identified, the candidate is evaluated, interviewed, paperwork completed and
presented to the client. Client interviews the candidate and both; the job
seeker and more so the recruiter wait anxiously to hear back. If the response
is positive then it is a win-win situation for all; if not then the cycle
continues for the recruiter.
it is here that the recruiters fail. They fail in meeting the candidate’s
expectations. They fail in building a relationship. They fail in understanding
why giving even negative feedback is important. They do not realize that just
as they wait eagerly to hear back from the client so does the candidate. When
there is no response, most interviewees do assume that they have not been
selected but amongst them there are many who would like to understand the
reasons so that they can improve in future.
“Candidates need to
understand how they can improve,” says Laurie West, talent acquisition manager
at Exchange Team. “People’s own ideas about how they think they are perceived
and how they actually are perceived in interviews can differ greatly, and it’s
all about closing that gap”.
should realize that giving negative feedback to help candidates improve will
work in their favor too. Apart from creating a positive
impression about their company and building relationships, they will also have
a better prepared applicant for the next interview should they present to
why is it that recruiters do not give feedback? And how should they do it?
don’t know how to give negative feedback
job applicant wants to hear good news about landing a job. But for some reason
is not selected by the client. Don’t they need to know that? And don’t they
need to know the reasons?
bad news doesn’t come naturally to anyone. It requires effort. But
recruiter-applicant relationship is not a personal one – it is professional so
a recruiter is expected to exhibit professionalism in such situations. Yet,
most of them are uncomfortable doing this task and that is understandable but
it has to be done.
way is by converting it to something positive. For example –“client felt you
are strong in back-end web development but at this time they are looking for a
strong UX developer/designer. I will continue to look for other opportunities
for you and let’s keep in touch.”
are uncertain of candidate’s reaction
likes to hear bad news and different people react differently to unfavorable
fear of the type of reaction they may get keeps them from even contacting the
candidate. This definitely is a bad policy. Some applicants may not care about
the feedback but some may and it is likely that they may be satisfied just
hearing back. It is a kind of closure and end to wondering.
recruiters are busy and may not have time to call but sending an email will
reap benefits in future. Create a template that can be customized easily.
do not get feedback
hiring managers do not provide enough information to recruiters. Sometimes,
employers keep the decision pending for a long time due to various reasons but
most of the time, reasons for not selecting an applicant are not given.
efforts by the recruiter to understand the reasons for rejecting a candidate,
the hiring manager provides a cryptic response. In such situations, a recruiter
is not in a position to provide additional information to the job seeker.
it is recruiter’s responsibility to be honest and communicate what they have
learned from the client.
recruiters do not understand the importance
are some who just do not understand the importance of providing feedback to
candidates. It is a matter of putting themselves in the shoes of the job
seekers. As soon as they do that, they are bound to understand and contact
their interviewees with whom they would have had several conversations before
presenting to the hiring manager. It is the responsibility of the company to
set policies regarding this because that will also speak to their
professionalism as a company.
who decide to contact candidates with unpleasant news should do so as soon they
hear back from the client. Candidates are sure to appreciate that as they are
not left in a limbo. Honesty is the best policy when providing additional
information if asked by candidate. Thank the job seekers for their time and
interest and do not elaborate on their weaknesses or shortcomings. Provide that
feedback professionally and briefly. Most candidates are likely to understand
without being told the details.
forget, recruiting is all about building relationships with both clients and
candidates. In this time of referral recruiting, relationships and
professionalism take on even more importance. Providing feedback is one more
step towards building relationships.