Let’s face it, not every prospective candidate who applies will be selected for a job opening. However,the way in which your organization treats each applicant during the recruiting process may determine whether or not your employment brand can continue to attract top candidates.
A recent blog post on Harvard Business Review entitled “How Coke and Pepsi Are Using Social Media to Build Their ‘Trust Ba... draws the link between social media presence, reputation, and branding. The author argues that in the Wild Wild West of social media, the strong relationship these consumer brands are building with their customers will help them should they face any future trust issues. This concept got me thinking about how the quality of the recruiting process may impact the future recruiting success of employers.
Given the democratization of the publishing platform with blogs, Twitter, YouTube and Facebook; I think that it is only a matter of time before we start seeing candidates openly complaining about poor recruiting treatment. While that would mark a noticeable shift in the currently private relationship between employers and prospective candidates, it is really no different than what already happens offline. The only difference is that depending on the size of an individual’s community or the creativity of the storytelling, an employer may find their employment brand at risk because of existing practices which many candidates already view as inconsiderate. So, what can employers do to establish trust among candidates?
Given the potential for employment brand damage, companies need to focus their energies in a couple of areas. First, they need to figure out what about their existing recruiting process is challenging to prospective candidates. A recent post by Susan Strayer highlighted a series of questions that employers should be asking of jobs seekers in order to figure out the gaps between expectations and realities.
Develop & Implement Solutions
Once survey data been collected, employers need to work to develop actionable solutions for candidate concerns. Whether it is through an updated applicant tracking system or increased communication during the process; the key is to implement solutions before they become a problem. There are likely several areas of opportunities that each organization can focus upon to improve the candidate experience. By focusing on the survey data from prospective applications, your recruiting team can determine 1-3 key areas that should be addressed in the short term and an additional 3-5 that can be addressed over time. As these solutions are implemented, an ongoing feedback loop between prospective candidates and the organization should be established. Are the implemented solutions having the expected impact? If not, why not?
Make Deposits Into Trust Bank
Finally, companies need to establish a social media presence so that they can establish bankable trust with prospective candidates. From answering questions about the process, to reducing the time between application and notification; there are numerous actions that employers can take to build trust in the recruiting process with prospective candidates. The key is to have such a great process in place that even candidates that aren’t selected will be impressed with their treatment. While this is a high bar, the alternative is a potential candidate’s perception (real or imagined) that they were treated unfairly which leads to a viral YouTube video or Twitter campaign against your employment brand. Remember, the candidates not selected are most likely to engage in behavior that is destructive to your employment brand.
Given the power of social media and the associated interconnectedness of networks, it is important for employers to understand how their process stacks up, fix those areas of concern, and create groups of candidates who can credibly speak about the quality of your recruiting process regardless of ultimate selection. Employers that do this well will not only be able to internally defend their employment brand, but they will also have a willing group of former and prospective candidates that will confirm a quality recruiting experience.
–Omowale Casselle (@mysensay)
About the Author: Omowale Casselle is the co-founder and CEO of mySenSay, a social recruiting community focused on connecting talented college students with amazing entry-level employment opportunities. For more social recruiting insights, subscribe to our email distribution list or follow us on Twitter.