Does Your Candidate Experience Convey... Rock-Stars Wanted?

Let’s be frank, honest and upfront here…. the old-school method of recruiting Rock-Star talent, you’ve used FOREVER is dead. And while I will be the first to admit I love 90’s hair bands, the Rock-Stars we are looking for today don’t look like that anymore. And nor do they want to follow the same old recruitment process.

Gone are the days where candidates are in the plethora and the employers held all the cards. In comes the days of instant gratification, where candidates hold the best hand and have lots of employment options.  And to be perfectly honest, recruiting talent in general the old-school way is frustrating the hel* out of the people you are trying to hire. Companies please realize, we are in a period of the lowest unemployment rates in US history and for the sake of argument, EVERYONE is employed.

You are however, not alone in your archaic recruitment methods, according to Business Insider, most companies are NOT setting themselves apart with their hiring process, that’s for sure.

But did you know, people born between 1980 and 2000 — are getting frustrated by the old system, according to the BBC.

A survey by KPMG found more than a third of the 400 respondents said they were annoyed by the length of the application process. Even worse, more than half said they hated not getting any feedback if they did not get the job.

So how long is your application process? Does every candidate get a response when they are declined for the job and are suggestions offered to help them improve their game?

When was the last time you went through your recruiting process, within your organization, as  a candidate? Have you taken the candidates journey through the application process, the interview gauntlet, and the feedback loop?

The answer is most likely NO!! Most hiring managers cannot be bothered with that and virtually ZERO Senior Executives have ever gone through this painful exercise.

So here is the truth…. as it stands today, in 2019 not 1990…if your application process requires a candidate to upload their resume and then re-enter all the same information, you have just failed the first step in the process. You lose about 50%, if not more of the candidates interested in your position with this one mis-step alone.  

However, if your application process passes muster but your interview process lasts longer than 2 weeks from start to finish, you just failed again.

If you are serious about hiring Rock-Star talent your interview process should last no more than 2 weeks. Ten days is ideal.  

Too many companies are stuck in their old process where a candidate has to go through 2 phone interview, then take a personality test, then wait a week so schedules can be coordinated, then after the interview it takes a week to get feedback from all of the stakeholders, then the offer, if there is one, takes another 3 days to generate, then there is the back and forth salary negotiation, then if the offer is accepted and the candidate is employed they need to put in their 2 weeks notice.  

And during this entire time you are going through your process, guess what? That candidate is also interviewing with other top-notch companies… maybe a company who has their hiring process in order and doesn’t take 3 months to make a decision.  Do you think that candidate is still looking at your organization as an option?  Probably not!  And if they are, you have to ask yourself if they truly are the Rock-Star you believed them to be.

Then come the counteroffer attempts. Uff.

Now do you see why I call it this process the gauntlet?

But there is a better way and let me show you.

Pro Tip 1: If you application process takes more than someone being able to attach his or her resume or LinkedIn profile with his or her name phone number and email address you application process is killing you.

I can hear you now…..”Carrie, you don’t know what he heck you are talking about we get a ton of candidate flow from our job ads.” If that’s what you are thinking, please reach out to us now because candidate flow doesn’t mean a thing.

Would you rather have 150 mediocre candidates who are unemployed or change jobs every 8-16 months or do you want 4 candidates who are spot on, are employed, have a killer job history, and see something in your opportunity that makes them take notice? 

Don’t bother answering; I already know what your answer is. The moral of the story is, make the first step in your process as easy as first name, last name, email, phone number, attach your resume.

Pro Tip 2: Make it a point to review and respond to every resume with in 48-72 hours. And, if they are not a fit, please tell them immediately. Don’t leave people hanging.   

Pro Tip 3: If your candidate is local, skip the phone interview and bring them in right away, within 72 hours. If they are a Rock-Star, they will have options and you need to strike while the iron is HOT. When you do this make sure all of the stakeholders participate in the interview so there is no need for a follow up interview.

Pro Tip 4: Immediately after the interview ends have a meeting to discuss the interview and review the scorecard each stakeholder filled out for that candidate.

You did use a score carding system for your interview, didn’t you?  If you are asking yourself…score card, what’s this?  Be sure to give us a call today! 

If the candidate will not move forward, you should send out an email right away letting them know.

Pro Tip 5: If a second in-house interview is needed….which by the way, I think is a bad idea because there is no reason you couldn’t have accomplished everything on the first interview, but I digress.

However, if a second interview is necessary, this should be scheduled ASAP, preferably the same week so all of the information on both sides remains fresh.

Pro Tip 6: If you will be making an offer, I hope you have been pre-closing the candidate the whole way through and both sides have been transparent on the compensation as to eliminate any back and forth during this stage.

It is always a best practice to let the candidate know you will be making your best offer with your first offer in an effort to streamline the process and eliminate any of the uncomfortable back and forth negotiation.

Always, Always, Always come in strong with your best offer right out of the gate. If you are making them an offer they must be an Rock-Star, right? So roll out a Rock-Star offer.

Don’t play games….

Pro Tip 7: Require an answer on your offer within 72 hours.

Pro Tip 8: As soon as the signed offer is received, the process should be handed over to the person who will be managing this person. Do not leave the onboarding process to anyone else other than the hiring manager.

The day the signed offer is received the hiring manager should call the candidate and welcome them to the team, answer any questions and tell them what their first 90 days will look like. You might even want to share some project details with them.

But it doesn’t stop there. Remember, if this person is a Rock-Star they will be faced with a counter-offer. It is your job to bring them into your environment and create a bond so tight, that no counteroffer can entice them to stay.

We recommend to our clients, that within the first week after signing the offer, the hiring manager should take the candidate and their spouse to a nice dinner or invite the candidates to lunch with a couple of key people from the team. This again, tightens the new bond.

All in all if your candidate experience is flawless and easy, you have a much higher chance of landing the convened Rock-Stars, but if you falter on any of these steps you risk never seeing a Rock-Star enter your process or even worse, they accept a counteroffer at the 11th hour.

Neither one of those scenarios is ideal so it is critical that you know what the application, interview, follow up, offer, and onboarding process looks like so you can optimize any flaws.

If you bypass this exercise you run the risk of a potential mis-hire or just never seeing a Rock-Star enter your process. Either way, both can have a negative effect on your leadership career.

And as always if you need any help with hiring a Rock-Star, don’t hesitate to reach out. through the contact, us page.

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Does Your Candidate Experience Convey… Rock-Stars Wanted?