• The ongoing “war for talent” in the labor market has prompted HR Professionals to level up recruitment strategies by improving candidate experience.
  • Organizations that focus on improving their candidate experience are more likely to engage, attract, and connect with top candidates.
  • Companies need to ramp up strategies designed to personalize the candidate’s experience.


The competitive labor market over the past decade has led to new hiring trends that made an impact on recruitment agencies in Vietnam and all over the world. Talent shortages are also increasing the time to fill in open vacancies. 

According to industry insights report by Human Capital Media, the average time to fill an open position has doubled since 2010. Thus, creating an extremely competitive landscape for recruitment firms. 

HR Professionals are now polishing their recruitment tactics to focus on strategies that will leverage data, personalization, on-demand sourcing, and the overall candidate experience.

“It doesn’t matter what industry our clients are in—everything from manufacturing to professional services and retail—every company can now be classified as a technology company,” said Byrne Mulrooney, the CEO of Futurestep, a Korn Ferry company that provides recruitment process outsourcing solutions. 

“This has forever changed the way talent acquisition experts do their jobs and what candidates have come to expect,” he added. 


Going beyond traditional recruitment

Progressive organizations are now deploying the solutions to strategically improve their candidate experience and enhance their employer branding at the same time. 

Organizations that focus on improving their candidate experience are more likely to engage, attract, and connect with top candidates. Consequently, they are also able to bring more visibility to their employer brand. When candidates feel connected to organizations, their attitudes and behaviors towards the firm become more positive. This is why it is crucial to guarantee that a candidate’s selection process remains positive. 

A 2017 study of applicant reactions showed that when candidates have an adverse reaction to the selection process they are more likely to – report lower levels of organizational attractiveness, lessen intentions to recommend the company to others, and even reduce the likelihood to accept a job offer.

These findings can have severe implications as demonstrated by the following statistics:

  • Career Arc reported that 72% of candidates who have had a bad experience had shared it online through an employer review site, a social networking site, or directly with a colleague or friend.
  • CareerBuilder showed that 42% of candidates who were dissatisfied with their experience would never seek employment at that company again.

The Real Cost of Poor Reputation

  • A LinkedIn report mentioned that the cost of having a bad company reputation is as much as $7.6 million for a company with 10,000 employees.


Moving forward with candidate experience

There is no doubt that ensuring a positive candidate experience is essential to the attraction and retention of top talent. Candidate experience is slowly becoming the chief differentiator for companies and their competitors.

Companies need to ramp up strategies designed to personalize the candidate’s experience. Today’s candidates are more informed and connected. As such, they will not hesitate to talk about their negative hiring experience with their peers on social networks.

Top candidates are expecting your organization to have higher levels of communication, more responsiveness, and of course, a more efficient application process. Recruiter.com has revealed several key elements to consider when it comes to creating the ideal candidate experience:


Time sensitivity 

Organizations need to make the hiring process quick and efficient for the candidates. They should be able to feel like their job application matters to your company. When the candidate filled out their initial job application, they should not wait three weeks before you get back to them and schedule an interview. 

It would help if your recruiters set regular deadlines for the candidates of each job application. Make sure that those deadlines are met to keep the hiring process as efficient as possible. 



Always keep candidates informed about the status of their application. Your job applicants should never be left out in the dark. Never let them wonder what will happen next. The usual “thank you and we’ll keep in touch” email doesn’t cut it anymore. 

Your recruitment team needs to be proactive enough to give your candidates updates on their application process. Instead of the usual thank you email, make it more personalized and let them know when exactly they can hear from you. It’s better to say something like, “We’ll be in touch within three business days to give you an update on the status of your application.” 



The whole application process should be seamless for the candidates. Organizations should enable an easy application process from the moment that they decide to submit their resume on a job board or your company’s career site. If you ask your applicant to upload a CV and cover letter, don’t let them fill out a long application form anymore. 

Remember that there are top candidates out there who may be interested in the vacancy but are on the fence when it comes to changing jobs. A lengthy application process with your company will only further convince them that it will not be worth the effort to try out for the job anymore.


Tips to Create an Excellent Candidate Experience

A Forbes article mentioned several tips when it comes to creating an excellent candidate experience strategy for organizations:


  • Put yourselves in the job seeker’s shoes.

