QUIPS #1: Candidate Experience
Speaking and consulting with HR professionals, I often hear how hard it is to take best practices and actually implement them. The grand solutions shared at conferences and in whitepapers often come from companies with big staffs, big budgets and a supportive and forward-thinking HR team. What if that’s not you? What if you’re working exceptionally hard but starting from scratch? Maybe your company doesn’t have the money or the time and energy to focus on solving a problem in a big way. Today, Exaqueo introduces QUIPS: QUIck Problem Solving. These are quick ways to begin to address and solve common talent challenges. First up? Candidate experience.
You know you need to fix your candidate experience. But you don’t have time to do a complete audit. You don’t have money for new technologies and quite frankly, you don’t know where to start.
QUIPS: At its core, candidate experience is all about communication. Think about your worst customer service experiences. They are ones where you don’t know what’s going on and have to try again and again to get an answer or have your problem solved. But when you get an honest call or email that updates you on the problem, or the status of the problem, even if it takes some time to solve you appreciate the communication. Apply THIS to your candidate experience. Here are four quick things you can do to begin to address candidate experience now.
1) Communicate the process at the start: Tell candidates if they will hear back, how they will hear back and when to expect some sort of communication. Be honest about length of time. And give them a way to check in if possible. Share this information clearly, plainly and boldly in every job description or in an exceptionally prominent place on your site.
2) Be upfront with candidates: Let them know you’re busy/short-staffed/someone’s on vacation. Candidates won’t mind as much if it takes longer to hear if at least they know what’s going on. Require recruiters to have standard (and detailed) out-of-office replies and voicemail greetings.
3) Align recruiter responses: Ask each recruiter on your team how, if and when they respond to candidates. You’ll likely find some gaping differences–fix those and have some baseline requirements to help reinforce your reputation–that’s the foundation of your brand.
4) Make a small investment: Hire one person, even part-time if that’s all you can afford, to help manage the queue. Depending on the complexity of your organization, they can serve as the triage nurse–handling immediate questions about application status or interview scheduling changes and referring the candidate where the need is more complex like offer negotiations.
It’s a start. None of these will address the experience completely. But they will help with baseline challenge of communication. And when you have the time/money/focus/energy, you can use these resources to dive in further.
- Candidate Experience Awards: learn what you should aspire to when you’re ready to get to best-in-class
- The 2011 Candidate Experience Report: best practices and report on the state of candidate experience
- Creating a Better Candidate Experience: webinar on understanding the experience through the candidate’s eyes
- Understanding Candidate Experience: an overview of candidate experience and what to consider
- A Candidate Experience Monograph: an in-depth look at the history, state and potential of candidate experience