5 Tips to Craft the Perfect Candidate Pitch

5 Tips to Craft the Perfect Candidate Pitch

Finding the right person to fill an open role with your company can be a challenge. But even when you locate them, you might need to sell them on the organization. The latest generation of workers wants to feel like the company they work for aligns with their values and that they can make an impact.

So, that means you always have to be ready to sell your company and show how it benefits society as a whole. This concept can help you generate more interest in open positions and attract candidates who really care about the work they do. Explore our five tips to craft a candidate pitch that appeals to all who hear it.

What is a Candidate Pitch?

A candidate pitch, also known as a recruitment pitch, is a clear and succinct statement offered to a prospective new hire to inform them of the position and company. The goal of this pitch is to capture their interest. It should also encourage them to submit an application or consider an offer. By crafting and using a recruitment pitch regularly, your team can emphasize the value of the company and what it contributes.

Ways to Improve Your Candidate Pitch

As you consider how to pitch the company and open roles to a potential candidate, you can incorporate these five tips.

Tell a story

People respond more effectively to stories, as the information presented in this way is more memorable and relatable. As you craft your recruitment pitch, think about the narrative you could weave around the start of the business and how it has reached the point it is at today.

You might also think about incorporating elements of existing team members’ stories. For example, if you have an employee who has moved up from a lower level to a higher one, tell that person’s story. Demonstrate the opportunities for professional growth and development and investment in each individual’s potential and skillset.

Highlight unique selling points (USPs)

Every business has its own unique selling points. Your candidate pitch should emphasize these clearly. Describe what sets your company apart and what members of the workforce get to experience as part of the organization. You could also highlight some of the elements of your business that align with candidate values. Examples include any investments into inclusion, environmental sustainability or opportunities to advance.

Take advantage of resources

In today’s tech-heavy world, it’s worth taking advantage of all available resources. Artificial intelligence (AI) platforms are ideal for creating first drafts of content, including a pitch to sell potential candidates on open roles within your business. Input the information you have and see what you get. It’s easy to make adjustments where needed, and you’ll likely save some time on the first go-around.

Customize the content to your audience

As you craft a candidate pitch, consider the people who might apply for open roles. What do these individuals have in common with one another? Do they share certain skills or experience? Customize your pitch to what those people might be interested in hearing about the company.

Include a call to action

Make sure candidates know what the next steps are in the process with a clear call to action at the end of the pitch. If you’re discussing open roles, provide information about where to find additional details and how to submit an application.

Are you looking for additional resources to streamline your hiring efforts? ApplicantStack is your go-to, offering applicant tracking and candidate management tools that keep everyone on the same page. Whether you’re building a new time, backfilling an open role, or hiring regularly, you can count on this solution to make it easier to find and bring on talent. Give it a try (it’s free)!

6 Benefits of Stronger Recruiting Efforts

6 Benefits of Stronger Recruiting Efforts

As a business owner, striving to build a reliable team that you can count on to get the job done is paramount to hiring success. Finding high-quality, loyal talent can be a very tough yet necessary challenge to endure in today’s job market. Employee turnover is an increasingly extensive problem across many industries and it’s costing companies a non-negligible amount of money.

According to Investopedia, companies spent over $92 billion on training in 2021. This statistic is already daunting — and it doesn’t even include integration expenditures. That’s why taking the time to develop an effective recruiting process — one that’s active and targeted — is essential if you want to attract an ideal candidate for an open role.

Developing a robust and effective hiring process not only helps you better identify excellent potential employees who are motivated to grow with your company, but it also saves you time and money. Here’s how.

The Basics: What Is Recruitment?

Recruitment is a crucial business strategy that involves identifying a need for additional staff, appealing to prospects, attracting candidates and hiring the right person for a job. The system of recruiting is often a team effort where all members should maintain a holistic overview of the entire hiring process.

To streamline and optimize the entire workflow, recruiters must have a comprehensive understanding of the job description at hand. They need to be able to look for people with skills and qualities that align with the role. However, they must also be very careful about who they hire. Making snap decisions without doing due diligence — and hiring the wrong people — can quickly affect a company’s reputation and success as a business.

