“Once you start down the dark path, forever will it dominate your destiny, consume you it will.” – Yoda
Even the best Jedi Knights can be lured in by the Dark Side. The Dark Side of recruiting is likewise seductive, with even the strongest of hiring managers and sourcers slipping into the habit of using poor hiring techniques, which can often be unknowingly destructive.
It’s clear evidence that the Dark Side is still strong. The consequences? Well, the same survey reported that those who have poor experience are less likely to apply to work for the company again, are more likely to discourage others from applying, and are even less likely to purchase from the company.
So in honor of Star Wars Day, 2016, here are 5 mistakes you must avoid if you want to stay clear of the Dark Side and all of its evil.
Avoid These Mistakes, You Must
1) Respect a Candidate’s Time
Han Solo telling Luke, “Great, kid! Don’t get cocky,” applies here. More bluntly: Be considerate. The job seeking process is stressful for even the most talented and sought-after candidates. Leaving them in the dark and not keeping them up to date on the status of their application is a sure way to make sure they don’t accept your offer. Keeping your candidates in the loop is key, and there are even tools that make it easy to do this well. For example, MightyRecruiter allows recruiters to send candidates automated notifications about the status of their resume, and it lets recruiters send automated thank you notes when a candidate applies for a job—both of which can go a long way to making every candidate feel appreciated.
2) Nail Your First Impression
Make your job description clear, informative, and enticing. Send an email alert to a candidate when you’ve received the application, and make sure your open job opportunities are easy to find on your website. Keep your communications with a candidate clear and direct; this isn’t a chance to show off your SAT words or demonstrate your knowledge of iambic pentameter. Your relationship with a candidate isn’t like Han and Leia – Han had a few hours of screen time to change her first impression of him, a luxury a recruiter will never have.
3) Always Inform Candidates When They’ve Been Passed Over
It can be easy to convince yourself that notifying passed-over candidates is a waste of time. But this is a big mistake – and one that’s easy to avoid. This goes back to no.1 – be considerate. Hiring is business, it’s not personal, but when a candidate who researched the company for weeks and did practice interviews in the mirror is completely ignored the second they are passed over, it starts to feel personal. A candidate who isn’t a fit now might be a fit later, and a simple email letting them know someone else got the job is an easy and effective way to keep the relationship positive.
4) Be Transparent
You’re recruiting for a company, not building the Death Star, so why not let a candidate know what the hiring process looks like? Simple things like letting candidates know how long the job will be open, how many rounds of interviews will take place, and what the ideal start date is are quick ways to make sure your candidates feel informed and in the loop.
5) Don’t Underestimate the Details
You can avoid all the mistakes above and still deliver a poor candidate experience. How? By ignoring the details. Keep notes on the candidates you’ve spoken to so you don’t have to spend 5 minutes at the beginning of every call asking questions you’ve already asked, getting information you should already know. This reflects poorly on the quality of your company as a whole and can ultimately shift a high-quality candidate’s perception of your organization. Every detail matters.
Don’t try and avoid these mistakes – just avoid them. As Yoda said, “Do, or do not. There is no try.” When it comes down to it, the common theme here is communication. Top employers present clear, persuasive messages in their job postings, manage candidate expectations with timely follow-ups, and clearly communicate their hiring decisions.