Blog Img

The Importance of the Candidate Experience in 2023

Back to Blogs

It's no secret that flexibility is topping the majority of candidate's wishlist post-pandemic, but did you know that almost half (47%) of jobseekers are currently accepting offers which fulfil this requirement, whilst keeping the door open to other opportunities?

New global research by Gartner highlights that the battle for talent is still well and truly on, with 42% of those who have recently accepted roles believing they could find a better job if they continued their search. In fact, 35% of those surveyed claimed they had received four or more job offers during their last search.

So, how can organisations prevent new recruits jumping ship before they've even set sail? 

The EVP (Employee Value Proposition) presented to the candidate during the hiring process is vital, with 56% of those surveyed confirming their employee experience is as important as compensation and benefits, and 90% suggesting they had exited a recruitment process because this didn’t align with what they were looking for.This covers compensation and benefits, but also factors in flexibility of working hours, career progression, learning and development, management style and diversity of the team.Ensuring the EVP of the organisation is clearly communicated during the recruitment process ensures the successful hire is fully aligned with the company values, with no surprises later down the line for either party.

Time also plays a key factor here, and the process needs to be sharper than ever to reduce the risk of candidate drop-out. If the process is slow and cumbersome, candidates can easily lose interest and accept offers from organisations who are making decisions more quickly. Equally, a lengthy process can create a negative impression of the business from the offset, demonstrating internal inefficiencies and a perceived lack of respect for the candidates time, particularly where they may be travelling or taking time off to work to meet their prospective employer. Ensuring the recruitment process is as time efficient as possible also benefits existing employees, who are put under additional strain when carrying extra responsibilities until a role is filled.

Transparency plays a huge part in cultivating a positive candidate experience, from sharing information about the salary of the role up front, something which 68% of candidates expect to see, to managing expectations about the job role and responsibilities the position entails. When organisations openly communicate about job responsibilities, expectations, company culture, and compensation, candidates feel respected and valued. Transparent practices demonstrate that the organisation has nothing to hide and is committed to an honest and respectful relationship with potential employees. Additionally, transparency about the stages of the recruitment process and the expected timelines helps candidates plan their schedules and commitments accordingly. This consideration for candidates' time further enhances their experience during the recruitment process. 

Once an offer has been accepted it’s important that the onboarding process is well-structured and designed to help make new employees feel welcome and assured in their decision to choose the organisation as their new employer. There are multiple areas during this process which could go wrong, and give the candidate a negative impression of the business. For example, unresponsive communication when they make contact to ask questions or address concerns before their first day, can leave a candidate frustrated or uncertain if they have made the right decision. Equally, if there is confusion over required paperwork such as contracts, this can create confusion and highlight disorganisation. 

Ahead of the start date, it’s vital that the candidate’s first day is mapped out and they are fully aware of basic company information, such as start times, location and dress code. While these may seem like minor details, not knowing this information can leave a new starter feeling anxious and unprepared for their first day. 

To prevent these issues, organisations should ensure clear communication, a well-structured pre-boarding process, and a designated point of contact for new hires' questions and concerns. A comprehensive checklist that covers all necessary steps before the new employee's arrival can help ensure a smooth onboarding experience from the very beginning, and avoid the disappointment of losing a new hire before they have even begun their new role.