Refine your recruiting process by thinking like a candidate

by | Aug 15, 2023 | Blog, Recruiting

  • DeDe Kelley

    DeDe Kelley is the Talent Acquisition Director for Integrity HR, a human resource consulting and outsourcing firm in Louisville, Kentucky. She has over 20 years of experience in talent acquisition, management, and development, serving industries such as quick serve, fitness, convenience stores, gaming, social services, and clinical and non-clinical medical offices.

If you’re immersed in the world of hiring or are an employer looking to snag the best talent, then you’ve come to the right place. Let’s navigate the recruiting process together – with a fresh perspective.

Today’s theme? Think like a candidate. Yes, it’s a fun twist on the age-old advice “put yourself in their shoes”

Why Should You Think Like a Candidate During the Recruiting Process

Before delving into the strategies, it’s essential to understand the ‘why’. When you think like a candidate, you’re adopting a candidate-centric approach to recruiting. This means you’re not just looking to fill a vacancy; you’re seeking the *right* fit for both the role and the company culture. And the best way to understand what that perfect fit looks like? Get into the candidate’s mind!

1. Make the First Impression Count

We all know the saying, “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” But in the world of job searching, first impressions matter.  Just as candidates strive to make a good first impression, companies absolutely need to as well.

Website and Job Listings: Ensure your company’s career page is user-friendly, has an aesthetic appeal, and most importantly, has clear, concise job listings. A complicated or unengaging application process can deter potential candidates.

Engaging Content: Share posts, blogs, or videos highlighting your office culture. A virtual office tour, perhaps? It’ll be like an open house, minus the cookies and awkward small talk.

2. Embrace Transparency

Candidates don’t just want to know about the role; they want a glimpse into their potential future with the company.

A Day in The Life: During the interview let the candidate know what their average day will look like and who their teammates will be. This paints a picture for them allowing them to place themselves in the role.

Clear Role Descriptions: Job descriptions should be clear about the expectations and growth opportunities. Remember, ambiguity is the enemy of enthusiasm!

Salary and Benefits: While some flexibility is understandable, having a clear range or ballpark can attract the right candidates. Nobody likes playing the guessing game.

3. Keep Communication Channels Open

Remember when you applied for a job and waited for weeks, wondering if your application entered a black hole? Yep, not a great feeling.

Acknowledge Receipt: Let candidates know that you’ve received their application. A simple automated email can work wonders.

Regular Updates: If there’s a delay in the process, communicate. Keep candidates in the loop.

4. Offer Flexibility

Want to be competitive? Great! Then offer the modern candidate flexibility. With the rise of remote work and varied schedules, it’s something they’re likely to seek.

Work Hours: If the job allows, why not offer flexible working hours? Early birds and night owls will thank you.

Location: If the pandemic taught us one thing, it’s that remote work is here to stay. If possible, consider offering remote working options, even if only part-time.

5. Seek Feedback

After interviews, take a moment to ask candidates about their experience. Was there something they particularly liked or disliked about the recruiting process? This feedback is golden.

6. Build Relationships

Not every candidate will be the right fit immediately. But they might be perfect for a future role. Keep in touch, send occasional updates, and foster a relationship. Think of it as planting seeds for future blossoming opportunities.

There’s no one-size-fits-all approach in the recruiting process but adopting a candidate-centric strategy is sure to put you ahead of the curve. Remember, it’s a two-way street. As much as candidates are trying to impress potential employers, companies should be doing the same. After all, in the grand theatre of recruitment, both employer and candidate are actors seeking the perfect scene partner.

So, the next time you’re drafting a job listing or sitting across the table from a potential hire, channel your inner candidate. What would make you click “apply”? Or what would make you excited to join a new team? Sometimes, the best way to move forward professionally is to take a step back and think personally.

Happy hiring and remember – when in doubt, think like a candidate! Need help with recruiting? Contact Integrity HR today!

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