Improving candidate experience Before, During and After the Hiring process
Last month Maria Beneite, Head of People at Circular, hosted a round table at HiredBCN on the topic: “What is missing from your candidate experience?”
Since Circular is all about collaborative recruitment, we couldn't resist bringing collaboration into the equation and making the format of this session collaborative.
We encouraged attending recruiters to contribute to the discussion, bringing to the table the things that they thought were missing from Candidate Experience both in their processes and the industry in general.
Participation surprised us, clearly, Candidate Experience is an important topic for recruiters, and not only for us at Circular.
The exercise involved giving recruiters drawing materials so they could draw what they thought about initiatives that will ensure an amazing candidate experience Before, During and After their hiring process.
The contributions were incredibly varied, and we couldn't have enjoyed more the collaborative learning environment we saw, the discussions we heard and the novel ideas presented.
So, what conclusion did the round table reach about what will ensure a great Candidate Experience?
Recruiters who mentioned initiatives before the process highlighted the importance of transparency and honesty about the process the candidate is applying.
The aim of applying these solutions before the process focused on giving the candidate the tools to prepare his best interview self, and to generate interest before the application and retention after.
The Manfred People team described how they create hyper-detailed Job descriptions, focusing on the most relevant information: Responsibilities, Process steps, Company culture etc… The aim is to sell the project and generate interest in it.
Although it could be argued that everyone focuses on Candidate Experience during the process, it was really refreshing to see how this part of the process was the one that generated the most innovative propositions.
We all especially loved hearing an idea revolving around letting the candidate customise their hiring process. ie: Don’t force the candidate through a defined and rigid structure, let them pick and choose how they want to submit their application.
It was beautiful to see so many different ideas revolving around collaboration, like removing Home Tasks and instead doing joint coding sessions.
Furthermore, the wealth of ideas on how to improve and adapt your empathic and communication skills is worth a whole article on its own, but one key takeaway was feedback. Giving timely feedback along the process to ensure transparency, ensuring a good experience throughout and managing expectations.
We really enjoyed hearing how a recruiter proactively sets up a 30-minute call with the team and the candidate to have an informal "coffee" chat where the candidate is encouraged to interview the team he would potentially be working with.
How to Improve Candidate Experience after the process focused mostly on the importance of feedback and the rejection stage.
It was interesting to see the importance that the rejection stage had for most recruiters. Rejection isn't the end of the journey either for the candidate or the recruiter.
Most of the initiatives discussed revolved around offering advice, help, recommendations and how to better give feedback. Interestingly enough there was a majority consensus that, although they might not be the perfect fit for your position, the candidate might be perfect for another position.
What happens after the process or at the rejection stage is a topic close to our heart at Circular.
Overall the roundtable was a marvellous chance to share experiences, knowledge and findings, and we couldn’t have been happier to have such participation. We will never tire of stating how much we believe in collaboration over competition in recruitment, and when we see other People teams that share our values, well, great things happen!