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Trick or Treat! Avoid Spooking a Candidate with These Tips

The jack o’ lanterns are lit, candle flames are flickering in the breeze and your candy stash is rea...

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Posted by Karen Turner, HR Manager on Oct 30, 2019, 11:21:02 AM

TRICK OR TREAT!The jack o’ lanterns are lit, candle flames are flickering in the breeze and your candy stash is ready by the door for distribution. It’s Halloween.

This is a time of year when we contemplate — and come face-to-face with — our fears. But maybe we should also consider what other people fear, especially the people we’re recruiting to join our workforce. Anything that might “spook” a candidate can leave them skeptical and unenthusiastic about joining your organization — and that’s not the type of energy you want from a new hire.

So what are some potential red flags for candidates, and what steps can you take to eliminate them? Step inside your candidates’ minds and learn their greatest fears — and how to overcome them.

Practice Consistent Communication

Sometimes the hiring process takes a little longer than you anticipated. When this happens it’s critical to stay in contact with your candidates. A lack of communication causes a candidate to worry that their application is no longer in the running and can come across as unprofessional and inconsiderate. You don’t want to lose top talent because they felt forgotten.

Luckily, it doesn’t take long to send candidates a brief email explaining why the process is held up. Your candidates will appreciate the consideration, and it reflects back positively on the organization. Silence on the job front is one of the biggest causes of anxiety for candidates, but it’s one that’s easily preventable through simple email or text message updates.

Be Transparent About the Job and Process

If recruiters and hiring managers aren’t forthcoming or it seems like they’re keeping job details secret, candidates will notice. And if they aren’t getting the answers they need, they aren’t going to stick around. Be transparent about all the details of job requirements, expectations and compensation before making an offer.

Surprises aren’t a good look for any future employer. When it comes to the process, establish expectations as early as possible. If your organization conducts group interviews with members of the C-suite, for example, let candidates know so they aren’t rattled once they arrive. It’s a simple act of courtesy, but it makes the candidate feel like you’re on their side.

Convey Culture and Put Empathy First

Being transparent extends to company culture. After all, potential hires are anticipating spending the larger part of their week immersed in this environment. Not knowing what the company culture is like can lead to concern and anxiety. Your recruiting and hiring processes should be a reflection of your organizational culture. If your culture is laid back, for example, you might take a more casual approach to interviews.

Additionally, candidates are probably nervous about the entire process, so try to make them feel welcome and comfortable at each stage. This can be as simple as lighting a candle or playing light music to provide a soothing ambiance. It’s important to always consider the process from the candidate’s perspective. Crafting the experience from this design-thinking perspective will help you eliminate candidates’ nagging fears and prevent potential hires from “ghosting” you, long after Halloween passes.

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