With that in mind, why else is the recruitment process so important?

Why Is Recruitment Important?

  • Quality assurance: Oftentimes, the quality of a business as a whole is determined by the quality of its employees. The recruitment process helps ensure that prospective candidates are fully qualified for the open role and hold all the desirable certifications and characteristics necessary to meet and exceed expectations.
  • Value alignment: For most organizations, it’s important to maintain the workplace culture they’ve built. Throughout the hiring process, an HR professional is able to determine whether or not candidates hold the same values that the company highlights as essential to their work environment, so as to increase that value through prospective employees who share similar beliefs.
  • Creates a better candidate experience: Facilitating a positive interview experience helps to attract and hold the attention of candidates you may wish to hire. Without a meaningful hiring experience that puts emphasis on candidate engagement, qualified job seekers may lose interest in working with your organization altogether. This can have a ripple effect if they then choose to share their experience with other prospects in your industry, who may not even give you a shot afterward.
  • Building for a brighter future: Having a qualified team made of employees who are a good culture fit, align with your organization’s values and are dedicated to their roles boosts productivity and helps the company’s annual growth goals.

6 Overwhelming Benefits of an Excellent Recruiting Program

Having a coveted recruitment process isn’t just for show. Organizations stand to experience myriad benefits when they take the time to truly understand candidates’ needs. Developing a recruiting process that is conscious of prospects’ time, communicative, responsive and straightforward is an easy win for the candidates and your company.

We’ve outlined some of the top benefits of investing in your recruiting efforts.

1. Access to Top Talent

Requirement processes that are enjoyable and informative can help pique the interest of top talent in your industry. Drawn-out, unoptimized workflows may unintentionally leave qualified candidates behind or scare them away before they have a chance to show you what they’re made of.

2. Enhanced Company Culture

An engaging recruitment process can better assess a candidate’s skills and qualifications as well as their cultural fit within the organization. The better a job seeker aligns with company culture and values, the easier it is to foster a harmonious and productive work environment.

3. Higher Retention Rates

Higher retention rates can be attributed to many elements of a company, such as their willingness or aptitude to give recognition to their employees. But before a candidate is brought on board, those who have a clear understanding of a company’s culture are more likely to stick around.

4. Reduced Time-to-Hire

Engaging in recruitment processes tends to be more efficient. They can help streamline the hiring process, reduce the time it takes to fill open positions and ensure that the right candidates are selected more quickly.

5. Positive Employer Brand

A positive and engaging recruitment experience can significantly improve your company’s reputation as an employer. Candidates who have a good experience, even if they don’t get the job, will see you as a positive brand entity. This means that they may be more likely to speak positively about your organization both online and offline.

6. Long-Term Growth and Sustainability

Companies that focus on creating an engaging recruitment process are more likely to continuously evaluate and refine their hiring strategies. This commitment to improvement can lead to a stronger, more competitive organization in the long run.

How To Improve Your Recruitment Strategy

There are a few integral steps to building a successful recruitment strategy. They involve points for everything from identifying your needs to taking action and everything in between.

  1. Identify gaps. Are there aspects of your recruitment process that seem time-worn or ineffective? To find gaps, it’s helpful to make note of your current workflow, what’s working well and elements that could use updating.
  2. Review your mission statement. What are your company values and long-term goals? Do they align with the potential hires that you’re after? Evaluate these aspects of your brand identity and update them as necessary to achieve complete alignment with prospects.
  3. Understand the 5 W’s (and 1 H) of your strategy:
    1. Who is the candidate? (The title of the position).
    2. What requirements does the job seeker need to be successful?
    3. When are your recruiting efforts scheduled to start and end?
    4. Where will the job posting be listed?
    5. Why are you looking for additional staff?
    6. How will the recruiting process unfold?
  4. Employ software solutions. Software solutions, like ApplicantStack, streamline your recruitment processes and make it easier to formulate an effective hiring strategy. Features like intuitive data storage, comprehensive dashboards, clear workflows and checklists help you track and communicate with candidates faster and easier.

