The Candidate's Perspective
We are about to embark on a five-part blog series covering a few different recruitment trends in the 2016 market. Hopefully have some relevance to both jobseekers and employers alike!
These won’t be your usual cliché recruitment trends like: “salaries are up”, “candidates are in demand” and so on. We will touch on candidate shortage in certain markets, but the focus will be knowing whether your recruitment project is one of finding someone or selecting someone... Stay tuned for this one.
This week we are focusing on educating employers on understanding the candidate’s viewpoint. My advice if nothing else during the recruitment process is to always think – how will the candidate feel about this?
So, let’s put ourselves in the candidate’s shoes…
Here are a couple of real life scenarios. While reading these try to think about how you would feel if you were the candidate.
You meet with your favourite recruiter and discuss a great new role that suits you and your career aspirations perfectly. You then attend an interview a few days later directly with the hiring manager at the employer’s premises. It goes really well, the role is what you want, the managers seem like good people. You are keen. However, 10 days pass and despite your favourite recruiter keeping in contact with you they have not been able to extract any sort of feedback or next steps from the client. Finally, you receive feedback through email which is an offer of employment.
Now this is good, don’t get me wrong, but the poor candidate has been sitting there thinking what is going on - do they like me? Am I a fit for them? Do my salary expectations stack up? And then the first feedback is an offer. This candidate took it well and it is a great fit, but they could have just as easily said, “No, sorry I don’t think these guys know how to communicate with people effectively, this is a warning bell for me”.
An employer has a really robust and consistent interview process, which includes 3-4 interviews where you meet the Directors, the Manager and have a coffee offsite with various team members away from management. The process went really well and the candidate (who was actually approached for the role) came around to the fact that this was a great opportunity and he was really keen. However, after verbally agreeing terms, it then took a week to get the contract together.
Again, the candidate was left waiting around wondering where the contract was, and whether it was normal for it to take this long. This delay portrayed a warning sign around the employer’s ability to move quickly on things, and the candidate wondered if they were getting cold feet… In the end, through communication, this situation was easily resolved. There ended up being valid reasons for the delay and the robust interview process earlier had given the candidate the comfort and knowledge of who they were dealing with. Lesson here: communicate with your candidates! Don’t assume that you can keep them waiting without good reason and that the person you approached isn’t looking at other offers. Getting the contract together quickly shows that you are committed to them and the offer, and that you are organised!
I hope these examples give some insight into how candidate’s feel during the recruitment process. Furthermore, these two scenarios only touch on those who were successful… I could write a whole other blog on how to reject candidates, how candidate’s feel when being rejected and the impact on your business. But another time. Moral of the story, treat your candidates really well. It’s not all about the employer – this is a two-way street! One could argue that it’s as much about the employee as it is about the employer finding the right person.
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Mike owns the business and delivers innovative recruitment campaigns to his clients. He enjoys working in a niche environment where each client's needs can be tailored to. Mike comes from an extensive recruitment and solution selling background, having previously worked for a large global consultancy and a number of New Zealand owned firms. Outside of work, he can be found playing with his two young kids or getting out for a surf or a sail when time allows!