The job transaction is a triad. There is applicant, candidate and employer.
During last night’s #TChat Employer Black Holes and the Candidate Experience, it was question #4 that differentiated and clarified things for me:
Q4: Should the candidate experience apply to applicants? When does an applicant become a ‘candidate?’
The answer to that is when you’re qualified and you make the “short list.” Because until that point you’re not qualified, and in today’s market, there’s a lot more of you out there looking for work who aren’t.
Even with the volume of career applicants today, there’s a lot that be done to “humanize” the process and at the very least auto-acknowledge folks thanking them for applying to your job openings.
So I’ll repeat some of what I shared in my post the other day – The Employer/Applicant Transaction: Acknowledgement and Closure.
There’s only one job per multiple applicants/candidates, so what has their experience been with American corporations and SMB and startups alike?
Overall, pretty poorly. I mean, it’s not news to know how poor the applicant/candidate experience is and has been for a long, long time.
Businesses do owe applicants and candidates at least two things regardless of the position level being applied for. That’s it. Two things that I’ve done as an employer over the years:
Acknowledgement – simply that you’ve applied and we acknowledge that. Thank you.
Closure – simply that you are or are not qualified for the position, that you are or are not getting the job, there are or are not other opportunities with us, and we acknowledge all these things in a consistent and timely manner. Thank you.
There were a lot of other nicer sentiments for how employers should treat their applicants/candidates, but it’s still simply these two things. And you sure better do it with your short list of candidates regardless of industry or position. It’s best practice for your workplace culture brand.
You can read the transcript from last night here, and these were the questions posed to everyone:
- Q1: Is the applicant ‘black hole’ experience real when applying for a job? If so, why does it exist?
- Q2: How does candidate/applicant experience impact employment brand or company culture?
- Q3: At a minimum, what should job seekers expect from employers to which they apply?
- Q4: Should the candidate experience apply to applicants? When does an applicant become a ‘candidate?’
- Q5: What are some creative ways job seekers can get through the black hole or recruiters can handle the applicant tsunami?
- Q6: Job seekers: What has your candidate experience been like during your most recent job hunt?
- Q7: Employers: what are you doing to improve candidate experience?