Candidate Experience: Is a Jobseeker also a Customer?

Introduction

A company’s reputation is ultimately boosted when such a company remembers that job seekers are customers. Every customer experience simply begins with an interaction with the organization. Job applicants or seekers can become promoters or critics of a company and this is tied to their experience during the application and interview process. Like we all know first impression goes a long way and most times make an indelible mark in our minds. There is a multiplicative effect when a company treats its candidates with disregard. They don’t just lose that candidate as a potential customer. They also lose the various people whom the ill-treated candidate tells about their experience. This goes ahead to significantly reduce the revenues, every customer lost is money down the drain.

Ways to get great results when recruiting 

Recruiters and human resource departments need to look beyond the old-fashioned recruit-to-hire experience and become more intentional in giving each candidate a satisfying experience, bearing in mind that these are also customers. According to the Candidate Experience results, over 21% of candidates said they were or have been customers to places they applied for a job. Remember that negative feedback travels faster than positive, so even if a candidate isn’t qualified for a position, ensure that they always get the best customer experience.

1. Invest in Candidate Relationships

In order to recruit the best and also have a lot of positive feedback from those not qualified for the position, it’s important to invest in actual relationships and not just the end result which is to hire. Make them feel important, regardless of qualifications and you would have succeeded in keeping a customer beyond the candidate process.

2. Don’t Upset Applicants

It’s impossible to follow up with each resume due to the volume of applicants a year, but companies should however ensure to at least send a postcard or thank you note for sending in an application. No communication could be loss of referrals and sales.

3. Think like a Marketer

Recruiting has long gone beyond filling vacancies. It has become an avenue for employer branding by creating an approach that prioritizes candidate experience.

4. Think about your Company’s Hiring Process

How would you feel going through your company’s interview process in these areas?

  • Online applications
  • Length of time between application and contact.
  • Time between interview and follow up.
  • First impression of office.
  • Professional nature of the interviewers.

It is important for hiring authorities to take time to review these processes to ensure an efficient, professional, timely, and communicative hiring process.

After the Interview Session…

Candidates’ relationships with prospective employers don’t end once the interview process is complete, whether or not they fill in the position. Poor treatment of job applicants is equivalent to a failed customer service. Here are some steps companies can take to ensure that customers (job applicants) still hold the organization in high regard.

  1. Care for your prospective employees as much as you do for your customers and associates. Companies should never treat their applicants disrespectfully or without care whether or not they are a good fit.
  2. Value applicants concerns and questions. Organizations have the excuse that the sheer volume of applicants makes it difficult to give enough time to answer their inquiries. Question is, what if the organizations treated their customers the same way? Failure to respond to the concerns and questions can lead to negative reputation in the area of customer service.
  3. Evaluation and modification of hiring practices to ensure satisfaction of potential employees. Companies should constantly review their practices such as interview process, application process, feedbacks and follow ups to ensure candidates are given the best experience.

Bottom line

In 2014, according to virgin media, 6% of its candidates were customers who, as a result of their applicant experience decided to unsubscribe. This cost the business over 4 million pounds. This is just one example of an unfortunate business. It highlights the importance of ensuring a satisfying candidate experience. It also reinforces the fact that job seekers are also customers who wield a lot of power in the success of an organization.

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