Create a Positive Experience for Successful Recruiting: 4 Easy Steps
With unemployment running high and job candidates seemingly abundant, it’s easy to slip into bad habits when going through the hiring process. After all, there are plenty of fish in the sea. In the press of time, how easily we forget not only common courtesy, but the fact that today’s rejected candidate could be tomorrow’s prized hire. Remember, candidates are evaluating you as much as you are evaluating them. Treating candidates shabbily during the hiring process is simply bad business. And it’s probably not the way your mama raised you, either. Here are a few simple ways you can maintain positive feelings between you and your candidates, even the ones you don’t hire.
- Respond promptly and politely to all inquiries. Even if the response is “thanks, but no thanks,” the candidate will respect your professionalism and will know what to expect the next time he or she sees a job opening they feel they can fill.
- Schedule your candidates’ interviews thoughtfully. Chances are any candidate you’re interested in will need to speak with more than one person and, of course, everyone is busy. But of course the candidate’s time is valuable, too. If you cancel interviews, blow schedules and keep her waiting excessively, she’ll know exactly how important she is to your company and accord you the same measure of respect. That’s no way to start a successful relationship. Make sure you ask what’s convenient for the candidate. Make follow-up calls. Juggle schedules if you have to. Prepare and distribute interview schedules. For some candidates, you may want to make travel arrangements and hotel accommodations. And don’t forget to provide a welcoming smile and positive attitude when the candidate walks through the door.
- Get back to your candidate quickly after the interview. Interviewing for a new position is an anxiety-filled experience. The candidate is sure to leave wondering what the outcome will be. The interview probably ended with a commitment on the part of your company to get back to the candidate by a particular date. Missing that date is simply cruel. You owe him a response by the agreed date, even if only to tell the candidate you’ve made no decision yet. If you’ve set no date for a response, you still owe him one promptly. Don’t leave people hanging!
- Be prepared to answer honestly why a candidate was not chosen. Everyone knows only one candidate can be chosen to fill a single opening. Most candidates will readily—if not happily—accept your decision to hire another. A wise candidate will ask what was behind your decision, not to put you on the spot, but to enable herself to be better prepared the next time around. Having taken up her valuable time with a process that proved fruitless for her, you owe her the few moments it takes to respond candidly. She will appreciate it and you will have earned her respect.