How Excellent Candidate Experience Boosts Retention Rates

Did you know that your candidate experience's quality directly impacts your staff retention rate?

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Employee retention is an essential metric for determining a company’s long-term profitability and efficiency. Fully-trained employees with years of experience with your enterprise understand the necessary skills, procedures, and attitudes to efficiently keep work flowing.

As such: Retaining experienced staff is key to the productive, streamlined day-to-day running of your business.

On top of that, your company culture also benefits. It stands to reason that employees are more in tune with one another when they’ve shared a prolonged coworking relationship.

It may surprise you to hear that high turn-over rates often come down to the initial candidate experience. Organizations offering poor onboarding experiences are 50% more likely to experience high turnover rates.

That’s right.

The recruitment process significantly impacts how well employees go on to perform at your company. With that in mind, here’s how an excellent candidate experience encourages new hires to stick with your company for the long haul…

Why Low Staff Retention Rates Matter

A degree of turn-over is natural in any company. Employees come and go for several reasons. In fact, companies, on average, experience a turnover rate of 10.9 percent.

That being said, the lower your staff turnover rate, the better. Poor retention costs companies dearly. In 2018, employers lost more than $600 billion in turnover costs. These expenses concern recruiting and training new employees, as well as the drop in productivity during that time.

Interestingly, an entry-level employee costs 50% of their salary on average to replace. This rises to 250% if you’re replacing department leaders and/or highly skilled employees.

But, for most employees that quit, their recruitment experience may still be a recent memory. Namely, because as many as 75% of employees leave within the first five years.

So how can you ensure your candidate experience improves the likeliness of them becoming loyal employees? Hopefully, ones that will stay with your company for years to come?

Below we’ve outlined a few suggestions:

Set Realistic Expectations From the Start


Employees often leave sooner than expected when they realize their job isn’t what they imagined. This can easily cause a disconnect between the candidate and the day to day takes required from them. Perhaps the employee isn’t interested in what their job actually entails? Or maybe they lack the skills to do the job justice? Either way, a whopping 80% of all employee turnover comes down to poor hiring decisions.

To nip this problem in the bud, recruiters should set realistic expectations from the start. For instance, they could include more detailed job descriptions in their primary job advertisements. To take this a step further, consider setting the applicant situational tests. These require the candidate to handle a typical challenge they might face during their work. These tests work wonders for providing the candidate (and yourself) an insight into whether they’re a good fit for the role.

Value-Based Hiring

Your recruitment process should also draw the applicant’s values and personalities into the equation. Explaining to candidates your company culture and assessing whether they fit into that system is an integral part of hiring.

A shocking 73% have left a job due to a poor cultural fit. As such, companies that ascertain whether the candidate complements their workplace culture should enjoy a better retention rate. This also has the added benefit of enhancing your candidate experience by including them in the social and interpersonal aspects of your company from the get-go.

Employee Onboarding Impacts the Retention Rate of New Hires


Onboarding is an often overlooked part of the candidate experience – but it really shouldn’t be. After all, this is your new hire’s first introduction to the company. It sets the tone for their stay there. A bad onboarding experience can lead to a quick turn-over, which is one reason why 20% of new hires quit within the first 45 days of entering a new role.

To improve your onboarding process, have a mentor available to answer any questions the new recruit may have. This same mentor should also help them integrate with the team as soon as possible, and provide adequate support during their first few months. This involves checking in with them regularly and providing timely and constructive feedback.

Keep up Emotional Momentum. Make Candidates Stay Longer

The concept of emotional momentum refers to maintaining the excitement and enthusiasm of a new recruit. Candidates start this journey from the moment they interact with your job listing.

Then during each step of the recruitment process, the employer has the opportunity to re-engage an applicant and keep their enthusiasm high. Suppose emotional momentum is maintained throughout the candidate experience…candidates are far more likely to retain it throughout their early days on the job, and far beyond.

Want to know more about how to improve your candidate experience? If so, download our free eBook today: The Ultimate Guide to the Candidate Experience. Enjoy!

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