Companies are entering a new era of hiring, where a reimagined candidate-first approach can help guide recruiters and hiring managers in 2022—which seems to be particularly true when it comes to company culture; 80 percent said it was important to understand a company’s culture before they would accept an offer, new research from talent recruiting solutions provider Cappfinity finds.
The firm’s newly released 2022 Candidate Experience Survey, conducted by YouGov, gauges American job seeker experiences over the past year (i.e., since mid-November 2020).
“Now more than ever, job seekers want to know the salary, benefits and career-building opportunities provided by an organization,” said Cappfinity CEO and co-founder Dr. Alex Linley, in a news release. “But today’s workers in the U.S. also expect to be valued, and the candidate experience is their first glimpse into whether a prospective employer can deliver on this.”
Currently there are over 11 million open job postings in the U.S. During a tough year wrought with unprecedented challenges and change, the survey shows recruiters and hiring organizations have been providing candidates with a slightly above average experience, earning a 6 out of 10 rating, on average, from job seekers on the overall recruiting processes.
These mean ratings highlight areas for improvement:
- Communicated expectations for the role – 6.1
- Respected my time and schedule – 6.1
- Length of interview/ hiring process – 6.0
- Responsiveness after initial screening – 6.0
- Provided information about compensation and employee benefits – 6.0
- Prepared skillful interview questions – 5.9
- Demonstrated the company culture clearly – 5.9
- Created an opportunity to meet employees virtually – 5.8
- Shared the organization’s diversity, equity, and inclusion commitment – 5.7
But improving the candidate experience remains critically important with many organizations struggling not only to retain existing talent but also the talent in their hiring pipelines; 56 percent of respondents report abandoning at least one recruiting process within the past year with 38 percent of them making it a point to always inform recruiters or hiring companies that they were opting out of the recruitment process.
The top five reasons candidates opted out are:
- Lack of information about compensation and employee benefits – 26 percent
- Lack of responsiveness after initial screening – 24 percent
- Length of interview/hiring process – 22 percent
- The interviewer did not prepare skillful interview questions – 22 percent
- No respect for the candidate’s time or schedule – 21 percent
If there was any doubt about the personal implications of the candidate experience, 51 percent reported they would be unlikely to work with a specific recruiter again if they did not provide a positive interviewing experience. The survey findings also suggest there is room for recruiters and hiring organizations to provide candidates with more opportunities to demonstrate the value they can bring to the organization with 2-in-10 or fewer candidates in the midst of a recruiting/interviewing process receiving:
- Interview tips or preparation resources – 20 percent
- Virtual introductory meetings with employees – 19 percent
- Post-interview feedback – 19 percent
- Work simulation – 17 percent
- Case study/project – 14 percent
“We know organizations are trying to hire for the future of work skills. With demand fiercer than ever, now is the time to give candidates opportunities to showcase their skills in immersive, on-the-job scenarios. Organizations like Latham & Watkins and the United Nations have leveraged Cappfinity digital assessments and job simulations to hire for their current and future needs,” said Cappfinity chief customer officer and co-founder Nicky Garcea, in the release. “Today’s job seekers want more of an opportunity to interact with the people they would be working with—a reasonable ask given the available virtual technologies, which can also give organizations deep insights into whether candidates are the right fit.”
To further assist recruiters and hiring managers with their candidate experience priorities in 2022, survey respondents also weighed in on the top ways recruiters/hiring companies kept candidates engaged during the interview/hiring process. These included providing the candidate with:
- Regular updates on application/candidacy status – 37 percent
- Post-interview feedback – 28 percent
- Opportunities to showcase how the candidate would approach tasks associated with the job (work simulation) – 24 percent
- Virtual introductory meetings with employees the candidate would be working with – 20 percent
- Virtual company tours – 18 percent
All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 3,703 adults, of whom 1,155 interviewed for a job in the past 12 months (i.e., since mid-November 2020). Fieldwork was undertaken between November 18-22, 2021. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighed and are representative of all U.S. adults (aged 18+).