Much of hiring is focused on what you need as a company. It’s about finding the talent that matches your company culture, the production needed at the position, and more. From the interview questions to the recruitment process, the focus is mostly on what you can do to make sure you’re identifying the right talent.
But it’s important not to lose track of the candidate experience as well, and one of the major challenges that many companies are facing is candidate dropout. This is when a good candidate – possible the candidate you planned to hire – decides to withdraw their name from contention or turns down the job in some way.
The Problem of Candidate Dropout
For many companies, candidate dropout is a real problem. Indeed, candidate dropout is, itself, a warning sign that something may be wrong with your hiring process. Usually, when someone receives an interview for a job they are happy, and stay in contention until the moment they are either hired, or told that the company is going to go a different direction.
If someone is turning down interviews, or has decided they are no longer interested in the position in some way, it may mean:
- You’re losing out on great applicants.
- You’re doing something wrong that is affecting their interest.
- Your company may have some type of negative PR, etc.
Perhaps the greatest issue is the first one. The most likely candidates to drop out of contention are those that feel they can get a job elsewhere, and often that implies that they know they are good candidates for other positions.
How to Reduce Candidate Dropout
Luckily, there are many different techniques, strategies, and tips that you can use to reduce candidate dropout. If dropout has become a problem in your hiring process, consider the following tips:
- Make Yourself Available at Better Times – Not all dropout is due to something your company did or didn’t do. Sometimes it is caused by simply not being able to take time off for the interview. One strategy to consider is to make yourself available at times more convenient to the applicant, like after work. This helps ensure that you can hire those that are employed at demanding jobs.
- Communicate With Them Often – Dropout sometimes occurs as a result of a lack of communication. Many companies spend weeks at a time failing to communicate whether or not the person got the job (or even the next interview). Frequent updates go a long way towards ensuring that the candidate retains their interest.
- Respect Their Time – Similar to making yourself available, you should also make sure you’re respecting their time. That means trying to bunch interviews together, rather than forcing the individual to travel for 3, 4, or 5 interviews. It means knowing that they are taking time off work, and not dilly-dallying around and wasting their valuable sick days. Respect the time of each candidate you call.
- Shorten Your Hiring Time – The longer it takes for you to make a decision, the more likely the candidate is going to move on. Try to hire quickly and efficiently to keep interest level in the position high, and reduce the risk of the applicants finding other positions they get more excited about.
- Know What the Employee Sees About You Online – If you have negative reviews of your workplace, or any PR that may turn people off from working for you, the applicant is going to see it. Be aware of this feedback and address it in some way, because everyone that is applying for your job will do their research.
- Give Them Reasons to Work With You – We discuss this a lot here at Recruit Shop, but as a company, it’s important to make sure you’re offering something that other companies are not offering. They should have a desire to work for you, because you represent something more than just a salary. Try integrating strategies into your business that will turn on possible talent.
- Show Them How You Match Them – Sometimes all you need to do is make sure they recognise how well you fit their needs. Consider what you have learned about them through the interview process and show them that you’re the employer best suited both for their abilities and their personality.
- Make the Interviews Engaging – When an interview is too rigid and formal, it can be an intimidating and discomforting experience for the applicant. Make the interviews more engaging. You can do this by having them take place at a coffee shop, telling them more about the great parts of your workplace, etc.
- Offer Jobs Fast – If you think you may hire them, don’t waste any time letting them know. One of the greatest mistakes companies make is taking too much time. The applicant is looking for an answer, because they need to move on with their needs as well. Companies that take too long to offer the job tend to cause applicants to look for better work.
Each of these strategies has the potential to reduce candidate dropout, which should be a priority for all companies. The more likely someone is to withdraw their name, the more you’re losing out on potentially great contributors.