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How To Improve Your Candidate Communication

Shaun Ricci

June 7, 2018

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Anyone in talent acquisition understands that applicants want to be communicated with.

improving candidate communication

The stats on this are everywhere:

CareerBuilder found 84% of applicants expect some type of email response early in the hiring process.

Software Advice found the top requests of job seekers were:

  1. More communication
  2. Notification if passed over
  3. Timeline of hiring process
  4. Human contact after application
  5. Timeliness of replies

Unsurprisingly, 4 of the top 5 aspects that candidates want improved involve better communication.

So why don’t we communicate better? Time.

We’re managing too many open requisitions and have too much on our plate and only a certain number of hours in the day. This is where leveraging automation and technology becomes so invaluable.

5 key candidate touch points

First, we need to determine what exactly and when exactly we need to be communicating.

Let’s start with data from SmashFly:

Get ready to have your mind blown: Of the organizations that captured candidate information for job alerts or a talent network: 48% of them never sent an email to them after confirmation.

This is where we can start. We’ll need communication at these points:

  • When they first opt-in to career updates
  • When they first apply
  • One week after the application
  • If we want to advance them
  • When their application is closed

That’s five instances. You could do more, but probably not less.

Leveraging automation tools

All these instances can be automated within an email marketing client or, oftentimes, a recruiting software client. They don’t need to be massively personalized. Set up a system where an email is sent one week after they applied that lets them know “Hey, we’re still evaluating! We’ll get back with you soon!”

The email when they first apply should thank them for applying, tell them updates are coming, and direct them to some resources, a video or a blog, about what it’s like to work at the company. Maybe even a link to Glassdoor reviews (if they’re positive).

The “Your application is closed” email can be short and to the point: “Thank you so much for applying. We had a ton of qualified candidates and unfortunately, it didn’t work out this time. But we will keep your resume on file for future roles!”

And then actually do it using candidate discovery.

Candidates want communication, context, and clarity. “I’m too busy” cannot be your excuse anymore because that harms your candidate experience and employer brand. Instead, leverage technology and automated email workflows – even chatbots – to make sure you’re staying on top of effective candidate communication.