How Recruiters Can Better Manage Job Seeker Expectations – Part 2

Managing job seeker expectations is a critical component of your larger hiring and recruiting processes. This article is part of a three part series about effectively managing job seeker expectations and the larger impact of communication and engagement for candidates who become employees and those we decide aren’t a fit for our company.

In part 1, we discussed the ways to set candidate expectations and how critical they are to the larger employer brand. In part 2, we continue the discussion by looking at how transparency and feedback throughout the hiring process impacts the larger employer and business brand.

Seek Feedback and Be Transparent

Giving all candidates a timeline for the hiring and recruiting process is essential. That doesn’t mean total transparency, like telling them about every detail about your day or telling them which candidate you currently favor. It simply means that you should give every candidate who applies for a job with you a sense of when they can expect to hear from you next, and importantly, if and when it’s time for them to move on.

To do that you should be very clear about your process at every step: having public and ideally short close dates on your job postings; sending automated, and when necessary, personalized responses to applications and follow-ups; and being open and honest about whether and when they will advance to the next stage of the hiring process.

Building your hiring process around honesty, communication, and transparency won’t make every candidate will happy. But it will help you to improve your process so that more people are engaged and satisfied with your candidate communication process. One of my favorite insights into transparency comes from  CEO of VaynerMedia, Gary Vaynerchuk. He provides a CEO-centric look into workplace transparency. His approach is “I can’t fix what I don’t know.” Without a two way conversation and dialogue, you won’t know what’s working and what’s not, in your hiring process.

Vaynerchuck, whose video interview is included below, shares why he encourages job candidates to visit his company’s Glassdoor reviews. The reviews provide a candidate-centric opinion of their company culture and recruiting processes. Interestingly enough, he seems them as a candidate filtering tool, weeding out those candidates who are swayed by anonymous reviewers.

Be Honest and Upfront About the Recruiting & Hiring Process

One of the biggest frustrations of job seekers is the lack of transparent communication between candidates, recruiters and hiring managers. Job candidates – even those who are internal to the organization – might not be aware of established processes or recruiting workflows. It’s our responsibility as ambassadors for the organization to be honest, timely and upfront with our candidates throughout the process. Sometimes this means delivering the candidate job feedback that they might not want to hear, meaning that the organization is going forward with another candidate.

It’s in our human nature to avoid those uncomfortable situations, however, being honest with candidates is essential to building good relationships individually and within your larger talent network. Leading candidates on is cruel and people are always more likely to share bad experiences than good. Having a project management tool like Comeet allows you to manage your relationship with candidates right. It makes it easy to keep track of who’s done what and when, ensuring that no applicants get lost in the shuffle and leave your hiring process with a bad impression that can hurt your employer brand.

Managing candidate expectations is crucial to having a smooth hiring process and building a strong employer brand. Unexplained delays, unclear communication about the next steps and radio silence can cause anxiety for job seekers and make it harder for you to recruit good people in the long run. Accountability, transparency, and communication are what will allow you to attract and hire the kind of candidates you really need.

This is part 2 of a three part series that dives deeper into managing candidate communications as part of the hiring and recruiting process. Click here to see part 1. 

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