In 2020, having a simple, slick recruitment process is a must.
Long gone are the days of making applicants jump through hoops to work for you; recruitment is a two-way street and you should aim to make it as simple as possible for a candidate to apply for a job with your organisation.
On average, there are 80 separate candidate touchpoints during the hiring process. These are 80 opportunities to delight your candidates and equally as many to disappoint your candidates.
A negative experience of your hiring process can lead to a candidate rejecting your offer or worse, telling their friends, family and/or social media followers about their poor experience. Nothing tarnishes a company reputation more than bad reviews.
But how can you make your recruitment process more candidate friendly? Read our top tips below:
1. Bring your application form online
We’re well and truly embedded in the digital age and if your application process isn’t optimised for mobile devices, you’re missing out on a huge number of potential applicants. In fact, more than 50% of jobseekers look for roles on their mobile device, according to Glassdoor.
Bringing your application questions online and having a quick apply process is a great way of encouraging applications from candidates who might be browsing for jobs while they’re on the move. However, there is still a large number of organisations that have a clunky offline application process.
For example, we speak with organisations frequently who require a PDF application form to be downloaded, filled out and re-uploaded by candidates. This isn’t achievable on a smartphone and would certainly require a desktop or laptop and a printer.
Using online recruitment software, such as an Applicant Tracking System (ATS), allows you to build your own online application forms for your vacancies and set up screening questions for candidates to answer. Additionally, your ATS will allow you to view the percentage of candidates that have actually applied via a mobile device so you can make data-driven decisions about mobile initiatives moving forward.
2. Think carefully about the application questions you’re asking
Too many questions in your application form can lead to candidates giving up before they’ve completed the application process. When putting together your application form, think to yourself if you’re asking questions that are really necessary (i.e. are they going to help you screen candidates quicker?) or if you’re asking candidates for information that you could easily find in their CVs.
Also consider the type of questions that you’re asking candidates; try and stick to simple radio buttons or checkboxes rather than free text boxes which require candidates to type a longer answer. The latter is much more difficult to complete on a mobile device.
Even making the smallest tweaks to your online application form can have a positive effect. In fact, making an online application form just 10% easier to complete can cause a 2.3% increase in applications from mobile users and 1.5% increase from desktop users, according to Glassdoor.
3. Send timely application confirmations and follow-up communications
There’s little worse for the candidate experience than never hearing back after taking the time to submit an application for a vacancy. This can lead to candidates feeling ignored and is likely to create a negative impression of your business and your brand.
An ATS will generate automated application confirmation emails so candidates are aware that their application has been received, as well as emails notifying them if their application is being progressed or has been unsuccessful.
However, while having automated acknowledgements in place is a good thing, ensuring hiring managers are reviewing applications quickly is even better, as this allows you to provide a prompt response to candidates and arrange interviews as soon as possible. Just remember, even if a hiring manager sits on an application for a week, that’s an extra week that the candidate could be snapped up by a competitor.
4. Provide clear and direct interview instructions
If a candidate has been selected for an interview with your company, make sure you provide them with all the information to help them succeed. For example, if your office is difficult to find, provide directions and a contact number that candidates can call if they get lost.
Additionally, ensure that candidates are made aware of any tasks they may be required to complete during or prior to the interview and are briefed on who they are meeting so they can prepare for the interview appropriately.
To keep candidates engaged in the run up to their interview, you can send them text messages via your ATS to remind them of their appointment. This will also help to reduce the probability of candidates not showing up for their interview.
5. Deliver a smooth and slick onboarding process
A candidate has accepted your offer – great! However, how can you provide a great user experience after the offer has been made?
A slick employee onboarding process is a great way of giving candidates the chance to complete their own onboarding documentation – whether it’s signing contracts online, submitting their referees or receiving valuable information about their future job, it’s a great way of engaging them and also provides a good impression of your business prior to their first day. Think of it as a ‘self-serve’ portal for candidates.
Not only does this create a modern first impression of your business, it streamlines the process for both candidates and your HR team, rather than having to spend time sending out documents manually.