Employee loyalty starts before a candidate even begins the recruitment process. Here’s how to win them over from the very beginning.

In order to have a great company, you need to have great people. And building a team of great people starts at the very beginning of the hiring journey, from the moment you identify an opening. Here’s how to make a great candidate experience, starting from the beginning. 

Building a team of great people starts at the very beginning of the hiring journey.

How to Build Employee Loyalty by Making a Great Candidate Experience

Part 1: Pre-Interview

  1. Write a great job posting. Every job posting should include an overview of the company, a summary of the job position, and an overview of the ideal candidate. Include the responsibilities and requirements, and make sure the posting is clear and easy to read. A great job posting includes all these fundamentals, but also reflects your company’s mission and values, and describes the personality characteristics that make a candidate a good fit for your team. Include information like career trajectory and growth potential, so candidates can envision this job as part of their future. 
  2. Streamline the application process. The hiring journey is a reflection of your organization. Does your organization require candidates to create a username and password and authenticate an account before they can even reply to your listing? Does your online application process require candidates to upload their CV, and then manually fill out a form with all the information on their CV? Evaluate your systems and automation to ensure that it’s not just easy for your staff, but easy for applicants as well. Test your system by applying for a job yourself, and see how the process can be improved. 
  3. Respond promptly to every application. Surveys show that the most frustrating part of job-seeking is that applicants spend a lot of time building a CV, writing a cover letter, filling out online forms, and undergoing a lot of time-consuming processes, only to never hear anything from the company they applied for. Even if all you can manage is a well-crafted auto-responder, it’s important to acknowledge the time and energy that candidates have invested in your processes and their hiring journey.

Part 2: The Interview Process

  1. Send a detailed calendar invite. Calendar invites eliminate any confusion about time zones. Include your meeting link and/or all the details about when and where the interview will be held. Include any necessary instructions for visitors to your office, including parking, reception, etc. Let the candidate know who they will be interviewing with, and what form the interview will take. Give them all the information they need to be successful, and make yourself available to answer any other pre-interview questions they may have. 
  2. Be polite and prepared at the interview. Everyone present in the interview should already be familiar with the position and the candidate’s CV. They should have prepared relevant questions, and give the candidate their full attention. Starting late, being disorganized, and being unprepared is disrespectful of the candidate’s time, and indicates unprofessionalism and a disorganized workplace. 
  3. Follow up after the interview. After the interview, in person and in writing, thank the candidate for their time. Tell them what your next steps will be, and when they can expect to hear back from you. 
  4. Always follow through. A full 60% of candidates report going to an interview and never hearing anything from the company. Your hiring process should be transparent and trustworthy – if you say you’ll make a hiring decision within a week, make the decision and let them know. If you want a second interview, reach out promptly and schedule it. 

Part 3: Making the Hiring Decision

  1. Reject candidates respectfully. If you choose not to move forward with a candidate, it’s important to treat them with care and respect. Be clear and concise about your decision, and offer feedback if they want it. If the candidate requests feedback, make sure it is constructive and professional. A candidate who is rejected from a job, but gets constructive feedback, is four times more likely to consider future opportunities with that company. 
  2. Request feedback of your own. Requesting honest, constructive feedback from candidates is the best way to improve your processes. It also shows openness and transparency, and a willingness to learn and collaborate that make your company stand out from others. 
  3. Stay in contact. If a candidate is promising, but not the right fit for this specific role, tell them that you’ll keep them in mind for other positions. And then follow through with that commitment, using reminders, tags, or other systems to bring them to mind when the time is right. 

As you can tell, building a great hiring journey that is the foundation of happy, loyal employees isn’t hard. All you have to do is remember to treat every candidate as a person, every step of the way. At grapefrute, we always ensure that our efficient automated systems are backed by human warmth and intelligence, so candidates get the best of both worlds, and start off on the right foot. Contact us for more information about how to build great teams.