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The Muse

Candidate experience has always been important, but today, it can truly make or break your business.

Why? For one, top talent has a lot of options. So they pay attention to everything about prospective employers, from how easy it is (or not) to apply, to how they’re treated throughout the hiring process, to how they feel when they’re interviewing in the office, to even how they or other applicants are rejected.

So, how do you ensure that your candidate experience is top-notch? This was the topic of a recent webinar presented by The Muse and Lever as Part 3 of The Muse’s webinar series: The New Rules of Work. We hosted Kevin Grossman, Talent Board President of Global CandE Programs, and Angie Verros, founder of vaia Talent, for an engaging chat about what the best companies do differently at every stage of the process.

Watch the full webinar here, or read on for more insights:

1. Everyone’s a Candidate—So Invest Beyond Your Careers Page

Whether we’re actively looking for a job or not, we’re all candidates, noted Grossman. After all, even if we like our jobs, our heads can turn at any time.

So, when you think about the candidate experience, don’t just think about your careers page and your application process—think about all of the other ways people might hear about you as an employer, like social media, reviews on Glassdoor, and things they hear from their friends and contacts.

And more importantly, use those vehicles to your advantage. Spend time on social media, sharing stories about what it’s like to work at your company. (Be sure to leverage your existing employees here, too.) Take a cue from T-Mobile and host Facebook Lives about what it’s like to work for your company.

Pay attention to your reviews on Glassdoor (and ask some of your happiest employees to leave one). And work with The Muse to create assets that you can use to showcase your employer brand across the web.

2. Consistent Communication Is Key

In today’s world, we’re used to communication from the companies we buy from. Just think about when you order a pizza online. You can see every step of the process; the order processing, your pie being made, the food heading out for delivery. But when you submit a job application? It’s typically a black box of mystery.

While you don’t have to go so far as build a Domino’s style application tracker, you can ensure you’re communicating with candidates every step of the way. When you’re scheduling interviews, why not include an itinerary or agenda with information about who the candidate will be meeting with? Once you’re ready to make an offer, let the candidate know the second you can when it’s on the way. If the process is taking longer than you’d like (hey, it happens) keep people in the loop on what’s going on and why.

And for those candidates you’re rejecting, let them know that you won’t be moving forward. According to Talent Board, only 20% of candidates receive an email notifying them they were not being considered. So if you do? You’ll stand out, and you’re likely to be remembered fondly and have candidates want to interact with your company in the future. On that note…


3. Candidates Should Be Treated Like Customers (Because in Some Cases, They Are)

The latest Talent Board study revealed some shocking statistics about how candidates interact with companies after they’ve had a great experience—or a negative one. When they have a great experience, 64% of candidates will increase the business relationship they have with the company—whether that’s referring other applicants or buying products or services. If it’s a terrible experience? 43% of candidates will sever ties completely.

The lesson? There’s a real business case to be made for investing in the candidate experience and making it great, both for the people you do hire and those you don’t.


Want to learn even more about how to create a standout candidate experience? Watch the full webinar.