Treat Your Job Applicants the Way You Would Treat Your Best Customers


Job searches can be difficult and often frustrating. Faced with enough rejection, even the most confident of applicants could feel discouraged and even resentful. As a potential employer, your reputation is affected by candidates and how they characterize you or their experiences with your company on social media.

Here are three ways you can make interacting with your company a positive experience for applicants, even if they don’t get hired:

Keep Them Informed

While it might be a tall order to write a detailed letter to every single person who sent in a job application, consider calling or writing a brief note to those you have interviewed face-to-face but won’t be hiring. Many applicants never hear the outcome of a job they have been pursuing, and will appreciate your making the effort to give them closure.

Personalize Your Message

Taking a few minutes to add details that transform an impersonal form letter into a gracious message can mean the difference between a loyal fan and someone who sour grapes about your company. This is particularly true for candidates who felt they connected with the interviewers and that they were good fits. The ones who feel most buoyant and excited following a job interview are understandably the ones who will feel the most disappointed about not being hired. Use their names, thank them for something specific such as being so engaging or so animated and passionate about their interests, and if you mean it, encourage them to apply for other suitable company openings

End on a High Note

In any interaction, people tend to most remember the last emotion they felt. It’s important to work towards getting a smile at the end of your interaction with candidates you don’t hire. Whether it’s by phone or a letter, wish them well in their job search and other future endeavors. If your company offers retail products and services, consider giving them a small savings voucher or code. If you are part of a network of recruiters and know of an opportunity that could be a match, direct them to it so that they don’t feel as though they have come to a dead end and can instead continue to move forward. With job searches being much more competitive now, taking the time to end on a high note goes a long way to conveying that you and your company care, and are appreciative of their application.

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