Plenty of resources will tell you that onboarding is your first opportunity to make a great impression on your new hires. They’re wrong.
You are in fierce competition with other employers across the US to land the best and brightest talent. For a leg up, consider the recruitment and pre-boarding process your first opportunity for a great impression. Rather than waiting until the onboarding process begins, focus on the candidate experience to showcase early on why your company is the best choice.
There are plenty of touchpoints you can leverage to showcase your organization’s strengths. From the moment a potential new hire discovers your open position to their experience applying for the job, interviewing, and accepting the job offer, each touchpoint presents an opportunity for you to make the experience exceptional. This critical period, one could argue, is even more important than the onboarding experience, because at any point a competing employer, or in some cases their current employer, could sway your candidate to forego an opportunity with your organization.
Let’s consider a few of these touchpoints and see how your organization’s experience for applicants and new recruits stacks up.
Does your online presence create excitement?
The best candidates will research your organization before they accept a job offer or even an interview. What they see should communicate what it is that sets your organization apart from the rest.
Perhaps your organizational culture is top-notch, you employ some of the most brilliant minds in the industry, or you are renowned for groundbreaking medical research and advances. For ideas on of what sets you apart, try engaging with current employees about why they chose to work for your organization. Whatever your value proposition for your candidates is, you want your candidates to see you online and think this is my first choice.
Your “About” or “Careers” page is a great place to shine. Try warm, inviting photos of your staff members and campus, or at least your key leadership. Don’t be afraid to show a little personality. Case studies and employee accolades are great content pieces that engage candidates. Explicitly state what makes you different than other employers in your area. Give something for your candidates to look forward to.
Are you communicating well and often throughout the entire process?
How you treat candidates during their recruitment and pre-boarding process is an indication of how they can expect to be treated as an employee and colleague.
The best way to make your candidates feel welcome is by removing ambiguity and fear of the unknown. Set clear expectations and next steps so there’s never a question of what am I missing or why haven’t I heard anything. Remember, applying for a new job can be stressful. The better you communicate, the more they’ll feel at ease with you and positive about your organization.
Additionally, there tends to be a lag between your new employee signing his or her employment contract and their start date, ranging from weeks to months in some instances. This lag isn’t the time for silence. Instead, put a reminder in your calendar to touch base with your new hire every 2-3 weeks. It doesn’t have to be a long conversation, but it should be enough to communicate that you’re still excited to have them come on board with your organization.
Are you making their to-do list simple to get done?
The technology you use for pre-hire tasks, like submitting applications and required licenses, is very telling to candidates. If the software applications you leverage look as though they haven’t had a facelift since the 1990’s, it’s safe to assume that the technology the candidates can expect to work with every day is just as antiquated. This may or may not be the case, but it can be difficult to rebound from that once a candidate’s first look behind the curtain is tarnished.
We are in an age where people expect technology to be convenient, easy, and reliable. Now, there are technologies that provide a delightful experience for the pre-hire to-do list. If your technology doesn’t fit the bill, it’s important to find out why and begin researching alternatives. And if you’re questioning whether you’d be able to get leadership buy-in to adopt better technology, here are a few reasons why you deserve it (even if it’s for internal-use only).
Of course, every candidate is different in how they expect to be treated. Universally, it’s safe to assume that everyone appreciates clear communication and simplified processes. Take some time to examine your recruitment and pre-boarding process and you may find some opportunities for improvement. Ultimately, that experience could be what sets your organization apart, attracting the best and the brightest applicants.
If you’re in need of a better way to gather license information from your applicants and employees, EverCheck can help. We’ve automated the process for Human Resources and Recruitment professionals and created a seamless, user-centric experience.
Contact us today to learn more.