What Would You Give for a Personalized Candidate Experience?
I had the good fortune to see several presentations at HCI’s Strategic Talent Conference the week before last, and here’s one of my takeaways: A positive, personalized candidate experience is much more than a nice-to-have these days. It’s become a strategic investment with measurable business impact.
An audience survey during our own client panel is just one point of proof. When we asked recruiters, TA leaders and HR professionals in our audience to rate the importance of a positive candidate experience, the data came back a resounding “5” for high. However, when asked to rate how their organizations are doing with their candidate experience, a majority said “3.” This leads me to believe candidate experience will be a priority for many TA teams in the weeks and months ahead.
As I learned in Cisco Senior Vice President of HR & TA Jill Larsen’s presentation, the candidate experience was an essential factor in what she termed Cisco’s TA Transformation Journey. The journey represents an ongoing effort to align Cisco’s TA team and workforce within a larger initiative to transform its cloud and software business. Cisco has invested significantly in its candidate experience to boost its power as a competitive advantage. Two of the innovative practices Jill employs at Cisco are:
- Using technology to personalize the candidate experience. Cisco’s career site is optimized around user habits and features dynamic content that helps build immediate connection with site visitors when they research Cisco as a potential employer. A similar topic – the consumerization of talent acquisition, came up in another presentation, too. The gap between consumer and employer branding is shrinking. Increasingly, candidates expect their hiring interaction with companies to mirror their interactions as consumers.
- Using Net Promoter Score (NPS) to measure candidate engagement. The idea of adapting NPS to candidate engagement started gaining currency about two years ago, but Cisco actually implemented it in order to put hard numbers to its TA transformation. This practice has been vital in measuring change in the way people view Cisco as a potential employer.
Taking a 360° Perspective on Candidate Experience
In some of the other presentations at HCI, it was clear TA teams are working to improve their candidate experience from many angles. Coaching hiring managers not only to be better interviewers but also to carry the employer brand forward with consistency came up in a few sessions.
So did another topic close to our hearts at Montage: Using technology to humanize the candidate experience. Jill Larsen touched on it. Other presenters did too as they spoke on gamification in hiring, assessments and use of analytics.
During our own session, senior TA leaders from Montage clients Capital One, TIAA and Wyndham Vacation Ownership spoke about the investments their organizations have made to design and deliver a distinctive hiring experience for their candidates. We are of course pleased our own voice and video interviewing technology plays a key role in their work to help candidates feel welcome, interested and excited about working for their organizations. These leaders were generous in sharing their time and insights into their candidate experience strategies and ways they’ve overcome obstacles to their goals.
The video recording of our panel, What You Don’t Know Is Hurting You: How a Poor Candidate Experience Can Dry Up Your Pipeline, will be available for free download soon. We invite you to access this valuable learning by reserving your recording today.