What is candidate experience?
“Candidate experience” is candidates’ overall perception of your company’s recruiting process.
It is the way they experience your company's whole recruiting process, from sourcing and screening to interviewing and rejection, or hiring and finally onboarding.
This means that it encompasses their whole candidate journey - all 6 stages through which job seekers go through: Awareness, Consideration, Interest, Application, Selection and Hire.
How common is a bad candidate experience?
Why is everyone talking about candidate experience?
Candidate experience is not just a passing fad. There is a real need for it.
According to research, nearly 60% of candidates have had a poor candidate experience.
What causes a bad candidate experience?
Here are the 3 most common causes of a bad candidate experience:
1. Lack of response from employers
Research shows that the No.1 frustration during the overall job search is the lack of response from employers.
According to CareerBuilder survey, 75% of applicants never hear back from employers.
Imagine investing hours and hours into preparing your job application, only to never hear back from a company. How would you feel?
Yes, you are busy, we know. But providing a closure for each and every candidate doesn’t have to be a time-consuming and exhausting process!
How to fix it:
- Communicate at every step of the process
- Use these use these email templates for recruiters
- Use Applicant Tracking System to automate repetitive tasks
- Use CRM for recruiters to send personalized email campaigns to candidates
2. Complicated job application process
One of the biggest culprits of bad candidate experience are job application forms that are too long or too complicated.
According to CareerBuilder survey, 60% of job seekers quit in the middle of filling out online job applications because of their length or complexity.
If you want to provide great candidate experience and stop losing talent, you need to optimize your career site.
How to fix it:
- Allow various application options (let your candidates apply only by uploading their resume or via their social media profiles)
- Automate resume parsing to eliminate lengthy application forms
- Shorten your application forms - include only the questions that are absolutely necessary
- If you have many job openings, add a search bar to your career site
- Eliminate creating accounts in order to apply
3. Unpleasant interview
An unpleasant job interview can literally destroy candidate experience and cause candidates to opt out form your recruiting process altogether.
According to the LinkedIn survey, 83% of talent say a negative interview experience can change their mind about a role or company they once liked.
How to fix it:
- Use this interview invitation email template to inform candidates about all necessary details
- Conduct the right job interview type
- Ask the right job interview questions
- Define, plan and implement a successful strategy for performing job interviews
- Train your interviewers to deliver a professional and pleasant interview
Consequences of a bad candidate experience
According to CareerBuilder survey, the effects of one candidate’s negative experience can lead to a broader impact on the employer’s ability to recruit or sell products.
Further research showed that:
- 63% of job seekers will likely reject a job offer because of a bad candidate experience (Source: Software Advice).
- 72% of job seekers that had a bad experience told others about it, either online or in-person (Source: CareerArc).
- 64% of job seekers say that a poor candidate experience would make them less likely to purchase goods and services from that employer (Source: CareerArc).
Not only can a negative candidate experience have a disastrous impact on your recruiting process, but it can also very negatively impact your company’s bottom line - and cost you big bucks.
You are probably familiar with the famous case of Virign Media, whose experts calculated that a bad candidate experience costs the company $5M annually.
This is because an unhappy candidate can easily turn into an unhappy customer who will boycott your company’s services or products.
Additional tips for a winning candidate experience
In this blog post, we presented three most common causes of a bad candidate experience and suggested ways to fix them.
However, there are many more factors you need to consider if you want to deliver a winning candidate experience.
To deliver that perfect candidate experience, you should start from your candidate persona and carefully craft your candidate journey by paying attention to each and every touch point.
This might seem a bit complicated and overwhelming, but don’t worry, you can easily improve candidate experience in 10 simple steps.