How to Improve Your Candidate Experience: A Step by Step Guide

Unfortunately for recruiters, we’re in the midst of an unprecedented labor shortage. As such, the importance of providing a first-rate candidate experience has never been so crucial. Competition between organizations to hire high-quality talent across a variety of roles is fierce, and the candidate experience is one way you can strengthen your employer brand and set yourself apart from other companies.

If you haven’t worked on your candidate experience before, you might not know where to begin. So, in this article, we’re walking you through our step-by-step guide for establishing and maintaining an excellent candidate experience.

Let’s get straight down to it…

Get an Insight Into Your Current Candidate Experience

Once you’ve had a set of applicants filter through your entire recruitment funnel, you can start analyzing what the experience is genuinely like.

The first step is to collect data. The most efficient data collection method is to simply reach out to your present candidates and current staff to get their opinion. Then, consolidate this information into a report so that you can see where your recruitment process could improve and where it did well.

Use these insights to formulate your next steps and define your overarching goals and objectives for enhancing your candidate experience.


Map the Candidate Journey

Once you’ve analyzed the current state of your candidate experience, it’s time to create a clearer roadmap.

The goal is creating a streamlined process that all your recruiters can follow and execute. This means charting the candidate’s journey by identifying each and every touchpoint – from the moment a candidate sees a job ad online to receiving a job offer.

All applications should follow this roadmap. With a standardized process in play, it’s much easier to identify pain points and respond to feedback.

Identify the Best Platforms for Job Ads

The candidate experience starts with applicants finding your job ad. You might advertise jobs directly on your website, social media, or via job boards. However, it’s important to determine where most of your applicants are coming from so that you can allocate resources to the platforms that bear the most fruit.

Then prioritize these channels by ensuring the job application process is as quick and easy as possible.


Optimize Your Job Ads

Make the job offer as transparent as possible from the get-go. One of the easiest ways to do this is to speak to your current employees to identify what skills and experience distinguish the top performers. Then, use this info to fuel the content of your job ad.

Listing everyday tasks, responsibilities, and necessary skills will help candidates filter themselves out if they’re uninterested in the realistic scope of the work.

On top of providing a detailed job description, be upfront about the hiring process. If it involves multiple stages, tell candidates about them, so they know what to expect.

Over Communicate Rather Than Undercommunicate

Anna at SumUp talks about communication with candidates during the Candidate Experience Talks podcast. She found that increasing communication often improved the candidate experience. Even when there’s no update to share, staying in touch with applicants waiting to hear back helps keep them engaged in the process. Continuous feedback and interaction make applicants feel seen and appreciated, helping alleviate any anxiety surrounding the process.

Listen to the full episode of Candidate Experience Talks with Anna below.

Listen to Candidate Experience Talks on Spotify Listen to Candidate Experience Talks on Apple Podcasts Listen to Candidate Experience Talks on Google Podcasts

Make it Mobile-Friendly

In some sectors, as many as 61% of applications in 2020 were made via mobile. This stat alone stresses the need for responsive assessments and job ads. So, ensure applicants can quickly fill out forms from the convenience of their mobile devices and view all relevant information in a responsive format.

Are You Ready to Improve Your Candidate Experience?

The most important thing to remember is that while candidates undertake the application process, they’re constantly asking themselves whether they want to work for you. Organizations want the answer to be a resounding “yes” and for the right reasons!

The candidate experience is an opportunity to represent your employer brand at every stage. This means making candidates aware of your values and acting in a way that reflects positively on your company.

Get notified on new blog updates

+ get our popular candidate experience ebook for free