We all know that candidates bring their A-game to the recruiting process, so why should it be any different for companies that are hiring? Long before the interview, candidates begin to form their opinion about what it will be like to work with you. Does your company’s candidate experience have them accepting your job offer in seconds or continuing their search?
According to Talent Board’s 2022 Candidate Experience (CandE) Benchmark Research Reports, bad candidate experiences are on the rise globally.
“Employers need to keep in mind that resentment has major repercussions to their brands and the bottom lines, such as whether or not candidates will apply to their jobs again, whether they'll refer colleagues and friends, whether they'll be brand advocates, and whether they'll buy a company's products and services,” said Kevin W. Grossman, Talent Board president.
"Employers need to keep in mind that resentment has major repercussions to their brands and the bottom lines, such as whether or not candidates will apply to their jobs again, whether they'll refer colleagues and friends, whether they'll be brand advocates, and whether they'll buy a company's products and services. Even in North America, where resentment levels fell slightly in 2022, they're still high."
- Kevin W. Grossman, Talent Board president via PR Newswire
Luckily, the organization also looks at what top companies do to give candidates a positive experience. Let’s look at some candidate experience statistics that show why it matters and which strategies will help you win at hiring.
Why is Candidate Experience Important?
The candidate experience gives them a glimpse into how you treat your employees. A poor candidate experience tells job seekers that your company isn’t a good place to work. Even if they accept your offer, they’re more likely to quit after a short time or accept another offer.
On the other hand, a great experience tells candidates you value your people and starts them off on a positive note. 75% of employees who agree they had an excellent experience said it was a significant factor in choosing their employer.
Talent Board’s research shows that winners of their Candidate Experience Awards use similar strategies to attract and hire the candidates they want. CandE Award Winners are:
- 26% more likely to align recruiter performance with candidate experience
- 68% more likely to use artificial intelligence in recruiting
- 50% more likely to give detailed feedback to internal candidates who are not hired (and more likely to have internal candidates in the first place)
CandE Award-winning companies boast a 40% lower candidate resentment rate than all other companies. As a result, their candidates are more likely to share their positive experiences with friends and family and via online reviews. When you treat candidates with respect, they’re not shy about spreading the word.
Keep reading for the data on ways to improve your candidate experience and foster a positive relationship with every applicant.Check out these jaw-dropping stats to see how the #CandidateExperience is impacting your #hiring process:
Candidates’ First Impression: The Employer Brand
Your employer brand is vital — it communicates what your company is all about and is a big factor in attracting job applicants. 60% of candidates spend an hour researching your company before they apply, so you need a well-developed employer brand to answer their questions and entice them to apply.
Talent Board’s research found that candidates want three things before applying:
- To understand the company culture
- Insight into the employee experience
- A sense of connection to the brand
Let’s dig into what you can do to develop a strong employer brand and communicate your employee value proposition (EVP).
This is often the first piece of content a candidate sees about your company, especially if they found the job posting via social media or on a job board. Writing an accurate, inclusive job description ensures you don’t alienate candidates or surprise them with unexpected job duties — one of the top reasons candidates withdraw from the recruitment process.
Gen Z job applicants, in particular, are looking for transparency in job descriptions:
- 87% said pay transparency and equity are important or very important
- 53% would be discouraged from applying if the job description didn’t include a salary range.
While transparency is essential, don’t overwhelm job seekers with details. Too many requirements, gendered language, and overusing jargon can all result in a less diverse candidate pool and fewer applicants overall.
- 63% of women vs. 52% of men were concerned about meeting every requirement listed.
- Listing the skills candidates need instead of requirements increases applications by 11% and candidate diversity.
Today's best applicant tracking systems (ATS) can help your HR team hire faster and stay consistent and accurate with AI-powered job descriptions. Using your existing job titles, including the core competencies and role requirements, your team can generate descriptions in seconds with just a few clicks. From there, recruiters can add supporting details and post open roles faster than ever.
Like job descriptions, your careers site is among the first places applicants interact with your brand. Your careers page is where you can showcase your employer brand and the employee experience. It helps applicants determine if your mission and values resonate with them and whether they’ll be happy working with you.
48% of candidates said that content around company values was the most crucial piece of marketing content for them. Here’s what else they want from your career site:
- Available in multiple languages
- Info about company culture
- Details about the products or services offered by your company
- Information about diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) at your organization
- Your EVP, or why your company is a great employer
The Application Process
How your team handles job applications is integral to your employer brand. You’re losing out on top talent if the application takes too long, can’t be completed on a mobile device, or isn’t available in their preferred language. And applicants want to hear from you whether or not they’re moving on to the next step in the hiring process.
- Talent Board’s highest-rated companies notify rejected candidates via automated emails or text messages within three to five days.
- 34% of candidates said they hadn’t heard from companies two months after applying.
- Four- and five-star application ratings increased 86% when candidates began their application via text or had access to a chatbot during the application process.
Moving On Up: The Interview Process
You worked hard to find qualified candidates to interview — don’t lose them now! Interviews are high-stress moments for candidates who want to make the best first impression. Continue their excellent candidate experience with a fair, fast, and stress-free interview experience.
- An inconsistent interview process can lead to a negative candidate experience, but just 59% of organizations have a structured process.
- 62% of employees say they lose interest in a job if they don’t hear back within two weeks of their first interview.
“Acquiring the right talent is the most important key to growth. Hiring was, and still is, the most important thing we do.”
- Marc Benioff, Founder, Chairman and co-CEO of Salesforce
Continuing Candidate Experience: The Follow-Up
Interviews allow you to identify the top talent you want to hire but don’t ignore the rest. Candidates who weren’t hired could be the perfect fit for another role. You can also take a cue from Talent Board’s highest-rated companies and provide candidate feedback to those who aren’t selected. Giving feedback strengthens your employer brand and leaves candidates with a positive perception of your company.
- 48% of candidates who aren’t chosen want to be considered for other roles.
- 63% of candidates say they didn’t receive any feedback after being rejected during the screening and interviewing stage.
- When candidates did get feedback, they were 50% more willing to refer others and 40% more inclined to increase their relationship with the employer.
Keep your candidates in the loop creates a friendly and inviting candidate experience that helps build a strong talent pipeline.
Overhauling Candidate Experience: Start with Software
Does your candidate experience need a few tweaks or a major transformation? Identify pain points in your process by asking:
- Do we have a defined employer brand?
- Is the job description clear and accurate?
- Does our careers site reflect the employee experience accurately?
- How long does the application process take?
- How long does the interview process take?
- Do we follow up with every candidate?
93% of candidates say they’ve felt anxiety about their job interviews. Alleviate stress and impress top talent with a simple and seamless candidate experience powered by modern HR technology.
ClearCompany Applicant Tracking System gives your HR team the tools to create a positive candidate experience for every applicant. Sign up for a personalized ATS demo today.