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Four Ways to Instantly Improve the Candidate Experience at Your Company

Hiring managers frequently ask us how they can improve the candidate experience and hiring practices at their company. One of our main suggestions? Sell your company and the role as much as the candidates are selling themselves. If you want to compete for the best talent, here are four things to include in your hiring process and improve the candidate experience.

1. Shine a positive light on your company.

Believe it or not, you might not be the most attractive person at the dance. Everyone thinks their company is great. If they didn’t, why would they work there? But your candidate doesn’t know you from Adam or Eve. Don’t let hubris get in the way of rolling out the red carpet. The mindset of, “they should want to work here” doesn’t work anymore. Remember, you are in a dogfight for quality talent. Sure, you’re the most successful hedge fund with amazing offices and beautiful views, but the software firm across the street has better snacks and a more relaxed dress code. By not putting the job and the company in the best light, applicants will swipe left. Just as every candidate should want to get a job offer, (whether they take it or not), every company should wow candidates so they’ll want to work there. Then, it’s up to you to decide if they should.

2. Respond to what they want.

Sure, money is important. But one of the biggest reasons job seekers say “yes” to an offer is company culture. Ensure yours is fully represented to candidates throughout the recruitment process. How? Tell them why you love your job and make sure everyone in the interview process does the same. Employees stay with companies for different reasons – make sure everyone in the interview process can clearly articulate theirs. Soon enough, you’ll figure out what pushes the prospective candidate’s culture button. It could be flexible hours, opportunities to volunteer, ways to contribute outside of their role, who knows. Dig for their cultural must-haves and if your company has it – sell it!

3. Show them all sides.

I could go for an hour why my company is the best place to work, but those are my reasons. We all know that not every candidate is right for every company, but the opposite is also true. We are caring, supportive, competitive and fun, but we take what we do very seriously. If you are looking for a company that rings a bell and rolls out the keg, we aren’t the right place for you. But if you want an organization where you will be challenged to be the best that you can be, and that will offer you a real career opportunity that will reward you for many, many years, then this is the place to be. Be open and show them who you really are as a company. If they don’t love it then it was never meant to be. Better to figure it out early-on so you don’t invest extra time when it’s not a fit.

4. Keep it real.

We all know the importance of selling the company and the role, but not at the expense of hyperbole. Don’t oversell it! Show them who you are – warts and all. And in the end, be honest about how you feel. If after all of this mutual sharing this is someone you like and can see being on the team, tell them. Everyone wants to be wanted and there is nothing better than hearing it. And if you’re not feeling it, tell them that, too. Sure, candidates don’t love to hear they aren’t the one, but they will certainly appreciate you being honest and upfront with them. No one wants to hold out hope or push other things off for something that isn’t going to happen. By doing so, even candidates you don’t select will sign your praises, and in this world of fast traveling news, that positive press will help you land the ones you really want.

By starting every interview with the mentality that this candidate deserves a positive, real and respectful experience, you will not only entice the candidates you want, but you will also send the message that you are a company who truly cares about people.

Photo credit: Austin Distel for Unsplash

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