Enhance Your Recruitment with ApplicantStack

ApplicantStack is an all-in-one platform that includes features for creating, posting and managing job listings. Using our platform, recruiters can:

  • Post open roles to job boards and social media sites quickly and easily.
  • Qualify candidate scoring with prescreen and knock-out questions.
  • Schedule interviews and provide standardized feedback so you can hire candidates as a team.
  • Communicate with applicants more easily using email notifications and text messaging.
  • Hire the most qualified candidates, who are also a good culture fit, faster and with less resource expenditure.

Want to check out the platform for yourself and see firsthand how it can streamline your hiring process? Jump in by starting your free trial today.

Recruitment Benefits: Why You Should Invest in Your Recruiting Program

Recruitment Benefits: Why You Should Invest in Your Recruiting Program

The workforce is the heart of any organization. Members of the team determine how efficiently things get done, as well as the level of service customers receive when interacting with the company. Hiring the right people to fill open positions is vital in building and maintaining strong teams. But without an effective recruiting program in place, your company may be scrambling to hire.

This article outlines the benefits of strong recruiting programs and why it’s worth investing in one, regardless of company size.

What is Recruiting?

Recruiting refers to the process of seeking, attracting, and bringing on talented individuals to fill open positions with a company. The process is a vital aspect of HR management, playing a pivotal role in the development of a capable and talented workforce.

When a company is recruiting to fill an open position, those involved in the hiring process typically complete multiple steps:

  • Analyzing the position, including its responsibilities, required skills, and qualifications, and writing a thorough job description.
  • Sourcing candidates through various outlets, including social media platforms, referrals, job boards, and recruiting agencies.
  • Screening applicants by reviewing applications and resumes, identifying those that meet the initial criteria.
  • Interviewing top candidates, which may occur in person or virtually.
  • Assessing and testing candidates to confirm their abilities or verify aspects of their personalities.
  • Offering the job to the top candidate and undergoing the negotiation process (if applicable).
  • Bringing the new hire onboard with information about the company procedures and policies and their new role.

11 Benefits of Strong Recruiting Efforts

Investing in your organization’s recruiting efforts can make a big difference in more than just the hiring process. The following 11 benefits come from good recruiting programs.

Access to top talent

When your organization recruits more effectively, this provides access to top talent. A well-defined strategy can target ideal candidates and channels for sourcing applicants, ensuring that recruiters focus on attracting the best people.

Good recruiting efforts also demonstrate the values and culture of the organization, along with opportunities for growth and advancement. As a result, people are more interested in working for the company and seek out open jobs.

Improved employee performance

Employees who feel supported in their roles tend to perform better. And when you fill open positions with talented and engaged individuals, teams tend to function more cohesively. By contrast, high turnover rates and poor hiring efforts can cause good employees to feel like they’re bearing the brunt of the workload. They may start to feel burned out and resentful, which causes a decline in overall performance and workplace morale.

Enhanced company culture

Your company culture is highly influenced by the people who work there. Hiring for cultural fit alongside core skills and competencies can help you continue to build and nurture the atmosphere you want in the workplace.

Higher retention rates

Employee retention is a highly discussed topic in today’s job market. When the Great Resignation occurred, employers were left scrambling to fill positions and meet customer needs. But strong recruiting practices can boost retention rates, which eases the strain on recruiters and managers.

Reduced time-to-hire

The average time spent on filling a position is 36 days. When your company has multiple roles to fill, the time can really add up. Freeing up time to spend on other tasks is certainly appealing, particularly among those who wear multiple hats. Plus, getting new employees up and running can ease the strain on their team members and increase productivity.

Cost savings

Every company, regardless of size, can benefit from saving money. And since it costs nearly $5,000 to bring on a new hire, making sure every new employee is the right fit is certainly appealing from a financial standpoint, not to mention the other benefits of keeping happy employees around.

Increased innovation and creativity

Employees who feel secure and supported in their roles tend to have higher engagement and productivity rates than those who are unhappy. When your recruiters find the right hires to fill positions, those individuals may feel happier when they come onboard. As a result, they’re more likely to come up with creative and innovative ideas, which can have a great benefit on your organization.

