Would Candidates Recommend Your Company? Here are 10 Tips to Ensure They Do.

Drake Editorial Team

How your company is perceived with your recruiting, screening, hiring and interviewing process is critical. Why? Candidates have the power to express their feelings of the experience, be it good or bad, to a massive audience thanks to social media platforms and the Internet.


Negative comments have the potential to do great damage making it difficult to attract top talent and keep top performers on board.


  • 69% of candidates will never apply to your company again if their experience is negative
  • 72% of candidates who have a negative experience will tell others about it


By comparison, positive feedback is a boost for corporate reputations, employee engagement, loyalty, and retention. People want to work for companies who treat candidates, and all staff with respect. Positive experiences through the entire hiring process have a major impact in all areas.


Let’s focus on 10 crucial components to improve your candidates’ experiences.


  1. Be crystal clear on what you need. Ensure your hiring managers fully understand the job requirements, skills, experience, personality, as well as behaviours needed in a candidate. They form the foundation for your job description, advertisements, as well as for interviewing and selection. A smooth overall hiring process ensures less frustrations for everyone involved.


  1. Make it easy for applicants to apply. No one wants to spend time trying to figure out how to apply for a position with a cumbersome application process. Make it easy and welcoming and ensure your careers site is easy to find. Give clear instructions at each stage of the application process and make all touchpoints mobile-friendly. Reducing frustrations and removing any unnecessary steps will help ensure you attract the candidates you want and that the experience for all those applying is positive.


  1. Acknowledge all job applications. Everyone applying for a position wants a response. Prompt communication during all hiring stages is the foundation of a positive experience. It demonstrates that you value the time they took to respond to your open position. Send a ‘thank you for your application’ email to let them know it wasn’t lost. This also signals you have an organised hiring process. Let them know you are currently reviewing all applications and mention a timeframe for interviews (e.g. in the next two weeks). Indicate that if they are among the qualified candidates that they will receive (e.g. a call/email) to schedule a (e.g. initial phone interview). Thank them for taking the time to apply and tell them you will keep them posted on the status of their application. Send a rejection email or an interview invite as soon as you can.


  1. Outline what candidates can expect. When you have narrowed down the candidates you want to interview, clearly outline each recruitment step to them. Clear expectations will keep the process moving smoothly and ensure candidates won’t be left wondering if they need to prepare anything in advance or should follow up.


  1. Make each candidate feel valued. Remember that for every person you communicate with and interview, they are equally interviewing you. Negative or positive impressions and experiences will stay in their minds to be shared with others. It is important you always show respect, and make each candidate feel valued if you want them to recommend your company to others.


  1. Call candidates before asking them to take a test or do an assignment. Incorporating personality and behavioural assessments and skills assignments into your hiring process is important. They help narrow down the candidates who would best fit the position, your culture, and team. Call each candidate and put them at ease by providing clear instructions on the task and answering their questions. Thank them after they have completed each assignment and clarify the next steps in the process such as how many interviews, how long, who is involved, and the format.


  1. Don’t leave them hanging. Silence leads to a negative experience. If you are no longer considering some candidates after the interviewing process, tell them as soon as you can. Candidates will take a very negative view of your company if you don’t bother to tell them as quickly as possible so they can move on. Provide some tactful feedback. If there were things you liked about the candidate, tell them. Positive feedback helps them learn from the interview, softens the blow, and provides them with a more positive experience.


  1. Keep them updated and be transparent. Advise candidates if there are any unexpected delays in the selection process, and why, such as the hiring manager having a family emergency. People can handle delays much better if they are informed and not kept in the dark. It’s the unknown that can breed negative feelings. Always be transparent with your hiring timelines and keep everyone updated regularly. Frequent communication is critical for positive experiences.


  1. Review your onboarding processes. Ensure your onboarding processes are welcoming and informative for your new hire. A good onboarding experience is key to retention. Employees usually decide within the first six months if they want to stay or leave their new job. If they depart, they will take negative impressions with them to share with others. This will harm your corporate reputation and the ability to attract top performers. Assimilating them into your corporate culture and providing ongoing support will keep them motivated, engaged, and positive.


  1. Obtain feedback. It is difficult to make positive improvements in your selection processes if you don’t know what needs to change. Ask candidates to fill out a short e-mail survey at the end of the hiring process to understand what could be improved and thank them for their time. You should also read employer review boards like Glassdoor and review social media mentions. Ask new hires what could be improved and employees what they may have heard about your company’s hiring practices. Information is a vital tool in moving from negative to positive experiences and improving your corporate reputation.


Providing regular communication, being supportive, and making everyone feel valued will go a long way to ensuring everyone has a positive experience with your hiring process. Their experiences are critical in developing a great employer brand and attracting the best talent.


Ensuring that all applicants and candidates have a positive experience with your company is a vital part of the hiring process and brand reputation. It is also critical to ensure your organisation is staffed with the right people at the right time.  


At Drake South Africa, we offer a portfolio of talent management solutions including Permanent, Flexible, and Specialty Recruitment as well as Psychometric, Behavioural and Skill Assessments.


We partner with you to provide extensive time-tested processes to deliver a high-caliber full-time workforce or flexible staffing support when your workload fluctuates.


With over 70 years of experience, Drake International continues to be invested in your success to help ensure you receive the right talent solutions, whatever your requirement.


At Drake, we are focused on Your People, Your Performance, and Your Profit. Contact us today at 0860 22 23 24 and let us help you right now with your HR requirements and challenges.



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