Why SMEs Need To Prioritise Their Candidate Experience

Written by
Screenloop
Published on
August 10, 2022

A shocking 20% of skilled workers in the UK are looking to change jobs in the coming year, one of the more prominent side effects of the Great Reshuffle. A large population of Gen Z and millennials in the workforce are seeking to quit their job due to dissatisfaction and a desire for better compensation on the job. 

As an SME focused on agile growth, you cannot afford to have a team of employees made of up average performers. It has always been a challenge to find good talent, but the post-pandemic workforce prospecting has become even more difficult. 

There are now more open positions than unemployed people; companies are jostling for positions and every company is hard pressed to put its best foot forward in dealing with new candidates in the talent pipeline. 

The overall cost benefits of hiring the right candidate are massive—you save the company the time of constant follow-up, correction, retraining, and in some cases, discipline when you deal with excellent performers in the workplace. 

Having a candidate that also makes a noticeable contribution to your organisation and reduces the cost of high turnover would help your organisation keep your financial goals on track.

The process of building candidate experience begins from the moment your prospects hear about your company, right up until the point where they are integrated into your organisation.

The effects of positive (or negative) candidate experience have a wide impact, affecting job satisfaction, return on recruitment investments, sustaining company culture, creating customer loyalty, and future team performance.

5 Strategies To Improve Candidate Experience

Build An Attractive Employer Brand

A study made by LinkedIn shows that 75% of candidates would research the company’s brand before considering a job offer. 

You can expect candidates to check your website, Glassdoor reviews and your social media channels to learn more about the company’s achievements, history, and culture and to decide whether working with your organisation is a career-enhancing move.

Your company’s website is the first port of call for many potential candidates, so make sure it is updated with relevant and up-to-date information about your company.  Employee stories also create the same effect that case studies have with your prospective clients—convince them that your organisation is a good fit as a partner for navigating the future. 

Empower Your Team With Interview Training And Coaching

Consider the needs of your recruiting team before your candidate walks in through the door. Smart candidates can quickly pick up on discrepancies in your interviewing process and negatively impact their candidate journey. 

As you go through the training with your hiring team, set out clear expectations and expected learning outcomes (like relearning the company’s value proposition) so everyone on the team works toward the same goals. 

Depending on the particular talent you’re hiring for, the training content for your hiring team should be specifically tailored to the role designed for your ideal candidate.

But perhaps, most importantly, communicate honestly and openly with your team about performance in training sessions. After training, evaluate the participants and provide metrics to track progress as well feedback on the improvements (or lack thereof) of the training. 

Leverage digital transformation

Recruiters often find themselves plagued with the uncertainty of whether or not they are making the right hiring decisions. Your company may be faced with the same problem. 

There exists a black hole of interview intelligence where hiring managers, heads of people operations, and interviewers do not have sufficient data to decide who’s a good fit and who is not. What happens? They hesitate and the competition scoops up the star-studded candidate.

But with candidate feedback, AI-based video interviewing and modern referencing, you get immediate feedback from every candidate which improves your follow-up and ultimately leads to a great, unbiased hire. 

With Screenloop, you also get access to assessment metrics like punctuality and talk speed and actionable data on areas for improvement, which ultimately helps your company optimise the candidate experience, attract the best talent and reduce time-to-hire. Your interviewing process becomes streamlined as you interview better and faster. 

Diversity and Inclusion

The changing socio-cultural landscape has added a new requirement candidates consider when prospecting for a new job opportunity. 

Your ideal candidate may skip over your detailed job description if they find your choice of words (which is a reflection of your company’s culture) to be exclusionary or biased.

Open communication between top-level executives and employees, especially on difficult topics,  can show your prospective candidates that your company has a culture of inclusivity.

As your company works towards improving your diversity and inclusion culture, it is important to ask candidates fair and consistent questions so the team can objectively compare candidates side-by-side, and reduce the influence of unconscious bias  and “gut-feel” decision making.

Clear and Concise Communication

Communication is the basis on which any sustainable relationship is built and rarely is it more evident as in the candidate recruitment process.  

Your contact details as an organisation should be accessible at the right time and inquiries promptly attended to. 

Communication also extends beyond the interviewing process to post-analysis and assessments where your candidates expect to receive on-time notification about the success (or otherwise) of their job hunting efforts. 

The hiring season can sometimes present a slim window of opportunity to the candidates with several time-sensitive offers coming in through the door at the same time. While your company’s goals and vision remains the focus, you should also do whatever possible to help your candidates make the best decisions for themselves. 

This involves giving quality feedback post-assessment, the frequency and format of communication, salary negotiation, and employee benefits.

Improve your entire candidate experience for outstanding interviews, applications, onboarding and more

To discover more tips like these but for every aspect of the candidate experience (complete with up-to-date recruitment statistics), download our candidate experience checklist. The checklist is an active document for all employers to help create more than just interview excellence but perfection in all parts of recruitment.


Click the link below to get instant access today.

screenloop candidate experience checklist

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