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I love meeting new people, networking, and relationship building in general, for the most part, I love people. It is possible on a Friday afternoon I may not say those exact words. The relationship building part of my personality is critical to what I do for a living. Recently, I was told my personal coddling of candidates was little over the top. Am I really a candidate’s Linus blanket?
From an initial cold call to hiring an employee there is a lot of time to get to know a candidate. Even if the candidate turns out not to be a fit for my organization, it’s a great opportunity to make a new connection. As a true recruiter would say “it never hurts to have a conversation.”
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7 ways to develop a relationship with candidates.
- Return phone calls and emails within 24 hours. This is one of the most crucial aspects of building a worthy candidate experience. Candidates will feel more connected to a recruiter if they feel like the recruiter cares about them enough to respond promptly to messages.
- If I schedule an interview with a candidate 1 week in advance, I call again just to check in and say “Hi”. I want to be top of mind!
- Send regular LinkedIn connections to new people I have connected with: Go the extra step with LinkedIn. Make sure you’re connecting with people you meet so you can always have a face to the name.
- After an interview, follow up with the candidate in at least 48 hours. If I don’t have an answer yet, I tell them: Transparency is important in the job process. This will keep candidates from guessing. Avoiding the black hole of resume and interview processes will go along way in improving the candidate experience.
- A week before entering training class, I snail mail each candidate a welcome to our team card
- Once on board, I check in at least once during their first month
- Honesty is the best policy: If someone didn’t get the job, tell them. Be honest with them throughout the entire process and it’ll go a long way in improving the overall candidate experience.
I can understand how my “over communication” can seem to be a bit much however; there is logic behind the madness. Candidates are excited, eager and the want attention. Matching their enthusiasm has helped me build a sense of urgency with candidates and a true desire to move onto the next step in the hiring process. Creating a better candidate experience through communication has also improved my show rate to interviews.
To the next candidate I speak with don’t worry, I don’t want to be your security blanket but I do want to get to know you. I want to see how I can help you build your career regardless, if you chose to join me or not.