Candidate Experience

The world of hiring is more candidate-driven than ever before. A variety of employment opportunities, coupled with the rising bargaining power of employees, has lifted candidate experience to the top of many organizations’ list of talent acquisition and workforce management priorities. Generally, the better the candidate experience, the more likely an organization is to attract the best talent. Top candidates demand compelling experiences during and after the hiring process.

This section delves into how to inform your own strategy for engaging and attracting candidates to ensure a great experience.


How to Create and Provide a Positive Candidate Experience


Today, candidates have more choices, making it harder for employers to differentiate themselves and establish how their values, company culture and employees represent a unique opportunity for top candidates. Through a positive candidate experience, organizations can gain the trust and loyalty of applicants who may become advocates for an organization and help bolster their employer brand.

27% of candidates who have a bad experience would actively discourage others from applying and 77% of candidates are likely to share positive experiences with those in their network.

Source: LinkedIn

Candidate Experience Touchpoints

Each touchpoint throughout the hiring process—from attraction and sourcing to onboarding—should be taken into consideration when optimizing your candidate experience.

Employer branding:

In today’s digital-obsessed world, most candidates use the internet to research a potential employer prior to applying for a job. Having a strong employer brand not only helps build a connection with a prospective hire, but it introduces them to what makes your organization different and why your organization is a great place to work.

Make a good first impression:
Career pages need to be designed to capture an applicant’s interest. An effective career site should make visitors feel welcome and give applicants the information they are looking for, such as details about employment opportunities, company culture and work environment.

57% of candidates conduct their preliminary research by visiting an organization’s website.

Source: CareerBuilder

Respond to Candidates

There is a huge opportunity for organizations to provide superior communication and recruitment marketing. It will make an impact on applicants, whether the response is an automated email, a letter or a phone call.

47% of candidates never receive any form of communication from the organization they apply to.

Source: CareerBuilder

Improving the Application Process

Employees often lose out on qualified candidates because they lack a streamlined and easy application process. Candidates look for mobile-friendly applications, well-written job descriptions and short, easy to navigate applications.

53% of 18 to 29-year-olds and 43% of all survey respondents have used a smartphone as part of a job search.

Source: Pew Research

Mobile-friendly applications:

Many employers still offer an outdated or poorly designed mobile application experience. Because so many candidates learn about job opportunities on their mobile devices, organizations need to create a mobile-friendly application experience.

Job descriptions:

A well-written job description can engage a candidate and convince them to apply for a position. Organizations should perform a quality check on their job descriptions and ask the question, “Could these descriptions describe any company?” If they can, the descriptions probably rely on a list of generic skills and traits, which may deter top candidates from applying while inviting unqualified ones.

Shorten applications:

The length of a job application can have a major impact on candidate experience.

89% of potential applicants abandon the application process if there are 45 or more screening questions. What’s more, 43% of candidates spent more than 30 minutes completing an application, and 12% spent more than one hour.

Source: Indeed


Key Takeaways

  • With competition for talent at an all-time high, you can use your candidate experience to stand out.
  • Candidates with a positive experience will encourage others to apply, while those with a negative experience could actively discourage it.
  • Mobile job applications are essential for attracting more applicants and improving candidate response rates to job postings.

The Shifting Definition of Diversity in the Workplace


Diversity in the workplace refers to more than ethnicity and gender. Diversity within a workplace also encompasses age, religion, sexual orientation, citizenship status, military service and mental and physical conditions, as well as other distinct differences between people. A multi-generational and multi-cultural workforce today is comprised of baby boomers, millennials, Gen Z, veterans, LGBTQ+ individuals, persons with disabilities and workers across many ethnicities. This shift towards a more diverse population will have major impacts on the global workforce and how organizations address diversity in the workplace.

What Are the Benefits of Diversity in the Workplace?

67% of job seekers said a diverse workforce is important when considering job offers and 57% of employees think their companies should be more diverse.

Source: Glassdoor

The numbers are telling. Not only can organizations fill positions with qualified candidates more quickly by recruiting from diverse talent pools, but a diverse workforce also benefits employers in a host of ways, including infusing an organization with creative new ideas and perspectives.

