5 ways to create an exceptional candidate experience

Candidate experience is the new customer experience. Well, it’s not replacing customer experience exactly, but it is growing in the consciousness of recruiters and business owners everywhere – and for good reason: creating a positive candidate experience is a great way to maintain and spread your company’s reputation, and also gives you the best shot at landing the very best talent in the industry.
Here are 5 ways we suggest you go about creating a good candidate experience so you can get all the advantages it brings:

Make it memorable
One of the best things you can do for your candidates is to make their experience with you memorable in some way. If you can find some way to differentiate yourself, they will remember their meetings with you while their other interviews start to blend together in their minds. If you really do it right, they’ll remember their experience with you and talk about it with others even after its over, whether they got the position or not.

Now, there’s no need to be too gimmicky or inauthentic, but try out a few different ways of interacting with candidates that step outside the boundaries of a normal recruiting process. Some ideas that have been tried by others before are holding interviews over lunch, incorporating a game in the office play room into meetings or sending out fun, specially-designed invitations to interviews. Get creative and have fun.

Show who you are

If you’re struggling to come up with ideas to help you and the experience you offer stand out, this should help. If one of the best strategies for a good candidate experience is to make it memorable, one of the best ways to make it memorable is to think about what sets you apart from other companies and lean into your uniqueness.

What does your company do? What does it hope to achieve? What are it’s values? Answering these questions should help you think of some believable way of making a candidate’s experience with you different and exciting.

Handle things quickly
Especially with larger companies and important positions, candidates are often made to wait for communications and decisions. Not only is this a frustrating experience for candidates, who obviously have no interest in waiting around, but keeping the process quick and efficient will help boost your own image as professionals who care about their personnel, customers and candidates.

Keep it casual
Another way to put it would be to make candidates comfortable. Meeting new people is already a source of pressure for many – meeting new people who get to decide your future is a sure recipe for nerves, even if a candidate comes with strong confidence in their abilities and experience. Welcome them more as you would a friend; treat them with respect and don’t condescend.

One good way to go about this is to engage in small talk – well, good small talk. Awkwardly talking about the weather probably won’t cut it, but taking an active interest in something the candidate knows about or enjoys outside of the workplace can help put them in a place of comfort and confidence while making them feel appreciated. All this leads them to open up more and show you more of who they are.

Connect candidates to others in the company
Creating a point of contact with someone other than the CEO or chief recruitment officer can help candidates feel more at home and give them a better picture of what working for you will actually look like. On top of that, the candidate who does get hired will already have a social point of entry in the company, which is important for integration.

Whatever you do, don’t let candidates go unnoticed or unappreciated. All human beings appreciate true connection with others, and approaching candidates with a detached, disengaged attitude is a recipe for building a poor relationship, if you build one at all. What’s more, word spreads quickly in every industry – both the good and the bad. It takes time to build a clear reputation, but if you can establish yourself as an exciting employer who treats candidates well, the best will be drawn to you and choose you above others.


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 more changeable, more engaged and better equipped for creating a better future.