Candidate feedback - and why it's important

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Candidate feedback - and why it's important

We often hear complaints from candidates about lack of post-interview feedback, even when they felt that the interview had gone well. Sometimes, it even happens after a second stage when a candidate has invested time and resource in preparing a case study or presentation. You would think that if someone has gone to the trouble of preparing for an interview - researching, taking time off, travelling (or finding a meeting room during the working day) - the least they could expect is a 'Thanks, but no thanks', but all too often, this just doesn't happen.

So why, in a people-centred function such as recruitment, has the human touch disappeared? Is everyone too busy? Has feedback become an optional extra? Absolutely not! As recruiters, we see the impact this has on candidates on a daily basis, and frequently find ourselves making excuses for the client, but the truth is, ghosting can have a detrimental effect on your company, too. We regularly hear complaints about repeat offenders and it starts to build a picture of a culture which belies the people-centred, collaborative ethos that they are all to keen to boast about.  

There are many reasons why feedback is overlooked - time, miscommunication, reluctance to give a negative message, and often it's not a conscious thing, but it really should be. Ensure that you take brief notes in every interview so you don't forget people and once you've met everyone, let unsuccessful candidates down as soon as possible, either directly or via your recruitment partner. In the time it takes to write an email with a quick summary of positives and negatives (always include both!), a candidate could have jumped on Glassdoor and told the world about their negative experience, so make sure you make it a priority to say thank you, and to wish them well in their next move.

People remember those small kindnesses and even if they didn't get the job, their perception of your company remains positive.