Over 24 million people voluntarily left their jobs in the second half of last year. Now companies are not only trying to recoup their lost headcount to pre-COVID levels, but over 60% of jobs being created are for brand-new roles. Many organizations are trying to grow, yet cannot meet their talent needs. The surprising thing is how often companies don’t realize that there is a problem on the inside.
Too often, poor hiring practices drive away high-quality candidates. Our latest Greenhouse Candidate Experience Report found that 84% of talent is currently job hunting or planning to in the next six months, and 60% believe that companies aren’t getting the hiring process right. The rising demand for talent and tightening labor market has empowered job seekers to cherry-pick their employer.
So, if you’re thinking about sticking with your traditional hiring process, think again.
To beat the fierce competition recruiters are facing in a tight labor market, here are five changes to make your hiring strategy a business advantage.
Time is money, so respect candidates’ time
Candidates are becoming increasingly vocal about what they want (and what they don’t want) from a potential employer. Unsurprisingly, they want to be respected. They want hiring managers to be considerate about their time, which includes streamlining the application process (no unnecessary repeat questions), being punctual and prepared for an interview, and following up in a timely manner afterward.
Candidates’ expectations on response timelines have also changed. After years of dealing with long wait times and feeling like applications were sent off into a void, almost 58% of job seekers said they now expect to hear back from companies in one week or less regarding their initial application. Companies looking to further simplify the process can integrate with services such as Calendly and GoodTime to give scheduling power to candidates.
Make the application process easy
You know those online applications in which candidates must type out every degree, previous job, and qualification that they’ve already listed on a resume they then have to attach? Candidates are no longer tolerating these arduous application forms. More than 70% of job seekers reported that they would not submit a job application if it takes longer than 15 minutes to complete.
Be generous with feedback and quick to reply
More than 70% of survey respondents expressed the desire for feedback after an interview. Providing feedback to candidates who didn’t get hired can also send a positive message about the company’s values. More than 60% of job seekers said that receiving feedback during the interview process would make them more inclined to apply for another job at that company.
Glassdoor has 50 million unique visitors each month. While most candidates will never have the opportunity to experience working for your company, they won’t hesitate to write a review describing their experience—the good and the bad. Companies should treat every potential employee with the respect afforded to their employees and customers.
Walk the talk on your DEI commitments
A shocking 43% of survey respondents reported having their name mispronounced during an interview.
Pronouncing someone’s name correctly is basic courtesy, and with Google at your fingertips, there’s really no excuse for that sort of mistake. However, mispronouncing someone’s name during the interview process can mean more to a candidate than an impolite faux pas: It can signify that the company doesn’t prioritize creating a culture of inclusivity and belonging. That’s a destructive message to send, especially since 86% of candidates of all ages say that they consider a company’s investment in diversity, equity, and inclusion when evaluating jobs.
Job seekers are looking for a meaningful commitment to DEI, not just “box-checking” gestures. They’re doing their research—investigating the makeup of leadership teams and boards, exploring employee resource groups, and reading employee reviews–to ensure that commitment is authentic.
Great experiences for candidates translate to a positive brand reputation
Companies need to recognize the effect that a negative recruitment experience can have on their reputation. Signs of disrespect—whether it’s mispronouncing a candidate’s name, showing up with the wrong candidate’s resume, or leaving a candidate hanging out in the Zoom room by themselves for 30 minutes—indicate that your company doesn’t value people. Perhaps it’s no surprise to some, but an astounding 75% of candidates have been ghosted after an interview.
Hiring is a strategic function, not an administrative one. Hiring can make or break your business. And the days of employers ruling out candidates for trivial issues like typos in their resumes are over. Talented candidates are in high demand. They have information, control, and, most importantly, choices. They want a seamless, modern hiring experience, and companies that fail to deliver it will suffer the consequences.
While a lot of these changes may seem basic, most companies aren’t doing them. This failure to create an ideal candidate experience puts businesses at a disadvantage. Creating a positive candidate experience has never been more important. The whole hiring process—from online application to employment offer or rejection—is an employer’s chance to make a first, and lasting, impression.
Daniel Chait is the CEO and cofounder of Greenhouse, the hiring software company, and the coauthor of Talent Makers: How the Best Organizations Win Through Structured and Inclusive Hiring.