The Candidate Experience: It Can Make or Break Your Employer Brand

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A positive candidate experience can do wonders for an employer brand. On the other hand, a negative experience can really do some damage.

In a MysteryApplicant.com survey, 46 percent of candidates rate their experience poor or very poor, and 64 percent share their experience with a company via social media. People are sharing their candidate experience and it really does have a significant impact on the employer brand.

The site or job listing

The candidate experience usually starts with a click.

The company site or job listing is the candidate’s first glimpse of the company. The same way recruiters skim resumes, candidates skim listings.

According to a HireRight survey, 75 percent of respondents said that the look and feel of a job posting influences their decision to apply, and they will spend an average of 30 seconds looking at a post. When you consider that 52 percent of manager respondents claim that hiring and retaining talent is their number one business challenge, it is vital to get that first step right.

Correspondence

A mere 5 percent of candidates rate their experience as excellent, and this is due in large part to lack of, or slow, communication.

An astounding 77 percent of job applicants receive no communication from the organization after applying for an advertised position. That number represents a lost of missed opportunities for employers. Even a generic response is better than no response.

The application process can take up to an hour, and that doesn’t include resume writing or the listing search. To receive no communication or feedback on an application is inconsiderate on the part of the organization.

Timely correspondence should be a given, but sad to say, it’s not. Some 58 percent of applicants sited not getting regular feedback on the status of their application as a reason for sharing their negative candidate experience.

These people didn’t just hop online and fill out applications because they had nothing to do on a Friday night; they need a job. It is extremely aggravating to candidates when recruiters or hiring managers are untimely with their communications.

Courtesy

The employer brand is all about being the company for which people want to work for. A positive employer brand gets candidates to line up for the chance to be a part of an organization that they know will treat them right.

A surprising 90 percent of candidates who feel that they were treated with courtesy and a personal touch would encourage others to join the company in the future. Simply bringing manners and respect into the process can boost the employer brand in a huge way.

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Feedback

The numbers are there — the employer brand is significantly impacted by the candidate experience. Collecting feedback from candidates is a common sense way to improve upon the process, yet only 11 percent of organizations solicit feedback from their candidates.

This is another huge missed opportunity.

Candidates are investing time and resources into applying for each position. That effort should be matched in the candidate experience. The search for good talent has such an impact on the company in several different ways. Some 34 percent  of job candidates said that their experience during the hiring process, whether positive or negative, affected their decision to take the position.

With social media, globalization and business becoming increasingly transparent, word gets around quickly and broadly. Each aspect of the hiring process should consist of thoughtful interactions that project the brand and culture of the organization.