What is Candidate Engagement?

Definition and examples of Candidate Engagement
By Abhishek Kathpal Updated 10 August, 2022

Candidate engagement is a process through which an organization interacts with potential employees as part of the recruitment process. The goal of candidate engagement is to create a positive experience for candidates so they will be more likely to accept a job offer if one is made. Organizations can achieve this by providing candidates with information, feedback, and resources throughout the recruitment process.

What is Candidate Engagement

Candidate Engagement meaning and definition

Candidate engagement is continuously keeping in touch with a pool of candidates through emails, texts, or other means throughout the recruitment process. Unfortunately, many recruiters overlook this process, resulting in a bad experience for job seekers and a loss of skilled prospects to fill skill gaps. Due to the competitive nature of the labor force, establishing a good relationship with candidates is a strategic process to ensure they remain interested in the company. Knowing how detrimental the high candidate dropout rate is, recruiters try their best to keep hold of prospective candidates for present and future roles. Candidates spend an average of 10 days in the recruitment process as against 24 days time to hire. Engaging them keeps them in the hiring process longer.

Why Is Candidate Engagement Important?

The productivity of new employees depends largely on their experience in the hiring process. Some new employees may feel less motivated because of their first impression of the company, reducing productivity. However, their feeling around the workplace is positive when there is a good relationship with the company before being hired.

Every year, companies lose funds outsourcing new workers and may not get the right profile for vacant roles. When a company establishes a good relationship with prospective candidates, it keeps them interested. Conversely, a lousy engagement can make prospects lose interest in the job and pursue other opportunities.

What Are the Benefits of Candidate Engagement?

Knowing a prospective candidate’s skills, strengths, weaknesses, and cultural fit is the first step to recruiting the right hands for the job. Productivity of the workforce is dampened when recruiters fail to assess applicants before extending an offer properly. When recruiters interact frequently with candidates during hiring, they can make more informed decisions. Retaining applicants in the candidate pool ensures companies don’t lose skilled personnel to the competition, which results in a loss of market share. Furthermore, establishing a good relationship with potential employees means they retain an interest in the company for future opportunities.

Candidate engagement benefits the candidates because they learn more about the company and network with potential colleagues. In addition, when potential employees are familiar with the company, they become satisfied and enjoy a good working environment, resulting in a low turnover rate and high customer retention.

How to Improve Candidate Engagement

First, ensuring the company’s website is easy to navigate is essential as people generally dislike disorganized websites that load slowly. Also, responding to candidates swiftly and professionally improves their experience and leaves a positive impression.

To give candidates a good experience in the hiring process, companies should keep them informed on their application progress and follow up after interviews and rejections. Sending rejected candidates company resources via email, inviting them to company events, and thanking them for choosing your company strengthens the connection between them and the company.

Measuring Candidate Engagement

To improve productivity, companies make data-driven decisions rather than instincts. Measuring how much candidates are engaged empowers recruiters with data to fuel their decision-making. Firstly, recording how long candidates spend on the company's website is a good way to measure their interest in the company. Metrics like browsing speed and time spent on web pages are important in measuring engagement. In addition, by monitoring engagement on the company's social media platforms, recruiters have an insight into the inclination of a candidate towards the company. Candidates' job application rate indicates how interested they are in your company. If they are not applying for many jobs, they are likely interested in yours.

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to how to engage candidates throughout the recruitment process. The most effective approach will vary depending on the company, the position being filled, and the candidate pool. However, a few key things companies can do to improve candidate engagement include developing clear and concise job descriptions, providing timely and accurate feedback to candidates, and creating a positive candidate experience.

Candidate Experience vs Candidate Engagement

Candidate experience and candidate engagement are major metrics of successful recruitment. While candidate engagement is the process of managing the company-candidate relationship, candidate experience is the emotion applicants feel during the entire recruitment exercise. Positive experience in the hiring process further enhances the applicant's connection with the company.

To create a positive experience, companies must personalize interactions with candidates. Since most of the recruiting messages applicants receive are automated, companies can stand out by personalizing communications and telling them why they are reaching out. Lastly, asking for feedback shows a company cares about their candidates' opinions, making them feel valued and enhancing their experience.

About the Author

Abhishek Kathpal

Abhi is the co-founder at Longlist.io. Funded by US based OnDeck, Longlist is currently enabling 50+ businesses to increase their candidate and client reach outs, automating the workflow across stages.

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