What Makes a Great Candidate Experience and How to Deliver It

Think about the typical sales hiring process and candidate experience for a minute. In every case, there should be two goals in mind: the company (you) wants to hire the right person for the job, and the candidate (the top performer on the other side of the desk from you) wants to land the right job for them. That seems pretty fair, right? Everyone wins!

Unfortunately, that’s not usually how it plays out. Most hiring processes are about what that company is getting out of the deal.

Are we making the right hiring decision for us? How quickly can we bring someone on board?

Will this person stay for the long term? How much will this hire cost us?

As you can see, there’s not much thought being given to what it felt like to be a candidate going through the process. And that can come back to bite many companies who aren’t taking a hard look at how up to date their hiring processes are.

What Is the Candidate Experience, and Why Does It Matter?

The candidate experience refers to what it feels like to be an individual going through the hiring process. This includes everything from how well information about the job and the company was communicated to what questions the company asked. It also includes factors such as how much time the company spent getting to know the candidate, how complicated the application process was, and whether or not the candidate felt like their time was well-spent or wasted.

All of this matters because things have shifted pretty radically over the last decade or so, especially as millennials have become the dominant generation in today’s workforce. But it goes beyond that, too. There’s also a strong demand for talent. As a result, highly skilled applicants who know their skills are needed have higher expectations on their end.

Ten years ago, the power dynamic was on the company’s side. Now, it’s more balanced as employees hold their ground.

  • They don’t want their time wasted.
  • They don’t want to be treated like they are machine parts.
  • They’ve been through both bad and good experiences already.
  • They know other companies are competing for talent.
  • They know they have a right to interview the company, too.

If they don’t like the hiring process, they likely won’t accept the job. And if they do take the job because they’re desperate for a paycheck, they will likely look at you as a short-term fix as they keep looking for another company to jump ship to.

Pay Attention to the Candidate Experience!

Here are a few time-tested ways to improve the candidate experience:

  1. Make sure you’re collecting the right information at each stage of the hiring process.
  2. Don’t waste their time with unnecessary forms.
  3. Go out of your way to express interest in each candidate.
  4. Rethink time-consuming employment tests that are too repetitive and aren’t very connected to the job that you’re hiring them to do.
  5. Be responsive. There’s nothing worse than feeling like your application fell into a black hole.
  6. Provide feedback so that they understand where you are in the process.

Predictive Simulations Are Where It’s at!

At Sciolytix, we’ve always fancied ourselves as innovators and pioneers when it comes to providing simulations to train your existing salesforce. But what if we told you, we could take that same simulation concept and more accurately predict future performance? Would you jump on it? We think you will. And we bet the candidate experience would improve, too!

  • Candidates will feel like you really “get it.”
  • You’re not wasting their time.
  • They know you’re using something cutting-edge and relevant.
  • You’re making hiring decisions based on actual job performance.

Predictive simulations are much different from classic personality assessments because they are relevant to the job the candidate is applying for, they are enjoyable, and they can actually predict performance and quota attainment for your prospective sales hires.

If you’d like to learn more, please listen to our Disruptors & Innovators podcast. We are revolutionizing the way organizations hire, onboard, and develop talent. Predictive simulations are the latest enhancement we’re adding to that arsenal of products. And we guarantee you won’t be disappointed.


Author: David Solot

David Solot, Ph.D., is Chief Science Officer & Senior Vice President of Product Management at Sciolytix.