A new client recently said to us, “When I worked with X (another recruiter), I had a lot of candidates drop out towards the end of the process. What can you do to solve that?”
We spoke about our processes, our set timescales, and how we manage candidate engagement. But then we spoke about what the client could do to stop it happening.
Because sometimes, urgent business needs get in the way of hiring. A hiring manager begins a search and their criteria changes. The candidate isn’t entirely sure what the interview process will look like. Or they don’t feel like there’s enough enthusiasm for their role from the business.
Clearly Define Why You’re Hiring
It’s common for candidate criteria to change during the hiring process. Business needs can change and experienced recruiters are used to it. But, it can lengthen the process and frustrate candidates who were previously engaged.
It’s why we have a indepth call with the Hiring Manager and key stakeholders for every role, figuring out why the business is hiring for this role, how it might develop in future, and how they can future-proof this hire.
When a business defines the reason it needs this role filled, it can often change their requirements. If it’s a job in AI or an emerging industry, specific experience might not matter as much as adaptability and enthusiasm for learning new things.
Candidates Like to Be Sold To
Through decades of hiring, we’ve found that every candidate is, to some degree, passive, whether they’re actively job hunting or not. That makes good candidate engagement very important in the process.
That means they want to be sold the job by the hiring manager or recruiter. The candidate wants to know what the company they’re potentially joining is like and what the interview process looks like. For companies, that means working on improving their EVP and if they’re using a recruitment partner, ensuring they know as much about the businesses’ offering for employees as the Hiring Manager does.
Long Interview Processes Turn Candidates Off
Or, more accurately, uncertain interview processes turn candidates off.
A 2019 survey by Indeed showed 13% of job seekers ghosted a business because there wasn’t enough engagement with the recruiter or Hiring Manager.
At Solutions Driven, one of the first things we do when we take on a new job is to define timescales with our client. That has the obvious benefit of the business being sure their hire will be delivered on time.
It also allows us to communicate effectively with the candidate, letting them know how many steps the process takes and how long it’s expected to go on for. Obviously if it’s a more senior role, the interview process can take some time, but our rule of thumb is four interviews are ideal, max five, with interview stages over 5/6 weeks.
This way, candidates stay engaged and it gives the employers enough time to get to know them well enough to make a decision.
Aftercare is Important
If you decide to hire a candidate it’s important that you make them feel really wanted. (After all, job-seekers like to feel sold to.) We encourage our clients to set up a call after making the offer to allow the candidate to ask any remaining questions and to cement how much the business wants them to become part of the team.
At Solutions Driven, this works alongside our 6F methodology, where we ensure someone is right for a role and a company by looking at their compatibility in Fit, Freedom, Family, Fulfilment, Fortune and Future. But, if the candidate doesn’t make the final cut, that doesn’t mean you want to sever all ties with them.
After all, while they might not be right right now, they may be perfect for another role or at a later date. Providing feedback on their strengths and weaknesses, and any concerns will ensure the candidate leaves the process on good terms.
And it helps protect how your EVP is seen by other job seekers because 59% of job seekers who have a bad experience will tell others not to apply for a role in the business.
Obviously, none of these steps can guarantee that great candidates won’t drop out. In five or six weeks, great people will have other offers, no matter how engaged they are with your business. The key is to find the balance between getting enough information on your candidates to make an informed decision, while still checking in with them to ensure they feel wanted and “sold to”.
Most Hiring Managers don’t have time for that. It’s why, if you want to get the best person for your role, it’s worth bringing in a recruitment expert. They’ll help you define your offering, streamline your hiring process, and keep candidates engaged.