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Keeping Candidates Engaged During The Recruitment Process

Posted on: 17 Dec 2018

Want to boost long-term prospects for your new hires and the business? This guide will help.

Learn how to keep your candidates engaged and informed from the moment they secure an interview to their first day at work.

Achieve this using our tips and create a more enjoyable and comfortable onboarding experience for top talent.

Update, Update, Update

Your time is precious, and it may seem like sending an email or picking up the phone to update your candidate isn’t time well spent.

Not true. Updates set the tone for future engagement. If you don’t keep them in the loop, this can cultivate resentment – not a great start to a new working relationship.

Candidates have to organise their lives too. After a successful interview, they need to know exactly when they’re starting, what they need to bring on their first day, how to access the office and any other essential information.

Not only does this minimise anxiety but it sends the message that you’re an organised and reliable company to work for, boosting their enthusiasm.

Also, by preparing candidates for the job as early as possible, you can ensure they come into the role with a strong understanding of the business.

This way, they can hit the ground running, increasing their productivity from day one. Share strategy documents and past reports and consider asking for their ideas to increase their involvement.

A “Welcome” Treat

“A new hire isn’t a surprise visitor from out of town. Plan for their arrival.” – Jay Samit, Independent Vice Chairman of Deloitte

Get creative with a fun welcome pack and your candidate will be buzzing for their first day.

Also, make your new hire feel valued before they start work by including personalised gifts in your pack. Branded items reinforce your company image, setting you apart from other employers. This could be:

  • A water bottle or mug with the candidate’s name on
  • A notepad
  • A pen
  • A welcome card signed by the team
  • Vouchers for food at a local restaurant
  • A relevant industry book

For welcome pack inspiration, check out this beauty from Ogilvy & Mather.It sends a clear message about who the company is and why working for them is an exciting prospect – follow their lead to deliver an unforgettable first impression.

Tech to Get Them Up and Running

There’s nothing worse than starting a new role only to be planted at a desk with nothing to do.

This happens when the business hasn’t taken the time to set up the right tech before the candidate starts. Nor have they enabled access to the correct folders and software for work to commence.

Some businesses even neglect to set up laptops and phones, making a candidate’s first day truly pointless!

Make it your priority to get your new hire fully operational from day one so they don’t spend their time clock-watching.

At the bare minimum, ensure their email and telephone line is set up properly and that they have all the passwords and usernames needed to access their work.

Cultivate a Sense of Belonging

“Onboarding starts with satisfying the most basic of Maslow’s psychological needs: belonging,” says Jay Samit. Just as eating gives us energy, belonging gives us an identity.

This is why candidates can get anxious about working with new people. They wonder: “Will they like me?” or “Will they be my kind of people?”.

Quell these fears by connecting your new hire to your team before they start work. Think of a fresh and creative way to pass on a welcome message from everyone in the business.

For example, you could send your candidate a couple of questions in an email to get an idea of who they really are. Questions such as:

  • Where is your favourite holiday destination?
  • Do you have any pets?

Feature their answers plus a profile picture in a introductory email to the whole team. Encourage your current employees to introduce themselves through email to break the ice and boost team spirit.

Moreover, once your new hire has started, there will probably be a week or two of introductory meetings with key people. Consider sharing a calendar containing these appointments so the candidate knows exactly what’s happening and when.

You could even go the extra mile and send over a full agenda of the first couple of weeks. This way, the new hire knows exactly what’s expected of them and how they will slot into the team, helping settle any nerves.

Become a Smooth Operator with Tech

At the time of writing, the UK’s overall employment rate is at 75.7%, a new record high. Finding good candidates is becoming increasingly difficult.

How you communicate with candidates is imperative. It sets the tone for future engagement and encourages them to accept the job offer.

Keep an easy, open dialogue between you and them to hold onto top talent.

Microsoft Teams can help you achieve this. It’s is a brilliant platform for:

  • Starting the onboarding process
  • Making communication seamless
  • Bringing teams together

You can create individual chat rooms for every team. They can easily talk (emoji and gif style) and share images, articles or company documents in the group.

If your candidate has a webcam, holding video-conferences is a snazzy way to strengthen introductions and engage them more with the business.

Also, consider using Instagram Stories to give your candidate a taste of office life. This is a great way to express your brand and its culture to a prospective employee – getting them to buy in before starting work.

It’s in Your Favour Too!

This is an exciting time for your candidate – the beginning of a new chapter in their lives. Make the experience amazing through expertly executed engagement and you’ll:

  • Make a fantastic first impression
  • Ensure the candidate is happy and excited about their new job
  • Send the message that you’re a great company to work for
  • Boost productivity from day one
  • Increase the length of their employment
  • Save money on recruitment fees

Does your candidate have leadership potential? Read this and find out how to help them unleash their potential to drive the business to dizzying heights.

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