When considering the recruitment process as a business, your candidates and applicants are customers. You want to provide your customers with exemplary customer service in all good businesses. So why is it that oftentimes customer service is overlooked during the recruitment process? Customer service is crucial to successful recruiting, so providing this for all candidates is imperative. Keep reading to see why customer service needs to be a critical aspect of your recruitment process and the steps you can take to improve it at your organization.

Reason 1: A bad experience can deter quality candidates

Microsoft found that 63% of U.S. customers say they have stopped doing business with a brand due to a poor customer service experience. There can be a variety of reasons why a candidate may have a poor experience during your organization’s overall recruiting and hiring process. The application may take too long to fill out or maybe too complicated; a candidate may not have heard back from a recruiter after a phone screen, or a hiring manager may have said something unprofessional in an interview. These may not seem like a big deal at the time, but they can greatly affect whether a candidate decides they want to work for an organization.

Customer Service Quote 1.pngReason 2: Poor customer service can influence others

If a candidate experiences some form of bad customer service while being recruited, he/she will be most likely to tell others about it. According to Salesforce, consumers are twice as likely to share their bad customer service experiences than their good ones. A candidate may be inclined to leave a bad review on sites such as Glassdoor or Indeed, which can negatively affect your brand. Candidates may also tell their friends and family about their poor experience, which could lead to others not applying or being interested in your organization as an employer.

Customer Service Quote 2.pngReason 3: Good customer service can lead to lasting relationships

Good customer service can lead to lasting relationships with a candidate, whether or not they become a hire or not. Marketing Metrics found that you have a 60 – 70% chance of selling to an existing customer. This especially comes into play when you are looking for referrals or endorsements for your organization. A happy candidate will be much more inclined to refer your organization to someone if they had a great recruitment experience.

Customer Service Quote 3.pngReason 4: How you treat your candidates reflects on your organization’s brand

According to Glassdoor, 11% of job seekers said they would decline a job offer from an employer with a bad reputation– even if they were unemployed. Your organization’s brand isn’t just your product or service. The recruitment process can be a factor in how a customer views your overall brand. Sometimes the first interaction someone has with your organization is through a recruiter or hiring manager. In this case, each aspect of your organization must reflect your overall brand while providing exemplary customer service.

Customer Service Quote 4.pngHow can you improve customer service in your recruitment process?

Understand your candidate’s needs

When recruiters and hiring managers work with candidates, it’s important to learn specifically what each candidate is looking for in a job or potential employer. Communication is key here as you need to understand what aspects of your organization can be used to sell to these potential candidates. Each candidate will have varying needs depending on where they are in their career, which skills they have, and where they are looking for their career to progress. Listen to your customer and find ways to meet their needs.

Be more responsive

Candidates don’t want to feel like they are being ignored or not cared for during the recruitment process. If they just applied, send an application confirmation email with the next steps in the hiring process. If they have a phone screen, explain to them what to expect in a possible interview. When they are interviewing, let them know how long before the hiring manager will let them know about a decision. You need to take the time to provide answers for your customers and follow up with them when you can. They would truly appreciate it if you could send a quick email or provide an update on a phone call.

Monitor the recruitment process

As you start incorporating more customer service into the recruitment process, evaluating it and seeing what is changing is important. Monitor your organization’s online profiles, like Glassdoor, Indeed, and LinkedIn, to see what candidates say about you as an employer and your hiring process. Be sure to get feedback from candidates as well, whether or not they end up getting hired. You can have recruiters follow up with candidates or send some type of anonymous survey. This way, you can receive honest feedback and see where improvements can still be made.

As it continues to move toward a candidate-driven job market, your organization must find ways to stand out. Providing true customer service for your candidates is one way to ensure that they will have a pleasant recruiting experience and become happy employees.


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