Positive employer branding

Employer branding refers to the image and reputation of an organization among its existing employees and potential candidates for roles. Beginning with the experience of each candidate, your company can generate a positive brand image. Ensure the application process is simple (and mobile-friendly) with regular check-ins and communication along the way. Texting is one of the best ways to stay in touch, as today’s applicants are much more likely to open and respond to texts than other forms of communication.

Positive employer branding can also aid in attracting top talent and building a stronger culture. When your team members are happy, they may serve as brand advocates, continuing to generate positive buzz around the business.

Long-term growth and sustainability

Effective recruiting can make a significant difference in the long-term sustainability and growth of an organization. When hiring managers identify people with the right expertise and skills needed in specific roles, they can help support growth initiatives. An agile workforce that is open to change can also adapt to changing market needs and competitive pressure.

Better customer experience

Employees who interact with customers should represent the company in a positive and supportive manner. When your organization invests in hiring talented individuals who are good cultural fits, it’s more likely that customers will have a positive experience during these interactions. Additionally, lower employee turnover rates often translate to better service, as more experienced and loyal employees have additional knowledge to share.

Competitive advantage

Gain a competitive advantage when you invest in your recruiting efforts. The benefits above outline how your company can enjoy greater success, increased growth, and a positive image. These and other advantages of strong recruiting make your company more appealing to jobseekers.

Enhance Your Recruiting (And Get These Benefits) with Quality Recruitment Software

When you need to hire top talent, you need the best tools at your disposal. And while some recruiting platforms are built for big business, ApplicantStack is ideal for the small-to-midsized organization. It’s designed with the needs of smaller companies in mind, with a price point that fits into just about any business budget. Plus, it doesn’t skimp on features – post to hundreds of a job boards with a click, take advantage of templates, and ensure a consistent onboarding process for every new hire.

Get started now with a free trial and take your recruiting program to the next level.

How to Handle Salary Discussions When Hiring

How to Handle Salary Discussions When Hiring

When it’s time to bring on a new hire, it can be a challenge to know how to handle compensation. This is especially the case when you’re filling a brand-new position without an established salary range or looking to bring on someone who is more experienced than the individual they’re replacing. Our guide to handling salary discussions in the recruiting process can help you move forward with confidence.

When to Discuss Salary

The first question that often comes up in the hiring process is when to start discussing salary with a potential candidate. The consensus is generally to at least include a range in the job listing to avoid wasting everyone’s time. A potential applicant may not want to take the time to apply for a job if the salary isn’t close to what they expect to earn. Additionally, it wastes the hiring manager or recruiter’s time when reviewing applications and interviewing people who aren’t really interested because of the salary.

Still not convinced? In our recent webinar with Indeed, we discussed some interesting stats with participants. Approximately 12 percent of job postings include salary information (up from 8 percent in 2019), yet more than 60 percent of candidates say that pay is the most important aspect. Your listings can stand out in a sea of competitors when you include pay information, offering transparency that jobseekers will appreciate.

Of course, you don’t have to give an exact number right away. Providing a range or asking the candidate to provide an expected salary when applying helps to ensure that everyone is on the same page.

How to Discuss Salary

It can also be challenging to discuss salary requirements if you’re not familiar with the process or comfortable talking about numbers. Take some time to familiarize yourself with common salary negotiation tactics and average pay rates for similar positions. The more information you have, the better equipped you’ll be to have a discussion.

Steps to Manage Salary Requirements

Ready to get started? Follow these steps to better manage salary requirements and discussions in the hiring process.

Start with the listing

As mentioned, your salary consideration should start when you create the posting for the open position. Whether you’re replacing someone or creating a new role, do some research on salary ranges in the field and similar positions. You can get a lot of useful information on sites like Glassdoor and LinkedIn, helping to ensure that your range is competitive and will attract top candidates.

Establish a top-end figure

It’s also important to establish a number that represents the very highest you can go for a new hire. Most candidates will negotiate the initial offer, so creating a top-end figure helps to ensure you’re not going over your labor budget in the process.

