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Consequences Of A Poor Candidate Experience

Published: Thursday 30th April 2020

When starting out your hiring process, it’s important to ensure all applicants have a positive experience from start to finish, even those who don’t end up getting the job, as a poor candidate experience will not only impact your ability to recruit the right person, but also have adverse effects on your business profits and your company’s reputation in the long run. But how can unhappy candidates have so much power over your company, in spite of not getting to work within the business?

Poor candidate experience costs money

As you already know, when hiring and recruiting, some will set a good fit for the company and the job description, while others simply won’t. Believe it or not, those candidates who are not right for the job, can still impact the development of your business. Moreover, the extent and nature of the impact will be dependent on the way this person sees your company based on the experiences they had during the recruiting process.

Male consultant in blue shirt and business suit is recommending to Improve Candidate Experience. Human resources management metaphor and business concept for offering a great recruitment experience.

If a candidate is unhappy with the way they were treated, they will be less likely to purchase products or services from your company. According to stats, 46% of candidates who feel they’ve had a poor candidate experience say they will take their purchases and customer trust elsewhere. Furthermore, bad word-of-mouth can also cost your business money. More than 25% of unhappy candidates with a poor experience would actively discourage others to apply as well as make negative remarks about your company, resulting in costing your brand potential talents and clients. In fact, research has shown that over 60% of job seekers will likely reject a job offer because of a poor candidate experience while 64% would be unlikely to purchase goods and services from that employer.

To put it in perspective, a great example is Virgin Media as the company calculates how much the poor candidate experience costs them. According to their calculations, if 123,000 candidates were rejected each year, and 6% cancelled their monthly Virgin Media subscription, they would end up with about 7,500 cancellations. Once you multiply that by the subscription fee (£50) within 12 months, Virgin Media would be set to lose out on a staggering amount of £4.4 million annually.

Poor candidate experience damages your employer brand

Employer Branding text in frame.

The impact on employer brand can be difficult to measure, but give candidates a bad experience, and word can spread. In fact, 72% of job seekers that had a bad experience told others about it, either online or in-person.

What should hiring managers do?

A structured interview process is key – A structured process is the most effective way to conduct interviews and will help improve candidate experience. Each interview has a specific purpose and questions don’t overlap—ensuring you gather the information you need to make a decision. Also, hiring managers are only having as many interviews as they need, and candidates don’t have to repeat themselves.

Do follow up – Making sure you follow up with candidates after the recruiting process ends is crucial in order to achieve a transparent and positive experience. Through the use of an ATS, you can set automated rejection templates, and it will take you only a few minutes to send these e-mails.

business people applicants waiting for their turn preparing for job interview sit in line queue. Poor candidate experience concept

Feedback is important – Honesty is highly valuable and candidate feedback is really important. The reason is simple; it allows job seekers to know where to work on their personal development plan, where to improve and what to expect from their application process during their job search. Also, sending follow-ups is not time-consuming. You can set up special templates to ensure each candidate receives an e-mail tailored for them and not a general message.

Communicate your company values – The candidate experience should align with your company values. In order to do so, you can create a process where you introduce candidates to more than just the hiring manager. Seeing a broader picture of the company is highly valuable. Proactively introducing candidates to a broader number of your employees, when appropriate, can not only showcase your company’s values in action, but create a personal experience that stands out within a candidate’s recruiting journey.

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