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Candidate Experience: Why It Matters and 8 Ways How to Improve It

Kathleen Dongo

In the world of recruitment, some key factors influence the hiring process, such as the so-called “candidate experience”.

Let’s say a person applied to two companies…

In one, they received prompt communication, a transparent process, and respectful treatment, so they felt valued and engaged. In the other, there was no communication, an impersonal process, and they felt disregarded.

It’s very likely that top talent, who have many options for them in the job market, would withdraw their application or not accept the job due to bad candidate experience. Good candidate experience can make or break a hire – it fosters trust, and enthusiasm, and attracts top talent. A negative experience repels candidates and damages the employer brand. Prioritizing a candidate-centric approach gives companies a competitive edge in talent acquisition.

In this post, we’ll discuss ways to improve your company’s candidate experience!

What Is Candidate Experience?

Candidate experience is all about how a company makes candidates feel during the recruitment process.

Candidate experience includes all interactions between the company and the candidate, from the initial job posting to the hiring decision. The quality of the candidate’s experience can impact a company’s ability to attract and retain top talent.

Why Does Having a Great Candidate Experience Matter So Much?

A great candidate experience is a key part of recruiting because it builds your company’s reputation and how it stands out in the marketplace.

Candidates’ experience in the recruitment process will determine whether or not they apply for another position at your company, whether they will continue to be in your talent pool, and who knows, maybe in the future, they will be part of your company.

A good candidate experience will make candidates feel good about your company after experiencing how you treat them. A great candidate experience can motivate them to share their good feelings with others, helping to build or strengthen your company’s reputation. 

Otherwise, a bad candidate experience can have disastrous consequences in your hiring process or even worst for the company. If a candidate has a poor experience, they are more likely to decline your job offer, never apply again for your openings, and encourage others not to apply, thus ruining your hiring process.

8 Ways to Improve Candidate Experience

Let’s see the tips and tricks to boost a positive candidate experience from an RPO perspective:

1. Refine Your Job Description

When writing the job description, make sure it’s relevant to the position in question.

Don’t say “We need someone with experience in this field” if there isn’t any overlap between the two jobs; instead, focus on how their skillsets align with what you need from them here.

If certain qualification criteria could be considered deal breakers (for example: “you must have 5+ years of experience in marketing”), be sure they appear early on so they don’t catch people off guard when they get farther down into reading!

2. Be Transparent

It sounds simple but it is not always easy to execute it.

Setting expectations and outlining the hiring is very important to provide a positive candidate experience.

To do this, consider the following questions:

  • Have I clearly stated the steps of the application process?
  • How long will each step take?
  • Is there anyone you can ask about it?

A tip that never fails is to offer resources and advice to help candidates.

3. Enable a User-Friendly Application Process

The best advice is to keep the application process simple and easy to go through!

If you are improving your company website, just ask yourself, Is the website easy to use?

Is your job application too long? Is your application form complicated? Is it possible to apply from all devices?

Once you have questioned yourself, try the application process and evaluate it.

4. Respect Candidates’ Time and Availability

Many candidates choose to apply to various job interviews and therefore want the hiring process to be short and precise.

Most candidates spend time researching jobs, preparing their resumes, applying, taking tests, and interviewing.

It is essential to appreciate their time and not use it disrespectfully. So, the more time you take, the more competitive offers you will see disappear.

5. Communication Is Key

Most candidates get frustrated during the recruitment process when employers don’t respond, especially if they leave you on “view” for more than 48 hours.

So the best solution is to make sure you communicate with your candidates regularly and on time. 

6. Become a Master of Interviews

Make sure you give candidates your full attention in interviews, pay attention to the candidate’s profile, answer all their questions courteously and professionally, and above all, be punctual. 

Other helpful tips are maintaining eye contact with the candidate, taking notes during the interview or immediately after, thanking the candidates for their time, and telling them when you will contact them.

7. Give and Ask for Feedback

Provide personalized feedback delivered with sincerity and kindness.

Also, remember that recruitment is a two-way process, so ask your candidate for some input as well.

Their information can be invaluable in improving your candidate’s experience.

8. Maintain a Good Candidate Relationship

The candidate experience should not end once they are not hired, you should follow through and stay in touch if something comes up.

It’s best to keep in touch, especially with high-quality candidates who can significantly shorten recruiting and hiring cycles.

Last but not least, add them to your network on LinkedIn and your talent pool.


Create a positive candidate experience across all touch points in the hiring process by using consistent messaging and making it easy for candidates to apply online via job listings and career web pages.

These pages should explain why people should apply for this position with your organization – letting people know why they are special enough makes them feel good about themselves and helps build trust between yourself as an employer and potential hires throughout the recruiting process!

One final tip: If possible include social media links so applicants can easily share their interests; this will help increase applicant pool size exponentially over time once word gets out there’s something great going on here!

If you found this post awesome and want to be a part of our incredible team, join us and become a recruitment tactics wizard.

Kathleen Dongo

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