Why You Shouldn’t Ignore a Single One of Your Job Applicants

February 25, 2016

When a candidate applies for a job at your company, they expect one of the following to happen:

  • They’ll receive an email that another applicant got the job, but thanking them for the application.
  • You’ll schedule an interview with them.
  • And last but not least, they’ll be told if they did or didn’t get the job and why.

Unfortunately, candidates too often feel their resume has ended up in a black hole. When they attempt to call to get feedback on their resume, they are often transferred to a recorded message or voice mail that is not answered. They rarely receive written confirmation that their resume was received or an explanation of why they were screened out.

Why this is a big problem

You’re probably thinking you’re too busy to send feedback to every single candidate that applies to your company. But, candidates do not understand the volume of resumes, follow up calls and emails you receive daily. They don’t understand your exhaustive list of recruitment responsibilities and the hiring goals you are attempting to achieve. 

They also do not understand that you can only submit candidates who have the skills, experience, stability and expertise required by your various hiring authorities. In reality, you only hire a very small percentage of the candidates you attract.

What these candidates do understand is that applying to your company turned our to be a waste of their time. Because this is their perception, your company may have just lost a future customer or hire. For example: Let’s assume you’re a national pizza franchise and I (the candidate) applied for a job but was completely ignored by you. As a result, I decide never to buy your pizza and I also tell others about my negative experience and now you’ve lost their business as well. Not to mention, none of them will want to work for you.

Ignoring applicants can also lead to backlash on social media

Unfortunately, it is often the least qualified candidates who express their dissatisfaction on social media. And, negative postings often reduce referrals as well as the number of qualified candidates you could attract. 

In this candidate-driven market, employer brand management is critical to the success of attracting top talent during your recruiting process. One of the greatest drawbacks of social media is the inaccuracy of information posted. Job seekers can reflect their negative experience without revealing if they were qualified for the opportunities they targeted. Individuals reading these negative posts may not question the accuracy and the impact is you lose a customer or future hire.

The negative impact on your employer brand is one of the primary reasons the candidate experience must be good for 100% of the candidates you attract. 

What you should do

A simple “ding” letter is better than no response. And, if possible, provide the candidates you don’t hire with resources that can assist them. 

We actually created a career portal for job seekers we don’t hire that assists them with their job search. You can review it and get some ideas of what you could create using the following link: www.myjobsearchresources.com.

  • job search resource

It’s important to note that you can’t become their free career consultant. If you provide advice, they will continue to call. But if you give them resources, the calls will stop.

The benefits of responding to every applicant

With the high volume of unsolicited resumes, the idea of responding to everyone may be daunting. But the following three benefits of improving the candidate experience are worth the effort.

  1. Increases referrals. This is one greatest benefits of improving the candidate experience. Candidates who are not hired know individuals who do have the credentials you are looking for. If they are treated with respect, they will provide you with referrals. The individuals you don’t hire are often more likely to refer others, because they hope you may consider them as a potential hire in the future. It is easier to establish rapport with referred candidates, because of the inferred level of trust.
  2. Helps you retain customers. By treated candidate with respect, you will also not lose current or future customers. Often the first impression your current customers have of your company is when they submit their resume. They may have been a loyal customer for years, but if not treated properly, they will purchase the services or products you offer from your competition. When treated well, they will continue to utilize your service or products and more than likely recommend them to others.
  3. Enhances your employer brand. Lastly and certainly not least, improving the candidate experience will enhance your employer brand. Technology has changed the landscape of recruiting forever and has certainly impacted the importance of a positive reputation. Your efforts to improve the candidate experience can also position you as an employer of choice where top talent actually approaches you for potential opportunities.  

*Image by Latteda

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