Be open to discussion

If you’re unwilling to negotiate on salary, a potential hire may walk away as this can signify a lack of flexibility. Candidates may also perceive this action as a knock on what they would bring to the role, such as specific abilities or experience. Be open to discuss the salary and consider what else you can offer if the pay scale is rigid.

Understand where the candidate is coming from

When you’re considering a new job, is salary important to you? The answer is likely yes. So, you can understand where someone else is coming from when wanting to know what to expect in terms of pay.

Try to put yourself in your candidate’s shoes when discussing compensation. This individual is considering a significant change to their situation by taking on a new role and all that comes with such a shift. They also need to support themselves and any dependents they have, so salary is certainly a top consideration when deciding whether to make a professional change.

FAQ about Salary and Hiring

Explore some of the most commonly asked questions from employers around salary details in the hiring process.

Should you include a salary range in your job listings?

Yes, it’s generally recommended to include at least a range in your job listings. New legislation in various cities and states will also require the inclusion of salary data in postings. It’s worthwhile to get in the habit of including it when filling positions, even if your city or state doesn’t require it at this time.

What should you do if a candidate wants to negotiate salary?

When a candidate comes in ready to negotiate salary, the best thing you can do is be prepared. Arm yourself with information and data so you can back up the offered range. It’s also important to be open to discussion. If an applicant has unique skills or extensive experience that will be particularly useful in the role, they likely deserve to sit at the higher end of the range rather than the entry point.

What should you do if you can’t go higher on salary?

Budgets are essential to a successful business. Going way over your established labor budget to secure a top candidate probably doesn’t make sense, especially if you run a smaller company. But you do have options!

Consider other benefits you could offer. For example, you could offer additional paid time off or a more flexible work schedule as a way to sweeten the deal. Other considerations include waiving or shortening the standard waiting period for health benefits, increasing a retirement contribution match, or providing upgraded equipment for personal use.

By taking a careful yet transparent approach to compensation, you can improve your hiring process while attracting more candidates to apply for your open roles.

How to Hire Employees: Define Your Hiring Selection Criteria

How to Hire Employees: Define Your Hiring Selection Criteria

This is the second post in our series: How to Hire Employees: The Ultimate GuideIn today’s post, we discuss how to create your selection criteria. This is one of the hiring process steps that is often overlooked. As with other components, the best practice is to create a standardized process and use it for each applicant.

How do you determine your hiring selection criteria?

Your screening criteria is the framework for evaluating and comparing applicants. It may include:

  • Resume review
  • Screening questionnaire
  • Prescreen phone call
  • Assessment
  • In-person or video interview
  • Social media review
  • Background check
  • Reference checks

Note that you can change the order or eliminate some elements. For example, some employers perform a reference check after extending the job offer.  And other recruiters talk to references before administering the assessment. Bottom line, build a recruitment process that works for your company, budget and hiring team.

Internal Hiring vs. Posting Publicly

Internal hiring makes sense in many situations. If you’ve been having trouble filling a position and have someone on staff with the necessary skills, for instance. Nevertheless, you’ll have to fill the internal hire’s original role. Another consideration is whether you are trying to increase diversity in your workforce. Internal hiring can reinforce the status quo.

Importantly, internal hiring is an essential part of a career advancement. Thus, you have to coordinate internal hiring with your career paths program as well as your hiring plan.

Who should be involved in the hiring decision process?

In addition to the hiring manager, who should have a say in which candidate is chosen? Some companies use outside recruiting firms. If you have a recruiter with a proven track record of finding star hires for your company, take their advice seriously. In addition, consider giving the new hire’s team a say in the selection. This can work as follows: have the team review the top three candidates (already approved by the hiring manager) and come to a consensus on which one to offer the job to.

Furthermore, some business owners (typically for smallish orgs) want to sign off on each hire. As mentioned, whichever plan you choose, document it and apply it consistently.

What is a screening questionnaire?

