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10 hiring practices that you might be doing to annoy the job seeker

10 hiring practices that you might be doing to annoy the job seeker

The job market is not always nice and welcoming to the job seeker. Competition is tough, quality employers are receiving tons amount of applications, and other job candidates are getting more and more creative in how they express interest in a company. But the job market isn’t the only thing that is frustrating for the job seeker.  Some businesses are still making the same mistakes that annoy job seekers throughout the hiring process, and as a result, talented people may go with a different company. In the last couple months at SmartRecruiters, I’ve conducted interviews with several job seekers and have been able to pin point the main frustrations they have had.

So if you’re hiring, here are 10 hiring practices that you might be doing to annoy the job seeker:

1. Tedious, lengthy job applications

Ditch the hour long job application. Job seekers don’t have time to spend over an hour on a job application. In the day and age of storing information on LinkedIn and Facebook, nobody wants to upload a resume, then re-enter everything on that resume, followed by dozens of questions, followed by an online questionnaire that repeats the same questions over and over. Keep it simple.

2. Inaccurate job description

An inaccurate job description wastes not only your time, but also the candidate’s.  Fluffing up the position to increase your candidate pool may give you more job seekers to interview, but once they learn more about the position, they’ll see right through that false job application and your brand will be damaged.

3. A website from the 90s

When a candidate is researching your company, they’re going to check out your website. An outdated, slow, ugly website reflects poorly on your company.  If the graphics are outdated and content are outdated, the candidate will be less prepared and less enthused.

4. No social media page

A website is good for checking out the history and general information about the company, but social media gives them insight into your company culture and values. Not having a Facebook company page or LinkedIn company page is a perfect way to brand your company. Candidates want to see how it will be to work in your company, and social media can show just that. If you lack any sort of social media, your company is failing to brand itself, and is frustrating for the candidate.

5. Long Cover Letter

I’ve already expressed interest in your job, given you my professional information, and now you want me to write a mini essay to relate my interest to my professional information?

 

6. No application confirmation email

Did you get my job application? If so, let me know. This is common courtesy and any decent recruiting software should have the option to automate this confirmation message.

7. Cold calling the candidate for a phone interview

What if you call the candidate when they’re at work, or on a bus, or down in a subway tunnel? It’s both convenient and efficient to email the candidate, set up a time for a phone interview, and let the candidate prepare for your first conversation. Phone tag is never fun.

8.Unprepared interviewers

The job candidate is well prepared for the interview, so it’s disappointing when the interviewer isn’t.  Whether the interviewer doesn’t know about the position or doesn’t know you’re coming, if the interviewer can’t answer your questions, it looks bad on the company.

9. Substitute interviewer

It’s even worse when the interviewer cancels last minute, and you’re stuck interviewing with some substitute who knows little of the position or even department. They’ll just ask you some basic questions, and hopefully report to who you were actually supposed to talk to.

10. No contact after interview

Nobody likes to be left in the dark, so after the interview, it’s important to let the candidate know whether they got the job or not.  A human response goes a long way, rather than having to contact the interviewer, only to find out someone else already got hired.

The bottom line is, Stop Annoying Candidates!  Hiring practices that cater to the candidate’s preference will attract better candidates.  If you make the mistakes above, you’re going to lose out on qualified candidates.  The hiring process is the first interaction most job seekers have with your company, and a bad first impression will deplete your talent pool and your overall brand.

Joe Hanson, the @TheJobChaser, is a blogging intern with SmartRecruiters.

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4 comments

  1. Great tipps. Thanks Bob.

    Cheers from Germany

    Hansjörg

    http://www.der-bank-blog.de

  2. I think your point #2 is crucial for getting quality responses to you job posting. If someone knows exactly what they’re expected to do on the job, they will be more confident about being able to perform and will apply with a strong cover letter. While searching, I often see descriptions that are either too brief or on the other end – too long but saying nothing about the exact functional responsibilities. I apply to those if the company has good rep, but I don’t put much into my cover letter – if the hiring manager or HR just copied and pasted or spent 5 min on the posting, why should I spend an hour on the application?

  3. Good stuff! Such practices, as described, can make a prospective employee feel that perhaps this is not the organization to work with, that bureaucracy rules the day and the company is either slow to adapt or disorganized.

  4. When I am clear that the candidate is not a fit, I always just tell them in the interview. By providing a bit of that feedback in the interview, I also let the candidate know where I saw the gap between them & the position. That allows them to defend if I have misunderstood or improve for their next opportunity.

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