How To: Create an Exceptional Candidate Experience

Candidates these days have a whole host of platforms to choose between when searching for a job, which means although they might be overwhelmed, they can in fact be more selective. There is so much out there, they will often abandon ship fairly quickly if an application doesn’t quite meet their standards.

With that in mind, recruiters and candidates are on an even level playing field, with the recruiter having to put in the hard work if they intend to source exceptional talent and not let it slip away during the process.

Put yourself in the candidate’s shoes. It isn’t easy to find a job, and being left wondering what happened to your application or whether you got the job is extremely frustrating. Here are two main areas to focus on in the bid for hiring harmony:


  • Keep it simple

A candidate is likely to be reading hundreds of job descriptions per week, and will initially scan read to find the points relevant to them. They want to identify whether they meet the requirements, so it is crucial to make the job description to the point and clear. As long as the description explains what the job entails, the key responsibilities, and requirements of the ideal candidate, that is enough – and remember that further details about the job can be outlined in the interview stage.

Make it as easy as possible for candidates to find out about your company. Outdated websites are off-putting, and could be damaging for a candidate in an interview talking about the company as per two years ago. Ensure that there is up to date, relevant information out there about your company and it is easy for a candidate to digest.

Many job seekers are now choosing to apply for jobs via their mobile phones via the internet or specific apps, so it is important to make sure your job openings are out there in as many places as possible. For candidates on the go, the application process should be well systemised and uncomplicated.


  • Give feedback

Candidates are not mind readers, so tell them where they are in the application process. Keep them in the loop with a simple email or call, even just telling them the date that they should expect a response, and they will thank you for it.

Not every candidate will get through to the interview stage, yet if you wish for them to apply in the future, and care about the reputation of your company, a simple follow up email will keep the candidates on your side and shows that you are respectful and recognise their efforts.

If a candidate is selected for interview, they need to know that you are contactable with any questions, but what will really increase their experience is receiving a call from you prior to the interview, to find out how they are feeling, if they need any help etc.

Following the interview, candidates will feel relieved – they got through it alive, and (in most cases) it went better than expected. Yes, they want the job, and yes, they will be disappointed with a rejection, however ultimately they just want to know either way. The period of uncertainty is a nervous one, and a radio silence is very common. Give the candidate some feedback that will help them with further application processes, and leave them with a positive outlook on their experience with you.


Denni Ovarec, Director of Programs at The Talent Board, said: “Candidates who were not hired but were treated well are more likely to apply again, to refer others to apply, and remain a customer or an admirer of the company.”

The candidate experience is integral in the recruiting progress, impacting how well a company is able to recruit quality candidates, and the popularity of their employer brand. If recruiters keep their candidates informed, communicate openly and be honest, they could actually improve their overall hiring metrics.


Ataris Search provides clients with trusted, effective and innovative solutions for any required recruitment assignment. To find out more about our services, please call 01925 839829 to speak to a friendly member of the team, or email

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