In this article, we focus on first-pass screening questionnaires. We discuss interviews, reference checks and background checks in subsequent articles.

A screening questionnaire is a first-pass filtering tool. It is used to isolate a subset of qualified candidates from the total applicant pool.

To create a screening questionnaire:

  1. Using the job description, identify the essential requirements and rank in order of importance
  2. Write a question for each of the selection criterion (skill, certification, years of experience, etc.)
  3. Determine the scoring system for the questions
  4. Organize questions and format in a document

Why does defining screening criteria come before posting the job? Once you begin the process, you are competing with other employers to find great candidates. Take the time up front so you don’t slow yourself down after the start.

Plus, you can still make changes to your job description if necessary because you haven’t already posted it. A good selection process requires a good job description. If you find yourself struggling to define your selection criteria, you probably need to go back improve your job description.

Write Your Screening Questions

As mentioned, you should have a list of job requirements from your job description. Now it’s time to write a question for each requirement. Remember, your job description splits skills into “must-haves” and “nice-to-haves.” The “must-haves” are your essential, or key selection criteria. 

Skills Gap Analysis

A skills gap analysis can help you create a hiring plan and identify roles and responsibilities. If you do a skills gap analysis, use the findings to clarify job roles and the specific skills necessary.

Back to screening questions. You will probably need a question and answer for each requirement. The question should determine whether a candidate meets the requirement. Therefore, make it clear and concise with action verbs.

Types of screening questions:

  • Yes/No answer (binary choice, can be a knockout question)
  • Multiple Choice
    • Select one answer from multiple choices
    • Choose as many as desired from multiple choices
  • Essay

How do you choose which types of questions to use? The first consideration is the number of applications you expect to receive. If you are hiring for a niche, highly-skilled role and don’t expect to receive many applications, you might have time to read essay answers. Consider, though, if it would make more sense to discuss those questions and answers in the interview.

On the flip side, if you will be fielding hundreds of applications, you won’t have time to read essay questions. For high-volume hiring, consider automation. Inexpensive applicant tracking systems have templates for questionnaires. More importantly, they tally scores automatically. Therefore, in the candidate database, the highest scoring candidates will rise in the queue. If you use knockout questions, an ATS will mark eliminated candidates Do Not Pursue. Though you’ve eliminated them for the role to which they applied, you can keep them in your database in case you want to reach out to them in the future for another role that could be a better fit.

Clearly, spending time up front to create a thorough screening questionnaire will pay off by finding a qualified candidate more quickly than ever.

How does filtering automation save time?

It’s important to understand the order of operations. With an ATS, your application contains the filtering questionnaire. Therefore, applicants self-filter before you start reviewing  resumes and conducting interviews. Let’s do the math. Suppose your open position attracts 100 applicants. All of them complete the filtering questionnaire as part of the application process. Out of the 100, suppose 50 are knocked out because they lack the basic qualifications. If you generally take 5 minutes per resume when deciding which candidates to move to the next step, a filtering questionnaire saves you 250 minutes or a little over 4 hours. If you have 3 open positions simultaneously, that’s over 12 hours saved for just one step in the selection process.

Example Filtering Questions

Suppose you are hiring for a WordPress Web Developer. Let’s say your highest priority is whether the candidate has 4 years experience developing WordPress themes.

WordPress Web Developer Sample Filtering Questions

  • Do you have 4 years experience developing WordPress themes? Y N [KNOCKOUT]
    • If the applicant marks NO, they are knocked out of the applicant pool.
  • Do you have 4-6 years experience developing WordPress themes? Y N [2 POINTS]
  • Do you have 6-8 years experience developing WordPress themes? Y N [4 POINTS]
    • If the applicant answers YES, they receive extra points as indicated.
  • What is your salary requirement? [ESSAY or Y/N]
    • You can let the applicant enter an amount or list the maximum compensation budgeted and let the applicant mark Y or N regarding the amount.

Apply Scoring Criteria to Resumes

In addition to screening questionnaires, you can create scoring rules for resumes. For example, you can assign a numeric point value for skills, certifications or qualifications. Let’s say you’re hiring for a server in a restaurant. You could assign points for a valid food handler’s permit or number of years of experience.

