Recruiters - What Do Your Applicants Want From You?

  • february 23,2015
  • Dave Rigby
  • Recruiter News, Tips And Advice

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For all recruiters, the focus is usually on filling the job with a quality candidate, keep the hiring manager happy, and making sure they want to use your services again (whether you're an agency or an internal recruiter). 

But what about the Candidates? 

Running a job board, we are happy to hear personally from candidates for any reason at all. We love to talk, but we also love to listen, and respond to the issues candidates raise with us. Here's what we regularly hear, and how we think recruiters should deal with the issues candidates are raising:

1. Candidates want to know that the jobs they apply for really exist! There is a great deal of scepticism about whether jobs listed online are genuine jobs, or they are simple ways of gathering CVs to develop a new / larger database. This can come in part from the way adverts are written, but also the fact that some key details are omitted from adverts, e.g. location / salary / prospects. Candidates appear to be developing a negative image of some recruitment agencies, and we think there are lots of positive steps agencies can take to turn this around. 

2. Communication! The main issue we hear about is a total lack of communication once a CV has been submitted.  Technologies nowadays, e.g. application tracking systems or even Mailchimp, give recruiters so many easy ways to let candidates know they've received an application or indeed have declined their application.  To leave someone waiting for feedback or even a simple 'no' response simply isn't ideal. It puts people off the online application process, and can damage your own company reputation. 

3. Feedback! It's amazing to hear that even after an interview, candidates wait for feedback. And wait. And wait. And then have to phone the recruiter for a response! This sort of behaviour from professional recruiters is just poor, and really can damage the overall reputation of agencies and recruiters in general.  There's just no need for silence. 

4. Honesty. Now this is the time-consuming bit: even if you've kept your applicants posted and told them it's a 'no' either from a CV or interview, have you been able to explain why? We accept that for many recruiters, especially those who see hundreds of applications coming through, that detailed feedback is an impossibility, unless you hire a new team to handle it! However, for those where candidates have been unsuccessful after interview, feedback is vital - whether in writing or over the phone, let the candidate know why they didn't get the job. You'll improve your reputation by doing this, and help them improve their own prospects!