January 5th, 2017 | Debbie Lamb, Sterling Talent Solutions

Promoting A Positive Experience for Rejected Candidates

Erasing sad face writing happy face

Candidate experience will continue to be a major topic for companies and organizations for many years to come. There are many components to ensure job candidates have a great experience starting with filling out an application to onboarding. Employer brand works hand-in-hand with candidate experience. According to LinkedIn, “One of the best ways to improve your organization’s employer brand as a recruiter is to provide a great experience for your candidates whether they are offered a job or not.” Every candidate interaction reflects your employer brand. Think about a terrible customer service experience you’ve had. You’re less likely to support an organization whose customer support department treated you poorly when you needed assistance, right? Employer relationships are no exception.

Benefits of a Positive Candidate Experience

When most employers think about the benefits of a positive candidate experience, they’re focused on retention, efficiency, productivity and even company culture, most of which is only going to impact their organization if the candidate is hired. But what about the applicants they turn away? Sure, a rejected candidate isn’t going to help you grow revenue or contribute to the office culture, but there are still plenty of reasons to consider the experience for the folks who don’t get the gig. Office Vibe found out that 64% of applicants would share negative application experiences with friends and family, while 27% would actively discourage others from applying for that job.

In today’s world, an impressionable experience (good or bad) can go viral in no time, so creating a positive experience for rejected candidates is more than just thoughtful, but also an investment in protecting your employer brand reputation. A LinkedIn survey found that 83% of professionals say a negative interview experience can change their mind about a role. They way that a company treats their candidates is going to have the most lasting impact on the way they view their company. 87% of job candidates say a positive interview can change their mind about a company. The interview process is a two-way street for both the employer and their brand and the candidate. If a candidate had a positive interview process, they might be more likely to keep in touch with the company via brand allegiance and product purchases.

Positive Feedback Matters

Candidates want to grow but need to know how. The same LinkedIn survey found that 94% of professionals want interview feedback if they are rejected. Just as feedback can help shape better performance within the walls of your organization, appropriate and constructive criticism can help job seekers improve themselves too. Whether it’s a botched interview, a huge hole in their resume or flaky follow-up, the candidates who don’t make the cut may not realize where they can and should improve without some careful insights. The keyword here is careful. Follow the leaders to provide a superior experience. LinkedIn found that candidates were four-times more likely to consider a job with a company in the future if they were given constructive feedback after being rejected from them the first time.

Positive Candidate Experience Means Great Onboarding Tactics

One aspect of the candidate experience is onboarding, especially during a new employee’s first few weeks at a new job. The right employee onboarding process will make a company stand out to potential candidates. There are many companies, such as REI, Google and Zappos, that are masters of onboarding. Solid new employee onboarding programs will have a positive impact on a business’s bottom line. It will also help an organization attract and retain the best talent and empowers an HR team to focus on finding, recruiting and securing the best talent for a company.

Learn more about how to transform your company’s onboarding process to improve the candidate experience in our eBook, Your Complete Guide to Onboarding From Decision to Day One.

This publication is for informational purposes only and nothing contained in it should be construed as legal advice. We expressly disclaim any warranty or responsibility for damages arising out this information. We encourage you to consult with legal counsel regarding your specific needs. We do not undertake any duty to update previously posted materials.