Written by:
Tim Farmer

Why measuring the candidate journey makes common and commercial sense

The cost of a poor hire ranges from £8,000 up to £50,000, depending on what research you read. Whichever figure you think best applies to your business, there is a financial argument for ensuring your recruitment process is doing all it can to deliver a successful hire.

Only the best recruitment experiences can lead the top talent to your business. If candidates feel like you’re delivering a sub-standard experience, or one that is out of line with the consumer experience of your brand, they are less likely to jump at the chance of working for you.

But it gets worse; a poor candidate experience might put them off your brand as a consumer too. A very costly by-product. If we know that candidates now behave like consumers isn’t it time you start treating them like consumers too?

Marketing Week recently reported a great case study. In 2014, Virgin Media was reported to have lost £4.4m due to poor candidate experiences. That may seem like pretty steep figure, but 18% of the 130,000 candidates that applied to work for them that year were existing Virgin Media customers. Of those 23,000 customers/candidates, 7,500 saw reason to cancel their subscriptions and switch to a competitor having been left disappointed with the firm’s recruitment process.

To Virgin Media’s credit, it was quick to recognise the error of its ways and overhaul its recruitment processes. Part of that overhaul was an investment in technology with a candidate portal that maps the recruitment experience. It looks at how candidates are going about their application process and explores what they want, rather than Virgin Media leading the journey.

Candidate journey mapping

Like many in the industry, we reckon candidate journey mapping will become as common as customer journey mapping in time. Admittedly though, it’s taking longer than expected to happen.

Brands don’t think twice about improving the customer experience, based on how customers are interacting with their touchpoints. Yet, they are not deploying the same tactics on the people that they employ (and more importantly don’t employ) to serve their cherished customers. It doesn’t quite add up.

It seems that brands know the benefits of measuring and mapping the candidate experience, but aren’t always so sure on exactly how they can measure it and more importantly how they can improve the journey.

Value of insight

As is the case with all business decisions, it comes down to having the appropriate insight. Through some clever questioning, we believe that you can start to build up an understanding of what research candidates are doing prior to applying for a position at your business, which social / web channels they’re using to do it, and the impression of your organisation they are being left with.

You can also get some insight into what candidates make of the recruitment experience you are providing, from the initial application through to the post-interview feedback, and how it has impacted their perception of your brand.

This might all sound straightforward enough, but the trick is getting candidates to offer their opinions rather than just move straight on to the next application.

So this all sounds great in theory, but in practice it can be easier said than done. That’s where Revoco comes in – we capture candidate journey insights as part of our normal recruitment process for our clients. And through our Strategic Talent Acquisition consultancy, we can work with you to ensure you deliver a recruitment experience that will make you stand out, attract, and hire more of the right people and eliminate whatever the “true” cost of poor hiring might be.


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