Three exercises to improve candidate experience

team doing a candidate experience brainstorming exercise

Talk to any talent acquisition professional and it won’t take long for the conversation to turn to candidate experience. We’ve been championing the cause for nearly two decades and if there’s one thing we’ve noticed recently it’s that candidate experience remains a challenge and it’s become a global one.

Today’s recruiting environment is a candidate-driven world. Even more so when you consider the instant global reach of today’s communication channels. What influences the way your candidates feel about your company? Your career site, your social media channels, your job postings – all of which are easily accessible across the globe. Certainly, it’s an issue for companies hiring in multiple locations around the world. It’s also a challenge for companies that are attracting candidates from around the world.

How do you develop a consistent and positive experience for such a diverse candidate audience? Just as there is no single influence on candidate experience, there is no silver bullet for making it positive. It touches every part of the candidate’s journey. And it should touch every person on your talent acquisition team. Regardless of role, candidate experience is everyone’s responsibility and it’s time that more recruiters put it at the top of their weekly to-do lists.

Three team exercises to improve candidate experience

Map your candidate’s journey: Take some key positions or job families and break down every touchpoint that a candidate can experience from their early research to managing offers. It’s an exercise that will almost certainly reprioritize projects and influence the time your team spends on activities that matter.

Put on your candidate hat: Develop a talent persona that is the ideal candidate for a common opening or perhaps a hard-to-fill opening. Challenge your team to determine key messages and materials that will help that candidate at each stage of the hiring cycle. Equally important are materials to help those who are not a fit learn for themselves that this isn’t the time to apply.

[Building your employment brand foundation]

Invite the data guys: At this year’s Analytics Colloquium it was clear that the companies that are starting to pay much closer attention to their TA data (clean data) are making a critical difference. Hopefully, you’re one of them! Invest in having Analytics tell the story behind the data to help define the factors and behaviors that are influencing candidate experience at your organization. Then take action.

Learn more about candidate experience

We’re digging into this topic a lot in the next few months. If you’re going to be at these events – and if you touch candidate experience, you should be – stop by to say hello. Starting with our Candidate Experience Colloquium in Toronto and continuing with our Global Candidate Experience Colloquium in Amsterdam – where you can stay for the UNLEASH World Conference to hear a panel discussion I’m leading on the same subject. I’m also moderating a Better Candidate Experience roundtable and giving a TED-style talk on Candidate Experience at ERE’s Recruiting Conference. And I’m thrilled to join TalentBoard at their annual Candidate Experience Awards Symposium and Gala. You can also find Chris and I at HRTechnology Conference and Expo next week and enjoy a panel of our members and friends who are reaching out proactively to candidates that are differently abled.

That’s a lot of talking about Candidate Experience! In our opinion, there is never enough discussion…as long as it’s evidence-based.