Just for the record: Having a ‘lit’ candidate experience does not mean that Gen Z will want to set it on fire. It rather means that they’ll respond positively to the process you’ve put together. And now that we have that out of the way, we can move on to the subject at hand.
In order for your company to successfully recruit top early-career talent, you need to have a strong (and positive) candidate experience at the core of everything you do.
But don’t fret if your candidate experience isn’t exactly what applicant dreams are made of. Like a phoenix, your company’s candidate experience can rise up to become one that Gen Z loves—as long as you focus on the following areas.
It starts by showcasing your company culture, whether on social media and your company’s website or in partnership with third-party vendors and publishers. This acts as a powerful recruiting tool by letting potential candidates understand what their work involves. And it gives job seekers an insider’s look into your culture, so they can determine if they would be a good fit and should join.
One way to accomplish this is by creating a culture deck that highlights critical aspects of your company that you can share with prospective candidates. Highlight your business’s vision, mission, and value statements, and include recent press clippings and other events.
Ideally, your company will share its culture deck the same place it does its job listings. Fortunately, WayUp allows companies to both create profiles (where they can showcase company culture) and list job openings that they can promote to our more than 5 million users.
Your job descriptions are a part of the candidate experience. When writing them, think of how you can engage prospective applicants while still accurately reflecting the job’s responsibilities. One last point: Make sure you don’t include subliminally sexist language.
Once your company has attracted candidates, it’s important that your application is user-friendly. Be mindful of Millennials and Gen Z by making the application mobile-friendly. This means keeping screener questions to a minimum, unless you don’t mind losing up to 40 percent of job seekers.
Unfortunately, hiring managers spend 13 hours per work week reviewing resumes. But say goodbye to the days of slowly working your way through a seemingly never-ending pile of resumes in order to find top talent. Thanks to new technology, that process can be reduced to mere minutes.
Once an application is submitted, it should be routed quickly for review. The last thing you want is for applications to end up in the dreaded resume black hole (the place where 98 percent of resumes are banished, never to be heard from again). An easy—and necessary—way to prevent a negative candidate experience caused by this is to acknowledge an applicant’s resume submission.
From there, let your candidates know sooner rather than later whether or not they’re still in contention for the job. But even if the candidate isn’t the right fit for a specific job, you should still keep them warm by letting them know there may be roles in the future they’re better qualified for. This helps companies create a deep talent pool for future recruiting.
Providing an interview agenda creates a positive candidate experience. So send the candidate:
They’ll then be able to properly prepare for the interview by researching the company, prepping answers to interview questions, and understanding the interviewers’ roles. This should happen at any point in the hiring process where a candidate will interact with your company.
Another way to prevent wasting a candidate’s (and an employer’s) time is to conduct an initial phone screen with potential qualified candidates. For starters, it’s convenient for the candidate, since it doesn’t require them to commute for an interview. And it allows companies to find out quickly whether or not a candidate is qualified. This mitigates productivity loss.
How can you know whether or not candidates are having a positive candidate experience? By finding out from them directly.
Ask candidates to fill out a survey on which parts of the interview process they liked (or didn’t). Ideally, the survey will contain four or five questions, including some open-ended ones that’ll allow them to freely provide feedback.
Also, after any interview—whether it was the initial phone screen or an in-person meeting—companies should provide interview feedback. This should include whether or not the candidate is moving onto the next phase of the hiring process (and if they’re not, explain why in a constructive manner). If the candidate is, explain what those next steps involve, and do so shortly after the interview.
At this point, your company wants to bring in several candidates for in-person interviews. Remember, it needs to provide an efficient interview process. Instead of having eight interviews for qualified candidates, consider holding two rounds. This prevents candidates from “ghosting,” and helps provide a positive candidate experience.
At the end of the hiring process, your company is either ready to offer a candidate the position or it knows that the candidate is no longer in consideration. Regardless, you need to close the loop and communicate with the candidate.
If your company follows these steps, it’ll turn its candidate experience from an “F” to an “A,” and maybe even one that Gen Z thinks is so lit that it uses those two letters to form a certain popular acronym.