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Do you know what happens when a candidate applying to a job has a negative experience in the recruiting process?

An April 2017 article by Bill Hobbib at Bullhorn, “Why a Bad Candidate Experience is Bad for Business” published some eye-opening statistics:

 

It’s important to always treat your candidates like you would treat your customers!

These statistics tell us how many candidates will speak to their bad experiences – but what about candidates who have good experiences?

Having worked in the recruitment business for more than a decade, I’ve heard from a lot of candidates who still talk about their positive recruiting experiences. They feel it’s a direct reflection on the company’s brand and culture.

So, how can you help a candidate have a good experience with your hiring process? Your pre-hire assessment is a fantastic tool, and here’s why:

Use Employment Assessments to Give the Candidate Feedback

We encourage our clients to provide career management feedback as a value-added service upon a candidate’s completion of a pre-hire selection assessment, to help the candidate understand their career strengths and how to leverage these strengths to maximize successful career planning. This approach also helps to build self-confidence (i.e. conscious competence) and capitalizes on the philosophy that success builds character.

After all, it is a career fit assessment – and self-awareness is the key to personal and professional success. You can provide candidates with feedback about their natural strengths and career needs based on how they answered the questionnaire.

We also encourage our clients to add their logo to the candidate report along with “compliments of…”. It’s a nice way to say thank you to the candidate for taking time to complete this step in the recruiting process!

From my experiences, I can tell you that many people who took the assessment years ago still have their feedback, and they draw upon it from time to time. The feedback with your company logo creates a memorable experience and a connection that promotes brand loyalty, even if the candidate didn’t get the job.

Candidate Feedback as a Referral Tool

Let me give you an example of one candidate I spoke to:

Right after he received the feedback results, he shared it with some of his friends. He told them to “go apply at this company and they’ll give you some free career advice through this report, which highlights your strengths and career needs”. Well, his friends also told their friends, and so on, and the hiring manager got a whole bunch of warm leads!

Furthermore, he told me that although he wasn’t chosen for the role, he is now a strong a Centre of Influence for the hiring manager who approached him. In fact, he referred three other people to the job – two of which were hired and still work there.

It’s really amazing what a positive candidate experience can turn into!

Candidate Feedback as a Converting Tool

While the main purpose of an employment selection assessment is to predict on-the-job performance, companies can also use the assessment to turn on high potential recruits!

One of our clients actually likes to personally give feedback to candidates they believe have strong potential for success. Here’s what they say to these top candidates:

“You are probably wondering why I wanted to meet with you after you took our pre-hire assessment. Well, I wanted to give you some personal feedback on your results. Not everyone can be successful in this business, but this assessment tells us that you have something special to offer! Here is your report to take home, and we would like to continue the conversation so that we can help you achieve success in this business.”

Think about the impact and professionalism this shows candidates! If you were in this candidate’s shoes, you would not only be thrilled but also humbled that you stood out that way.

 Furthermore, you would likely tell others of your experience.

Companies that provide candidates with feedback in the recruiting process (instead of relying on systems that send out impersonal rejection letters) are doing it right. Recruiting is a people business; treating people well is extremely important because, while not everyone will get the job, some might just become customers one day!

So, if you use pre-hire assessments ask yourself this question: “does my assessment give candidate feedback?” If not, consider the impact implementing candidate feedback will have on your ability to gain referrals and convert high potential candidates!


With over 35 years of research, SMG can provide the pre-employment assessments and data-driven insights your organization needs to predict retention and performance when hiring. Contact us now!

Stay tuned for the launch of our new Talent Analytics Workshops.

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Robert Dougan

About Robert Dougan

Robert is the Director of Practice Management and a senior consultant at The Self Management Group. Robert has spent many years helping professionals in financial services with personalized custom solutions in the area of talent acquisition, talent management, succession planning, coaching, and team development to improve both the top and bottom line.

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