As recruiters and hiring managers, when we post an open position, we expect a certain decorum from the candidates we choose to engage with. What we often forget is that the candidates need that same level of respect and decorum even more than we do. Keep in mind that when candidates are looking for a new job, it’s nerve-wracking. They may already be stressed by financial pressures, a toxic work environment at their current job, or other personal deadlines that are putting pressure on them. While it may not be our job to act as their therapist and hold their hand, it is our responsibility to recognize the humanity and vulnerability that comes with sending in an application.
After all, people may not remember what you say or do but they will remember how you made them feel. How we treat applicants during the recruitment process says just as much about our brand as an employer and our company as their application says about them. In our experience these are the most common hiring etiquette faux paus that companies commit during the recruitment process.
Keep Candidates in the Know
Although you want to fill the open position on your team as fast as possible, if you are like most employers you will likely keep the application open until your new hire signs on the dotted line. Regardless of where you are in the recruitment process be sure to keep candidates updated on where their application stands in the funnel. You can achieve this with an automated applicant tracking system where they are able to check their status online or by setting hard dates of when they can expect to hear back from you after each interaction. Point is, don’t leave them waiting because they are applying to other jobs and will go with those jobs if they don’t hear back from you.
Stop Ghosting Candidates
We don’t like telling applicants they didn’t get the job any more than you do, but we do it out of simple respect for the candidate. You’d be surprised how fast a company can get a reputation for ghosting, causing good candidates to not apply and making your recruitment efforts that much harder. If you don’t have the time to tell them one-by-one, make it easy on yourself and create a rejection email template in your automated email marketing software. For candidates who didn’t advance to the next step, import a list of these candidates into an email campaign and send a personalized automated email with a note explaining your decision to not go forward with their application. This at least gives them closure about your company as they continue their search and avoids any hurt feelings of being ghosted.
Give Feedback to Candidates Further in the Process
In a typical job search, hiring managers will interview anywhere between three to five candidates. It’s a big step considering that you both take time to evaluate each other and form opinions about one another. An interview makes a job posting suddenly become real and extremely personal. Like any other form of communication, both parties should offer each other feedback. The candidate will inform you of their interests and concerns with the position so you can address it, and you should do the same for the candidate so they can address any concerns you may have. Open communication is the best way to evaluate one another. Don’t lose out on that opportunity.
Utilize a Recruiter
We know that sometimes remembering to get back to candidates can slip your mind when you still have your full time job to do. That’s where your recruiter comes in. In addition to handling the recruitment process for you, your recruiter acts as the ambassador to your company and their entire job is to keep you and the candidates in the know throughout the entire process. Utilizing an experienced recruiter you trust is the best way to ensure that candidates have a positive and seamless experience throughout the application process, thereby, leaving a positive lasting impression about your company. At DCAProSearch, we understand how sensitive recruiting can be for both you and the candidates and we ensure that we approach every search with humility and respect for everyone involved.
Although recruiting can be stressful, it is just as stressful for the candidates applying to be a part of your team. Simple recruiting etiquette can mean the world to candidates and leave them with a good impression of you and your company regardless of the outcome. It’s the same courtesy you would hope to receive if you were in their shoes. For a strong recruitment partner and to find out more about how we approach a search to fill your important positions, visit our website.