Ask any manager today what the key to business success is and they'll likely say something along the lines of, "Our people." Executive teams know the effectiveness of their employees determines just how far the company can go. And yet, these same leaders often fail to see the vital importance their recruiting process plays in the long-term success of the business. If you don't know how to attract and hire the best talent, you won't achieve your goals. To succeed in recruiting, you should never forget this simple truth...

Recruiting IS Sales

It's a fact. Your recruiting team should be as gifted (if not more so!), as your sales team. Knowing how to target the right candidates, convince them to go through your recruiting process, and accept an offer is not for the weak. The better the recruiter, the better the talent you will hire. That's why every company looking to improve the quality and quantity of employees they hire should take a very close look at their candidate experience.

Candidate Experience = The Courtship

Today, sophisticated job seekers do their homework. Studies show 75% of job seekers will skip applying to your company if you don't have a good reputation as an employer. Unfortunately, their evaluation of you doesn't stop there. The steps you have them go through during the hiring process (a/k/a the candidate experience), will ultimately determine if they'll accept a job with you. A good candidate experience could lead to a new hire. Conversely, a bad candidate experience can lead to them turning down your job offer, telling other people not to bother applying, and depending on what you sell, even result in them telling friends and family not to invest in your products or services. Companies like Richard Branson's Virgin Media have learned the hard way that a lame hiring process can cost you millions. In short, failing to evaluate and improve your candidate experience could be costing your company more than just good talent - it could be costing you customers.

Consider This Daily Activity As Proof

To prove the importance of candidate experience, the team at PhCreative created this short video. In it, you see how the typical candidate experience job seekers endure would be an epic fail if applied to the simply daily activity of ordering a coffee.

Ask any job seeker today what their number one pet peeve is with respect to employers and they'll tell you it's the candidate experience. Especially top talent, which specifically seeks out an employer who will act like their business partner. Why? They want to work WITH you, not for you.

First To A Better Candidate Experience Is...

If your company is struggling to find better talent, your first step should be assessing the sophistication level of your recruiting efforts. Today, outdated 'spay-and-pray' methods of posting job descriptions on multiple job boards and slogging through hundreds of applications is ineffective from both a cost and time perspective. Understanding the new rules to recruiting and building a candidate experience that supports your company's goals will provide a much better result. Otherwise, you can expect recruiting to get harder and harder for your company as it continues to lag behind with the times.