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The Most Important Element of Candidate Experience

Are you ignoring the most important aspect of the candidate experience?

Providing a good candidate experience can make the difference between the best candidates accepting or rejecting your job offer. It can even enhance your reputation over time and help to attract more and better applicants in the future.

You probably already know the basics:

  • Job postings/advertisements/descriptions should be informative, interesting, and maybe even exciting.
  • Application processes should be convenient, accessible, and easy to use.
  • Pre-employment assessments should provide relevant feedback.
  • Interviewers should be welcoming, professional, and competent.

But if that’s all you’re thinking about, you’re missing something else. Something essential.

Fairness matters in the candidate experience

When it comes to the candidate experience, you should think beyond positive or negative.

People care just as much about fairness in the candidate experience. For example, it’s not just about whether your candidate selection standards are easy or difficult—it’s whether they’re relevant or irrelevant.

It’s not just whether the interviewer is friendly or unfriendly—it’s whether they’re biased or unbiased. Perceptions of fairness during a candidate’s experience has substantial effects further down the line.

A recent series of studies found that:

  • Candidates who felt that they had been treated fairly found the job more desirable.
  • Candidates who felt that they had been treated fairly were more likely to say positive things and recommend the organization to friends and colleagues.
  • The actual hiring decisions didn’t have a huge effect. Rejected candidates showed the same basic pattern of results.