Managing Candidates After the Interview Process
After concluding an interview process, its decision-making time. Are you going to move forward and offer this candidate, or will they be rejected? Whichever option, it’s important that the process is managed correctly.
Let’s start with the positive outcome. Your interviews have shown the candidate has the skills, knowledge, and attitude that you believe will make them successful in this role, therefore you’ve decided to make them an offer. Candidates often have more than one interview process happening at a time, so it’s important that the offer process is handled correctly:
1. Speed– leaving a candidate waiting for days after their interview won’t give them the best impression and it also allows time for a competitor to swoop in.
2. Build the relationship – offers should always be made over the phone, an email can be impersonal and also doesn’t give you the opportunity to gauge their initial reaction.
3. Be enthusiastic – this is an exciting time for the candidate, and you. Let it show! Explain why you have made the decision to offer and explain why you are keen to get them on board.
4. Continue to sell – you’ve not secured them yet. Reiterating the company’s plans, opportunities and how they fit into this will aid their decision making. Also listen out for any questions they have and answer them as quickly as possible.
5. Follow up with the details – It can be a lot to take in over the phone, so ensure you follow up with the details of the offer and benefits in writing.
Hopefully, if the figures are correct and these steps have been followed, the candidate will accept. However, this isn’t the end of the journey. Between acceptance of the offer and the candidate starting, there should be regular contact - keeping them up to date with company news, providing information around their onboarding and answering any questions along the way. This will ensure you have a candidate that feels informed, enthused and ready to start!
Unfortunately, not all interview processes end in an offer. It is just as important that this process is managed properly too. A negative experience could put that candidate off for life, but just because they aren’t right at this moment, doesn’t mean they won’t be in the future. Therefore, it is important not to burn those bridges.
Feedback should always:
1. Happen – a sure fire way to leave a sour taste in the candidate’s mouth is to not provide feedback. They have given up their time to meet with you, it’s courtesy to inform them that they haven’t been successful.
2. Be timely – don’t put off giving feedback. Although it’s never a fun part of the job, its important to let the candidate know as soon as possible.
3. Be constructive – feedback should always be succinct but constructive. Give information on what they did well but ultimately let them know why they weren’t successful.
4. Leave the door open – as mentioned, just because they aren’t the right person for the job now, doesn’t mean they won’t be in future. Encourage them to keep an eye on your careers page and reapply to other positions.
When the industry is facing a talent shortage, small steps to ensure the post-interview process is handled correctly can make you stand out from your competitors. Unfortunately, hiring doesn’t always have the outcome you desire, similarly for the candidates. However, treating each situation with a personal touch and understanding will ensure the relationship remains intact for future communications.