“I understand that the market changed, but I put in a lot of effort crafting my resume and filling out pages and pages of information in their ATS. In this day and age, I can’t believe that the system can’t be set up in such a way that I receive a simple note stating I am not fit for the role. And I don’t even care that it’s a standard note. Just let me know whether I am in the running or not.”
Last week, we talked about the ways to get active with your passive candidates. Even in a market where there is no immediate shortage of candidates, continuing to communicate effectively with potential talent will strengthen your talent pool and as an important side effect, your employer brand. This week, we’ll dive a little bit deeper into how to improve the communication with candidates before, during and after the interview.
1. Key is Communication
If you want to build credibility with your candidates, create ambassadors early in the process and throughout their journey with you, and strengthen your employer brand, you have to communicate. Uncertainty is an unpleasant feeling. Not letting candidates know where they stand, especially in an already nerve-racking process such as applying got new roles, leaves a bitter aftertaste.
If you are working on redesigning or implementing a recruitment process, it helps to not just look at it from a company perspective. Yes, the process needs to be efficient, effective and compliant, easy to execute and manage and drive for quick and good results. But equally, it needs to be a good process for the candidates. Don’t forget: if all goes well, the candidates could very well end up as employees. So why not aim at making their first introduction with the company a pleasant one? And secondly, your candidate may end up as a client, customer or consumer. Increase the satisfaction in this process and you will have people that will be neutral to your brand at the very least.
Build your system or process in such a way that you send a receipt or acknowledgment of the application. With that simple message you can thank the candidate for the application and explain the next steps, and if you can, a time line. At the very least, you take away the candidate’s concern whether the company received the application. You can also send a follow-up for further documentation or other steps, such as tests, transcripts or other documents.
This is slightly more cumbersome if you don’t have an automated system, because it would mean that you send these messages yourself. If you are asking candidates to send in resumes through email, you can ask they use a very specific subject in the email and implement a ‘rule’ in your email program to automatically send a response and even archive in a special folder.
3. Show Status and Track Changes
If you have a system and your system allows for it, organize a system in which candidates can check when they log in to the system and view their status.
When you design the process, build in enough steps so candidates can better assess where their application is in the total workflow. By doing that, you provide the candidate with an accurate and precise status. This helps plan and manage expectations, especially if candidates are involved in other processes.
At the same time, if candidates have applied for multiple positions, they can easily maintain overview of the status of their applications. It saves the recruitment team a lot of time answering questions and the candidates understand where they stand.
4. Use Technology
When you’re communicating with candidates, successful and unsuccessful, you’ll make your life easier if you use platforms that do the heavy lifting for you. If you are conscious of your budget, there are cheap or free modules you can use. Of course, cheaper may mean that you won’t enjoy all the features of the software suite, but when you are balancing many candidates and keeping track of the status of sometimes hundreds of candidates, every bit of help makes your day more manageable.
Same applies to interviews. If you can use automated systems, you can streamline and optimize your processes. For instance, AskAway’s system can simplify the process around interviewing. Instead of the burden of planning interviews across many, many calendars, use AskAway’s platform and have the candidates answer predefined questions in their own time, and review in your and your team’s own time.
5. Close Out the Process
Like I said in the beginning, a message with a rejection is better than no message at all. It provides ‘closure’, and we know from the New York-based sitcom that closure is very important.
A quick message will do just that. You can soften the blow by thanking the candidate. Leave a good feeling by emphasizing the strength of the candidate and their resume, and advise people what to do next. You can explain whether you keep their information on file, and what the candidates can do to be considered for other positions. It is not necessarily bad if the message is clearly a standard one.
AskAway disrupts the way recruitment is done, by eliminating the need to plan and schedule time-consuming meetings in packed agendas and by offering tools to record or even prerecord interviews. This allows you and your hiring team the opportunity to share and analyze the candidates for your interviews when it suits you. We pre-screen so you don’t have to.
Contact us to find out more, or sign up for a no-strings attached free demo of our tool here.