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I’m a huge movie buff and I have to say that I love movies that keep me guessing. Movies with plot twists and surprise endings keep me engaged and glued to the screen till the very end. I like these surprises because in the end I’m there for entertainment and I want there to be a mystery of how it is going to end.
As a job seeker, mystery and suspense are not things I want to be part of the hiring equation. I want to know exactly what to expect in the apply process from how many interviews I will need to go through to how long the overall apply process will take. The less mystery and the more transparency the better!
As a recruiting company, you need to acknowledge this. The less surprises and the more upfront you are about the apply process, the better the quality of the candidates you can bring in and the more highly candidates will view your employer brand. Transparency should be practiced in all aspects of your recruitment marketing including:
Job Ad Distribution & Messaging – Make sure that you give candidates a good understand of what the job will involve and what benefits they will receive from it. Make sure to include location of the job as well as what departments you will work for / with. You don’t want candidates to have the interview and bow out once they here what the job really is. It’s a waste of time for both of you.
Also, make sure you use the right job boards for the target audience you are trying to recruit. A great way to do this is to collect real-time recruitment metrics that provide data on a per job basis. So you can segment by type of position (i.e. IT, Sales, Marketing, etc.) to figure out the most effective boards for certain business disciplines.
Notifications – One of the worst feelings for job seekers is submitting a resume and not hearing back. Candidates have no idea of whether you read it, it got lost in the ATS or you are still considering them. A simple automated message with some time expectation for getting back to them is a great way to keep candidates in the loop.
Interview Schedules – When you bring a candidate in for an interview, make sure to let them know who they will be meeting with as well as where they are in the interview process (i.e. is this the 2nd of 4 interviews). Give them an expectation of what the process will look like and you’ll probably cut down on the annoying follow up emails you receive from candidates.
Decisions – Just like with interviews give them an expectation of when you will make a final decision. Also, when you do not choose a candidate, don’t just say you’ll contact them if other positions open up but provide them with ways to keep in touch with future job openings (email opt-in, Twitter, Facebook, Career Site).
Being transparent in your apply process can provide huge benefits in terms of keeping top candidates engaged in your hiring process. Candidates love surprises on birthdays and in movies, but when it comes to careers, stick with transparency!