Types of Diversity in the Workplace

Ethnic: Organizations should encourage conversation among all employees by opening lines of communication and interaction and creating inclusion programs that allow individuals to connect and grow as professionals.

Gender: Female workers continue to encounter significant obstacles in the workplace, from pay gaps to a lack of leadership roles. To help bridge the gap, employers can sponsor mentorship programs that focus on developing and supporting female talent.

Workers with disabilities: To accommodate the unique needs of disabled individuals, organizations should invest in the equipment necessary for employees with disabilities to be successful in their work environments. Employers should also ensure their facilities are ADA compliant.

Age: Workers of all ages still face discrimination—both conscious and otherwise. To combat bias, education and awareness-building about generational differences can improve collaboration among workers and increase hiring manager awareness.

LGBTQ+ workers: Creating an inclusion program is one way to support LGBTQ+ individuals. A well-run inclusion program can offer workshops, training and support from both management and HR.

How to Manage Diversity in the Workplace

Prioritize communication: To manage a diverse workplace, organizations need to ensure that they effectively communicate with employees. Policies, procedures, safety rules and other important information should be designed to accommodate employees with visual, auditory or speech impairments and to overcome language and cultural differences.

Create a supportive environment: To support diversity in the workplace, employers can promote and foster a diverse and inclusive company culture through professional development, community outreach, networking and mentorship programs.


Key Takeaways

  • Diversity has become an important indicator of workplace culture and candidates are increasingly taking it into account when applying for jobs.
  • To build a diverse workplace, it is crucial to recruit and hire talent from a variety of backgrounds.
  • Employers can promote and foster a diverse and inclusive company culture through professional development, community outreach, networking and mentorship programs.

How (and Why) to Recruit Recent Graduates


The mass exodus of baby boomers from the labor market leaves a sizable void of seasoned and experienced talent. To fill these positions, organizations are increasingly turning to recent college graduates.

Experienced leaders of the baby-boom generation continue to retire at a pace of 10,000 per day.

Source: UCLA

The Benefits of Recruiting Recent Graduates

From technical aptitude to adaptability, recent grads have characteristics that are welcome additions to an organization.

Recent graduates are ambitious and enthusiastic:

After graduation, many students are eager to begin their professional careers; they want to make a good impression, and they want to succeed.

Recent graduates are tech-savvy:

Recent graduates more than likely spent time learning and mastering new technologies, making their ability to navigate technology capabilities and functionalities second nature.

Long-term talent development:

Organizations that hire graduates and focus on developing their skills create an opportunity to recruit the leaders of the future. Organizations can groom recent graduates and equip them with the knowledge and skills needed for leadership.

Sourcing Strategies for Graduate Recruitment

To reach young talent, it’s critical for organizations to connect with them in the ways they can relate to – namely through technology.

Social media:

Social media’s ubiquitous nature makes it one of the most effective recruiting tools for Generation Z and millennials. To reach a large pool of recent college graduates, organizations should establish recruiting-focused Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook strategies to build community.

Mobile recruiting:

Mobile recruiting is growing in popularity as more and more applicants initiate their job searches on their mobile devices. Organizations can use SMS messages to alert candidates of new opportunities and coordinate interviews.

86% of recent graduates feel positive about text messages being used in the hiring process.

Source: Inc

Graduate career pages:

Members of Generation Z are always online, so investing in a well-designed, content-rich career page for students to learn about job openings is well worth the effort. Organizations can create a specialized career page to highlight the success of recent college graduate employees and use messaging tailored to engage that audience.

Graduate career pages should be optimized for search engines and contain relevant keywords so job seekers can easily find them. Links to the page should also be included in communications with prospective candidates.

Building and maintaining campus relationships:

Establishing strong relationships with universities is a key element to successful campus recruiting. When communicating with the career center’s team, focus on sharing what your organization can do for the university. Organizations should become active in different campus activities, even if those activities are not directly associated with recruiting. For example, organizations can identify student groups related to their industry and offer sponsorship programs for activities and events.


Key Takeaways

  • Organizations are turning to the next generation of professionals to fill roles vacated by retiring baby boomers.
  • To effectively recruit recent graduates, you should take a technology-focused approach.
  • Building a relationship with colleges and universities is important for building a campus talent pipeline.