Here’s the deal about candidate experience: it’s often pitched like it’s some tangible product, but truth be told, it’s not.
We’ve got these big shots in the industry telling us otherwise. They thrive on advising companies spooked about the fallout from a candidate having a bad experience. But let’s face it, that story’s made up. Sounds necessary, but it’s not.
Here’s how Candidate Experience probably came to be:
- Imagine this scenario: an exec’s relative applies for a job online. The system does its thing, rejects the unsuitable candidate, and sends the usual ‘Thanks, but no thanks.’ But here’s the twist!
- The exec learns that their bright relative got zero interaction or even a shot at an interview. Cue the family drama.
- To save face, the exec lays into the Talent Acquisition head about the treatment of candidates.
And voila! Candidate Experience drama unfolds—all because a relative got snubbed.
The exec, not wanting it to seem personal, drums up other reasons, and everyone just follows suit. “Treat candidates like our customers! Turn them into fans of our brand! Treat them better than ourselves; it’s a talent edge!” We start buying into this spiel, thinking our methods stink. But the fear that a sour candidate will boycott our products? It’s blown out of proportion. Only a tiny fraction think this way—just par for the course in Talent Acquisition.
For most Talent Acquisition leaders, what we’re doing is just fine. We treat candidates like regular humans, communicate whether they fit or not, and it works. Yeah, some of us might have some wonky processes, but we don’t have any huge issues. The biggest fib in HR? Making Candidate Experience out to be a big deal. Candidates aren’t asking for much—they just want to know we received their application and our thoughts on their fit. Treat them like people: a simple ‘thanks, but no thanks’ or ‘we’re interested, here’s what’s next’ does the trick. Be communicative.
It’s not brain surgery; it doesn’t need a ton of time or cash. You don’t have a real problem. I get it, everyone’s telling you otherwise, so it feels real. But trust me, it’s not!