10 Strategies for a Memorable Candidate Experience

5 minutes

10 Strategies for a Memorable Candidate Experience

The Beginning of the "Cande Awards"

It was 2013 when I started thinking about my people analytics startup, and the "CandE Awards" was the hot new topic. Gerry Crispin is the creator of the "CandE Awards" aka Candidate Experience Awards, which recognize companies that provide an outstanding candidate experience. The awards were first established in 2011 and have since become one of the most prestigious awards in the talent acquisition industry. The purpose of the awards is to recognize companies that are providing a positive candidate experience and to encourage other companies to improve their own candidate experience.

Fast-forward to 2023, when the COVID-19 pandemic has forced many companies to shift to remote work, which has led to an increase in remote hiring. As companies continue to navigate this new reality, it is important to remember that the candidate experience is still crucial in attracting and retaining top talent. In a remote world, the candidate experience is the heart of your talent acquisition strategy.

Benefits that a positive candidate experience brings

A positive candidate experience can have numerous benefits for your company. Improved employer branding, increased candidate engagement, increased candidate retention, and reduced time-to-fill are just a few examples. With so many companies shifting to remote work, the candidate experience has become even more important as a differentiating factor for job seekers.

A company that provides a positive candidate experience is more likely to attract high-quality talent who will be more engaged in their work, stay with the organization longer, and be more productive than those who don't feel valued by their employer.

All great endeavors come with challenges

However, remote hiring also presents new challenges for creating a positive candidate experience. The lack of personal interaction and the difficulty in building a connection with candidates and assessing fit are just a few examples. But with the right strategies in place, companies can still create a positive candidate experience for job seekers.

Gong.io, a series D startup with $538M in total funding according to Crunchbase, has accomplished an amazing candidate experience with one standout - they verbally share feedback with each interviewed candidate. This was a refreshing discovery as most organizations feel sharing feedback could put the company at risk, or create inefficiencies. However, it aligns with their recruiting strategy, and ultimately their philosophy. It's not surprising that they have an 86% recommendation rate and 98% approval rate of their CEO, Amit Bendov on Glassdoor. If I were to make a bet, I'd say the quality and quantity of talent stats that are rushing through their pipelines are running circles around their competition.

Gong.io Career Page

10 Strategies for implementing a memorable candidate experience

  1. Clear and timely communication: Keeping candidates informed about the status of their application, providing feedback, and answering any questions they may have can help build trust and create a positive experience.
  2. Moving away from digital interviewing tools: Digital tools such as video conferencing and pre-recorded videos can help companies create a more personal connection in a two-way interaction, leaving the candidate feeling like they've been "seen."
  3. Personalization: Tailoring the candidate experience to the individual by understanding their needs, preferences and career goals.
  4. Providing a positive and inclusive culture: Actively recruiting from underrepresented groups, implementing bias-free hiring practices, and creating a welcoming and inclusive environment for candidates.
  5. Follow-up and Feedback: After the interview, following up with candidates and providing feedback helps in building a positive relationship and improving the candidate experience.
  6. Leverage technology: Using technology to automate repetitive and time-consuming tasks like scheduling, candidate screening, and onboarding can help to improve the candidate experience.
  7. Employee referral programs: Employee referral programs can help to create a positive candidate experience by giving the candidate an inside perspective on the company culture, values, and work environment.
  8. Creating a sense of community: Building a sense of community among candidates, employees and the hiring team can help to create a positive candidate experience and foster a sense of belonging.
  9. Creating an inclusive culture: This includes actively recruiting from underrepresented groups, implementing bias-free hiring practices, and creating a welcoming and inclusive environment for candidates.
  10. Create a video: Whether it be in the office, or simply short clips of your Zoom or Teams meetings, share the remote working experience so they know what to expect.

What it takes to make your plan a success.

In conclusion, the candidate experience is still important in a remote world, and companies must prioritize it in their talent acquisition strategy. By implementing the right strategies, companies can overcome the challenges of remote hiring and create a positive experience for job seekers. A positive candidate experience can improve employer branding, increase candidate engagement, and retain top talent for the long-term. It's time for companies to focus on the heart of their talent acquisition strategy and prioritize the candidate experience in a remote world.

Who knows, maybe your organization is the next CandE winner?


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