Want to know a fun fact about communication in recruitment? 81% of candidates actually want frequent and open communication throughout the hiring process. Shocking, right? No way! Based on this stat, candidates want transparency of process, just as much as the next person. That’s what makes this a journey, not a teleportation from A to B. So why do so many organizations deprioritize this crucial part of the process? Well, communication in recruitment is actually a full-time job. But here’s the thing, letting candidates in on the process creates a sense of visibility and collaboration before they even start with the organization. It’s important to note that stage movement, pre/post-interview follow up, as well as quick updates are all small touches that go a long way, and will not only keep prospects engaged, but give them an interviewing experience that they will never forget.
We’ll cut to the chase here: mapping out and investing in the recruitment communication strategy is just as important as the mapping of the overall hiring journey. Each step is unique and it requires its own special touch. If you are using an Applicant Tracking System (ATS), try and learn the tool inside and out, but if time does not allow, figure out which basic automation could support the repetitive tasks in the process. For example, it’s always nice to acknowledge an inbound application, so instead of having your recruiters reply to every application, set up a stage action in your ATS, so every time an app comes in, an email goes back out to the candidate, confirming receipt. Setting up interview reminders is a great way to leverage automation as well. Interview confirmations are also important, they are a great way to send that one reference email that has the organization information and the job description included.
Below are a few examples of communication milestones that are not to be missed:
Interview request with recruiter
Reject / Advance candidate WITH feedback
Round 1 interview request
Pre-interview check in
Post-interview check in
Just like any enablement tool, there is a broad range, and they come with different capabilities and price points. Keep in mind that the price does not always dictate quality. Make sure to play around with a few and pick the one that aligns with your team and process.
Now let’s think about something crazy; if we compare recruitment to sales, the two are not that different! The hiring journey from a candidate’s perspective is very similar to shopping for a new product. You wouldn’t engage with a potential buyer and then drag them along for weeks with an unclear path of what you are selling and when, right? RIGHT! In a typical setting, you would have your sales cycle planned out, team primed to WOW the prospective buyer, all while moving as quickly as possible to beat out the competition.
So let’s get one thing straight: just like the buyer’s journey, the candidate journey begins way before they land an interview with your organization. Just like moving leads from the top to the bottom of the funnel, you need to educate candidates on who you are, why they should join your company, while keeping them informed throughout their interview process. Treat these candidates as you would each and every lead, like gold! With a solid foundation and great communication, you will be able to keep those star candidates from start to finish.