New technology has done a lot to improve job application processes at companies worldwide. Unfortunately, some human resources professionals lean on technology too much and run the risk of isolating or offending promising job candidates. Recruiters are on the front lines for all candidate interaction, so while using an applicant tracking system (ATS) is a great way to increase hiring success, lower costs and improve processes, it’s important to keep the human touch in the application process. No matter the type of company for which you work, treating your candidates like your clients is a winning HR strategy.
Treat Your Candidates Like Customers
As an HR professional, you wear many hats. You might take care of hiring, payroll and handle all employee concerns. Perhaps you run education programs for corporate employees or track EEO data for the federal government. With so many tasks to handle, it’s easy to put your ATS on autopilot when it comes to your recruiting efforts. However, it’s important to create a balance between technological advances and human interaction. Use an ATS to to help you focus on your candidates without relying on the system for all candidate communication.
When considering how you currently treat clients, think through your last hiring effort. Did you personally send an email to all candidates who applied for the position? How long did it take you to reach out to applicants? Now imagine that these individuals aren’t job candidates, but clients who bring thousands of dollars of revenue to your business every year. Are you treating them with respect and integrity? If you haven’t had time to focus on your candidates lately, consider the repercussions.
While it’s impossible to prevent everyone who applies for a position at your company from being upset, it is possible to prevent bad publicity related to shortcomings in your department. If you fail to respond to a qualified applicant or only send automated messages to candidates, you might start seeing negative comments on social networking and job search sites. Bitter job candidates can create bad buzz for your company, which could put a bad mark on your recruiting reputation and deter future qualified candidates from applying. These simple comments can have a seriously detrimental effect on your future hiring efforts.
Be An Advocate for Your Organization
When it comes to working with job applicants, it may help to think of yourself as an advocate for your company. Strive to show all candidates that you prioritize being timely, consistent, organized and respectful. It might be uncomfortable to contact candidates who didn’t land a job, but it’s essential that you’re honest with applicants, as even a rejection can be appreciated as opposed to being ignored. Even those individuals who don’t make the final cut can create positive buzz for your company if they feel that they were treated with respect throughout the hiring process.