Focusing on the Candidate Experience in Remote Interviews

Focusing on the Candidate Experience in Remote Interviews

In a full or partially remote work environment, prioritizing the candidate experience through remote interviews can pose unique challenges. How can your organization showcase its culture? Can applicants and managers really ‘connect’ over video? What about the technology? But the payoffs – increased acceptance rates and reduced time to hire – are hard to ignore.

At least a third of American jobs expected to remain remote through 2021. Smart companies understand the importance of tailoring their recruitment processes to appeal to top talent in any part of the world.

Candidates’ Remote Interviewing Experience Matters

Candidates who receive offers are 38% more likely to accept if they feel satisfied by the hiring process. And a whopping 62% of those who don’t accept will still recommend the organization based on a positive candidate experience. Even better, 80% of applicants who don’t receive an offer will apply again for a different position based on a favorable impression of the hiring process.

Candidates who report a negative experience, however, are unlikely to re-apply or recommend the organization. One study even found that a poor recruitment process led applicants to take their business elsewhere, negatively impacting sales.

Below are some ways to support applicants through a remote interview and hiring process to make the best possible impression.

Set Candidates Up for Success in Remote Interviews

Be proactive.

Reach out to candidates well in advance of the interview to explain your hiring process and set expectations. For example, your job posting might link directly to your pre-recorded video interview platform or a dedicated hiring portal with helpful information about how your organization has updated its hiring procedures to protect employees and candidates.

Be specific.

Don’t assume that candidates are familiar with the technology required for a successful remote interview or have easy access to equipment. A simple email (sent well in advance) setting out your technical specifications or an instructional video explaining how to access any proprietary software empowers candidates to troubleshoot before the big day.

If your hiring process includes an asynchronous video interview, make sure candidates are aware of considerations like lighting, background noise, or camera quality so everyone has an equal opportunity to shine.

Be yourself.

One study found that 97% of candidates rate culture as a critical factor in deciding to accept an offer.  But how do you showcase what makes your organization unique through a laptop screen? Video is a great tool for introducing candidates to current employees in a variety of roles and functions. And don’t forget social media. Search company hashtags across platforms for candid photos of events or volunteer efforts to showcase your culture to potential new hires.

Be human.

Although a majority of candidates prefer video interviews, remote interviews conducted through webcams can feel impersonal to some. Organizations using structured interviews might consider nominating a particularly extraverted team member to pre-record questions using friendly, accessible language. If your company prefers to conduct live remote interviews, be sure to leave time for relaxed and informal conversation during the first few minutes of a discussion to give candidates time to relax or address any technical issues.

Be prepared.

Remote interviews lean heavily on technology, which makes for a more efficient recruitment process. An efficient process is especially important because you stand a good chance of losing a great hire due to a lengthy recruitment process. But don’t get so caught up on speed that you neglect to train your team. Everyone involved in the remote interview process should receive comprehensive training in any software or special tools. Remember to request feedback from applicants about how they felt throughout the recruitment and interview phases of their hiring journey.

The candidate experience is a critical, but often overlooked, component of the hiring process. Taking the time to connect with your candidates during remote interviews not only increases the likelihood of making the right hire. It also raises the profile of your organization and its employment brand across a broader pool of applicants. As you transition to remote interviews and socially-distanced recruiting, take the time to set your candidates and your company up for success with clear communication and appropriate technology.

See how Cangrade can support your remote hiring process. Find out more.

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