Why personalizing the candidate experience will drive better results

Especially for companies with a large hiring need, a defined, measurable and quick recruitment process is key. Today we have access to technology that can greatly help in streamlining and facilitate processes, including recruitment processes that improve business outcomes.

What is often overlooked though is the ‘personal’ element of the recruitment process, i.e. responding to the candidates’ emotional triggers. When recruiters are at their best and utilized effectively, they often fill this gap, talking calls late in the evening, responding to concerns or coaching candidates though the often emotional resignation process. Well trained recruiters are painfully aware how important it is to keep a good relationship with the candidate and how important it is for candidates to gain an emotional tie with the company that potentially will be their new employer.

For most companies’ internal recruitment teams, it is more challenging to maintain a personal touch with candidates because of the internal bandwidth and budget issues. HR and line managers are usually extremely busy and the time just isn’t there to have a high touch approach with candidates. At the same time, the risk of candidate experience comes into play, as it can increase fall offs by 40% and poor onboarding experiences by 30%. There are two simple ways to make the recruitment process more personal, and thereby decrease fall outs and improve a positive transition to onboarding, thereby saving unnecessary time and money;

1.) Provide candidates with detailed company information early and often. Generally, the more a candidate learns about your company, the more interested he/she will become. Company marketing material is usually already available, but even better, is a document with the purpose of attracting key talent. Many times this information is available on the website, but provided that the candidate has interest from a number of other companies, it is not likely that he/she will take the time to digest this information.

Ideally this information will be sent after the first interview for candidates that will continue the process. The candidate then may read this information during the time between the first and second interview, that can take quite some time.

2.) Make the final interview more personal. When faced with taking a decision to join a company or not, emotional factors becomes more and more important to candidates. Questions such as “do I want to work for this company, or do I want to work this hiring manager?” are not as easy to define. A more informal meeting can therefore many times be better suited to respond to these questions.

Instead of delaying the final interview until there is a gap in the same meeting room two weeks down the road, why not invite the candidate for lunch, invite the candidate to

company training session, seminar etc. Last week we had a customer whose internal customer couldn’t meet a candidate (project manager) since he and his team had to spend their time on site. We agreed the candidate would visit him and the team on site, and as a bonus, the team could gauge the candidate within a “live” project and the candidate would be able to see the dynamics of the tem in a ‘live’ scenario. This shortened the process, saved the hiring manager time, and provided the both the hiring manager and the candidate the chance to further qualify each other in a different context.

When we consult clients on their internal recruitment process (STEPP™) relationships is one of four key pillars to produce better outcomes. When strong relationship management is combined with brand, access to talent, and an efficient process, the workforce acquisition program will keep you ahead of the curve.

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