Summer’s over and it already seems like your company needs some new talent. All your departments are being flooded with requests, and soon you’ll be in over your heads. You need to get hiring – and fast! But where have all those promising candidates gone – the ones who where desperately trying to win your affection three months ago? Stop writing those job adverts – Agorize has carried out a survey and can help you to understand what’s going on.
The recruitment process at big companies is often too long and too complex. The candidate experience is overlooked, gradually worsening the employer brand. We interviewed 248 people (candidates, recruiters, students and employers) to find out their feelings and identify ways to improve business recruitment. Here’s what we’ve learned.
The impact of the recruitment process on the employer brand
“When a company holds more than three interviews for a position, what does it make you think of?” That’s the question we asked the 248 people we surveyed (they could choose several answers). Here’s what they think.
It wasn’t an open question, granted, as the people we interviewed could choose between the pre-determined answers, but nonetheless the survey shows a clear trend. Although some people see procedures like this as a positive challenge that will showcase their value, the majority disapprove. And if there’s one thing you should take away from this chart, it’s the negative impact that never-ending recruitment processes have on your employer brand.
Candidates throw in the towel
And this is only the beginning. Of the 248 people we interviewed, only 11.6% said that they would end the recruitment process right at the start when they learned about the marathon ahead of them. Phew! But not so fast – 50.2% will withdraw their application if they’re offered a job at another company in the meantime. It’s food for thought (just don’t chew it over for too long).
But looking beyond the figures, there’s also a question of cost for the company – if you have 4 or 5 hour-long interviews per candidate, the recruitment process quickly becomes time-consuming and costly. So the answer is simple – you need to optimize.
Bearing in mind the need to strike a balance between the time you save, the boost to your image and the chance to take on new talent, take a look at our 248 respondents’ two simple ways to improve your recruitment process.
Method 1: reduce the number of interviews
Here’s what our 248 respondents said to the question: “What do you think is the optimum number of interviews for a position (permanent/internship/temporary contract)?”
Almost 70% of the people we spoke to said that two interviews were enough. Don’t fall off your ergonomic chair! You need to be able to bring together the relevant employees, identify the best candidates and make a decision in just two interviews. Otherwise, they might accept an offer from a competitor – yes, there’s definitely a pattern emerging here. Depending on the position the candidate is applying for and its level in your hierarchy, the format and duration of the process can vary, of course.
Which leads us to our second method. What do you think is the best timeframe to inform candidates of the verdict?
Method 2: Get back to candidates within 2 weeks
Less than a week. Well, that would be ideal. Candidates are aware of the time and the step back that decisions like this need. So, while it’s recommended that you let them know in the week following the interview, in reality, it’s acceptable to wait up to 2-3 weeks to fully consider the decision. After all, even if you find your dream candidate, it’s rare to have just one person making the decision.
Throughout these decisive weeks, you need to maintain communication and keep candidates up-to-date about the progress of their application so they don’t head off to greener pastures. For example, you could schedule emails and SMS messages at different stages of the recruitment process. It’s the best way of creating a climate of trust, which benefits your employer brand. Don’t hesitate to use mobile technology in your communications (like a dedicated recruitment app, for example). It’s been proven that smartphones are the most popular job-searching tool used by top talent.
So to improve your recruitment process, there are two things you need to do:
- reduce the number of interviews
- shorten your response times
Essentially, you need to take care with the candidate experience – it’s vital for your employer brand. This way, you’ll not only save money, but it’s also an excellent tool for helping you to stand out from your competitors. And it’s particularly true for major groups, who are increasingly seeing talented young people head off to work at SMEs and startups. The talent war is a reality – so it’s up to you to stack the odds in your favour.