All of us had been young job seekers fresh out of school at some point in our careers. When your organization finally makes improvements on your hiring process, make sure that you prioritize candidate experience first. While hiring is all about fulfilling the vacancy of your company, it’s also essential to view the hiring process in the candidate’s point of view. 

Your entire recruitment process will be more successful if you have a clear understanding of the application process from the perspective of the applicant. You can test out your hiring strategy by having a team member apply in a job vacancy and play the role of an applicant to try out the entire process. 


  • Don’t forget to communicate.

One of the most critical jobs of a recruiter is to help the applicant understand the entire hiring process of your organization. Tell them what to expect in each step and make sure that you keep your lines open for any queries that they may have. 

Make them feel that you are not wasting their time by replying promptly to their emails and messages. It will also help if your recruitment team has a single contact person for candidates who apply to a specific vacancy. This will ensure that all follow-ups and requests are being relayed properly to the candidate. 


  • Bring employees in the process. 


Ideally, you want your new hire to fit right into the culture of your organization. The most effective way to do that is to directly seek the opinions of your employees when you craft your new hiring strategy. A fresh pair of eyes who had experienced the whole hiring process before can provide valuable insights to your revamped recruitment process.

Consequently, you might also want to consider having top candidates meet their future teammates beforehand. This will help the recruiter gauge the dynamics of the fit of the candidate in the workplace culture of your organization. 


  • Personalize the recruitment process for the candidates. 

There will never be a “one size fits all” recruitment strategy. The hiring process must have an inherent flexibility with no rigid rules that will back the recruiters in a corner. The last thing you wish to happen is to scare away top talent due to the organization’s bureaucratic processes. 

Make the recruitment process more personalized. Let your candidates be engaged enough to make them feel excited about working for you in the future. Thus, their first point of contact with your recruiter should be a great experience already. Tell your recruiters to stop sending generic emails to candidates when you schedule an interview. Give the applicants a warm welcome when you finally get to meet them. 


  • Seek honest feedback. 

Your hiring process needs to be improved every so often. This is why seeking feedback from candidates is invaluable. Remember to seek feedback from candidates that you have hired and also those who didn’t make the cut. 

Listen to what you’re applicants are saying. Take those suggestions to heart and respond accordingly by making changes to the hiring process if necessary. 


Let us help you improve your firm’s candidate experience. 

Curran Daly + Associates is an executive search firm that has a wide network of top talent in the market because of the quality of our engagements with candidates. We are here to assist your organization adapt to the ever-changing labor market. As one of the top recruitment agencies in Vietnam, we are here to help you find the best talent for the right role, in the most efficient timeframe possible.

Partner with us and work with one of the most trusted retained executive search firms in Asia and the Pacific. Contact us now!



3 Ways to Create an Ideal Candidate Experience. (2019). Recruiter. Retrieved 30 April 2019, from https://www.recruiter.com/i/3-ways-to-create-an-ideal-candidate-experience/

5 Tips For A Winning Candidate Experience. (2019). Forbes.com. Retrieved 30 April 2019, from https://www.forbes.com/sites/meghanbiro/2013/12/08/5-tips-for-a-winning-candidate-experience/

McCarthy, J. M., Bauer, T. N., Truxillo, D. M., Campion, M. C., Van Iddekinge, C. H., & Campion, M. A. (2018). Improving the Candidate Experience. Organizational Dynamics.doi:10.1016/j.orgdyn.2018.05.004

Maurer, R. (2017). Strategic Talent Sourcing. HR Magazine, 62(4), 70–71. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.upd.edu.ph/login.aspx?direct=true&db=bsu&AN=122866143&site=ehost-live

Orler, E. (2014). Improving the Online Candidate Experience. Talent Management, 10(5), 44–46. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.upd.edu.ph/login.aspx?direct=true&db=bsu&AN=95909373&site=ehost-live

Sapp, A. (2018). Beyond Onboarding. Workforce, 97(6), 36–37. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.upd.edu.ph/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=132504126&site=ehost-live

Tech Tools Elevate Sourcing. (2017). SHRM. Retrieved 2 May 2019, from https://www.shrm.org/hr-today/news/hr-magazine/0517/pages/tech-tools-elevate-sourcing.aspx


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