Scoring Applicants

When the applications start coming in, you’ll need to score each one using your predefined criteria. You will calculate a total score for each applicant. This serves as a first pass assessment of the candidate’s match to the position. It will also eliminate applicants if you use knockout questions.

The mechanics of applicant management depend on whether you have a paper-based or digital process. If you accept paper applications, you can sort them in piles or folders by score. On the other hand, if you only accept digital applications, you can record scores in a spreadsheet. If you know how to create formulas in Microsoft Excel, you can let the spreadsheet tally scores.

Assessment Tools

Another option is to use professional assessment tools in the hiring process. If you have the budget, pre-employment assessments can save you a lot of time. Assessment tools not only measure aptitude and skills, they can predict how a candidate will perform in the position. There are hundreds of companies that create assessment software and tools–specializing in various job positions and industries. You can research them on Capterra, G2, or Software Advice.

Social Media Review

According to a 2018 CareerBuilder survey, 70% of companies look at candidates’ social media pages as part of their evaluation process. It’s safe to assume that number has risen since the survey was conducted.

Should you check applicants’ social media profiles? Sure, you may be able to find out a lot of stuff that you can’t legally ask on an application or in an interview. But is that a good idea?

Recruiter and researcher Atta Tarki advises against the practice. After his team reviewed 266 U.S. job applicants’ social media sites, Tarki said:

“…a significant share of profiles contained details that companies may be legally prohibited from considering, including gender, race, and ethnicity (evident in 100% of profiles), disabilities (7%), pregnancy status (3%), sexual orientation (59%), political views (21%), and religious affiliation (41%). Many of the job seekers’ profiles also included information of potential concern to prospective employers: 51% of them contained profanity, 11% gave indications of gambling, 26% showed or referenced alcohol consumption, and 7% referenced drug use.” Stop Screening Job Candidates’ Social Media, Harvard Business Review, October 2021

Another member of the research team added:

“You can see why many recruiters love social media—it allows them to discover all the information they aren’t allowed to ask about during an interview, but that’s a problem, because one of the hallmarks of legal hiring practices is that they focus on behaviors within the work context. There should be a clear distinction between what people do during work and what they do outside of it.” Chad Van Iddekinge, Professor of Management, University of Iowa

Work Efficiently as a Team

Finding the top candidate is more likely when it’s a team effort. But don’t leave collaboration to chance. When building your hiring process, be proactive and intentional about collaboration. The hiring team should be involved in:

  • Creating a hiring plan
  • Mapping the hiring process
  • Writing the job description
  • Deciding where to post the job
  • Identifying the evaluation criteria
  • Designating roles and responsibilities
  • Evaluating the candidates
  • Interviewing the candidates
  • Extending the job offer to the top applicant

It bears repetition: an applicant tracking system can streamlines the entire process and help you ultimately find the right candidate. First of all, you can write and manage screening questionnaires in the system. Secondly, you can build workflow checklists to show where each applicant is in the process. Thirdly, you can assign tasks to team members (and set auto-reminders) so everyone knows what they are supposed to do. Finally, each member of the hiring team can add notes for all to see.

Crafting Your Applicant’s Journey

The applicant, or candidate journey, is the total experience for the job seeker, starting with the application and continuing through every touch point. The applicant journey reflects on your employer brand. For example, a confusing, disorganized process will give candidates the impression that your company is disorganized. In a tight labor market, you can’t afford to neglect the candidate journey if you want to compete for top talent.

How do you ensure a positive applicant journey?

Here are some tips:

  • Make your application process mobile-friendly and painless
  • Text or email your candidates frequently to keep them updated on their status
  • Make it easy to schedule an interview by texting the candidate a link to a shared calendar
  • Write interview scripts and ask the same questions of every candidate
  • Use applicant tracking software to make the hiring process as quick as possible

For more information on improving the applicant journey at your organization, see The Ideal Applicant Journey in 3 Steps: Use Hiring Psychology Like a Pro.

Let’s review where we are in the series: