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How To Meet Candidate Expectations

Candidate expectations have become increasingly important within recruitment. Whilst previously many hiring professionals viewed their industry as an employer-driven market, it can now be argued that a shift in focus has lead to hiring strategies becoming increasingly more candidate led.

This is because the candidate’s needs are recognised as a priority in building a strong relationship with the recruiter or potential employer, to make great hires.

Unfortunately, when hiring teams fail to meet candidate expectations issues can arise in terms of; a damaged reputation, an increase in candidate dropout and an overall difficulty in retaining top talent. All of which most hiring teams will strive to avoid.

Here are our top four suggestions to help meet candidate expectations in an ever-growing candidate-focused industry:

Candidates expect…

A reasonable time to hire

Does the time it take to hire, match up to candidate expectations? The longer it takes the greater the risk of candidate dropout or overall frustrations in relation to the hiring process.

To meet candidate expectancy, speed up the hiring process. for example research shows, almost a quarter of candidates lose interest in an organisation if they don’t hear back within one week. Which consequently will only rise the longer they have to wait to hear back from an interview. Keep a job hopeful engaged and informed on the status of their application, to discourage them from abandoning their application and pursuing other roles.

Candidate led experiences

Often when employers and agencies manage a high volume recruitment strategy, it’s difficult to manually reply to every unsuccessful candidate. Likewise, the lack of response can also feel frustrating for the job seeker and be damaging to the hiring company’s brand reputation.

How to meet candidate expectations

Job seekers want to be treated as a priority. They expect some form of acknowledgement and support throughout their recruitment experience, whether they are successful or not. A personalised hiring experience can make all the difference. Personalised job recommendations, increased engagement and consistent communication all enable candidates to feel respected and valued as an individual job seeker. Whilst this does not always have to be face-to-face interactions, technology provides lots of opportunities to engage with candidates via; messaging, video chats and automated job updates.

Equal treatment

All job applicants deserve the same equal treatment. Without hesitation or second-guessing, job hopefuls expect their application to be reviewed fairly. Their interview is to be judged on their performance and their overall role fit to be based on justifications that are relevant to the position.

This means, disregarding bias, (unconscious or intentional), prejudice and unrelated factors out of the candidate’s control to not have an impact on the final hiring decision. This should be standard for all hiring teams.


To build trust and meet candidate expectations it is essential to offer transparency. If doubts are formed in regards to the hiring company, candidates will become reluctant to continue their application or even accept the ultimate job offer. Therefore it’s important to provide clear hiring guidelines, role information and a true representation of the organisation.

This is because, in a society where online reviews have the power to discredit a company’s reputation, employees can readily access any information they require if they experience doubts.

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