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Hiring is one of the most important things that a company does and, given the cost involved in looking for someone new, is not something that companies do lightly. Many companies spend a lot of time trying to find exactly the right person, going through rounds of job postings, interviews, and offer negotiations. They are careful to craft their image in a way that appeals to the individuals they want to hire and spend quite a bit of time wooing those candidates who are among the best and the brightest.
But what most companies don’t think of is how they appear to the candidates they are not looking to hire. After all, why should they? It’s not as if those people are going to be part of the company.
However what these companies forget is that candidates are still members of the public and every chance a company has to engage with the public can be leveraged into a marketing opportunity. Job candidates will extrapolate from their experience with your company and judge your entire brand along with it.
These candidates are still individuals in the market, and they know other individuals in the market as well. What are they saying after they interview with someone? What do they tell their friends and family about the company? And, more importantly, after the process is over, would the candidate still buy products with the company they interviewed with? A negative interview experience can spread insidiously, poisoning your brand’s recognition- even more so now that interview review sites like GlassDoor are gaining visibility online.
Improving a brand through hiring can also, coincidentally, help with hiring in the future. According to research from LinkedIn, if people admire your brand “they’re more likely to be aware of your company as an employer and potentially think it would be a good place to work,” which can lead to better candidates and lower starting salaries.
In fact, according to CareerBuilder, 68% of job seekers interviewed said that they would accept a lower salary if the employer created a great impression through their hiring process.
So what can businesses do to improve their hiring process? Here are a couple mistakes to avoid:
Vague job descriptions – Not only is this a bad idea for hiring as it provides potential job applicants with little information about what the company is looking for, but it is also a terrible lost opportunity when it comes to branding. A detailed job description is a great chance to spread branding information about the company and get people excited about your brand- even if they don’t end up working for you.
No response- There is a bit of a epidemic of company’s not responding to applicants or people who have had interviews in a timely fashion. It’s become so much of an issue that CareerBuilder reports that 62% of job seekers don’t feel that the companies they have applied to have been responsive. It is such an epidemic, in fact, that simply replying back to applicants to let them know that the position has been filled is a pleasant surprise and, if you take a little time in your response, a good chance to build your brand further.
Shoddy interviews- Always be prepared for an interview. Remember that job candidates are looking to “buy” a job as much as you are looking to hire them. A pleasant and enjoyable interview experience will help you attract better talent and leave the candidate with a favorable experience of your brand.
Not staying connected with A listers- Choosing a final candidate is always a difficult decision, and there are often multiple individuals who would make a good fit for the job. In this case it is common to promise applicants that you will leave their resume on file and contact them for positions in the future, but how often does that actually happen? These are individuals that you know are great, so why not reach out to them? Consider reaching out to them with a personal note every couple of months to stay in touch. Even if you don’t end up hiring them, these are talented individuals who will likely find excellent jobs elsewhere- and it’s a great networking and branding opportunity to stay in touch with them.