre at customer experience without even blinking. Your employment strategy doesn’t seem like your bottom, line but, in many ways, it is. Next time your company hires for a new position, try these inexpensive tactics. Candidates should impress you, but they should also be impressed by you.