Technology has changed our consumer expectations tremendously: We expect both lightning-fast results and ease of use, all on our own timeline. And that’s true whether we’re buying shoes online or applying for a job.
But the candidate experience is lagging far behind the customer experience. Too many organizations are using outdated processes for their talent acquisition that simply don’t account for the myriad ways our lives have changed in the past 10 years. It used to take a minute to load an image on a webpage, but now we can watch all of “Game of Thrones” on a phone.
When dealing with candidates, your goal is to create an experience that’s easy. Marketers call it “frictionless,” meaning any moments of frustration are eliminated. Here are some ways you can refine your candidate experience to make it more enjoyable and frictionless.
Simplify Your Process
Let’s imagine you’re looking for a job. You search online and find a position you know will be a great fit. You’re excited. This is the job for you. But then you hit “Apply” and everything screeches to a halt.
You’re confronted with a prompt to set up an account. You come up with a password. Then you have to confirm your email address. Fine. But after these time-consuming steps, now it’s time to fill out a 10-page application! Maybe this job isn’t the best fit after all.
This sad story is the reality for a lot of talent acquisition systems. They require too much upfront work, particularly from candidates just entering the funnel. That’s a lot more friction than you want.
Remember what the beginning of your process is for: All you need to do is attract potential candidates and collect some preliminary information to make a decision on whether they’re worth pursuing. This means you shouldn’t worry about every little detail yet. Ask for contact information and a resume — that’s it.
Once you receive that resume, you can follow up for more information. But be sure that you’re asking questions tailored toward the position. You wouldn’t ask a potential administrative assistant about their commercial driving licenses, and you wouldn’t ask a potential truck driver how they are with Excel. Targeting your questions to the candidate will save time for both you and them, and will help you fill open positions faster.
Think Mobile First
When we think about applying for jobs, a lot of time we picture a candidate sitting at a computer looking at job listings. But more and more people are using a mobile device to access the Internet. Many don’t even own a computer.
That means you need to ensure that your application interface looks as good on the smallest screen as it does on the biggest one — and that it works seamlessly on any device. It should only take a few taps to apply for a job.
You should also ask candidates how they prefer to communicate. Is it email? Text? Phone calls? However you communicate, make sure you’re meeting the candidate where they are.
Rethinking your candidate experience to be fast, simple and frictionless requires a new perspective. In this competitive hiring landscape, your goal is to make your candidates feel empowered, understood and valued. That requires totally upending the status quo of job applications.
See more articles from Manoj on TalentTalk or connect @TalentTechie on Twitter.