Respectful, until the very end

In days characterized by keywords such as “shortage of specialists” and the importance of “candidate experience” in which the most talented employees are not actively looking, but rather have to be won, it still astounds me that many colleagues in the field of recruitment drop their good manners as soon as a candidate does not fit their current search profile or worse, has been added to their databases.

The end of each search or project is first and foremost a time to celebrate. The customer is satisfied with the work and happy to have found the “perfect” employee ready to elevate their products to the next level. The chosen candidate is happy because he has a new challenge, perspective and found a new home at a new company. However, before the project is truly over there is still the task of informing all the candidates and applicants who did not get the job.

Just two days ago, I had this duty on my desk and even though it is never a pleasant task I consider it not only “good employer branding” or “investment for the future, maybe you need this candidate in another project” as I read in a blog covering this same topic a couple of years ago. I simply consider it normal human decency to inform a person of a closed door, so he does not rely and hopes for it, maybe even forfeiting other chances while waiting for a reply that never comes.

Even though it happens almost every project, it still surprises me when I open my email the next day to find a number of replies, even thank you emails expressing their gratitude for the update and that it is very uncommon to get feedback at the end of the process if they were not the ones hired.

For me a good candidate experience starts with a swift process, fast and personalized acknowledgement of receipt, arks over a respectful selection process and constant involvement as well as feedback for candidates advancing but also dropping out of the process and it only ends after the contract has been signed and everyone has been informed about the outcome.

I would wish to get fewer and fewer thank you emails indicating that all recruiters keep their good behavior up until the very end and see their hundreds of contacts not as a number, but remember the people behind the CV’s. But sadly, number of thank you mails for rejection is increasing ..

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