recruitment tips

Why Customer Service Should Extend to Your Hiring Processes

Customer service is at the heart of effective recruitment, yet it is one of the most overlooked elements by employers. Here is how you can easily boost your quality hires through clear and honest communication, and why it is so vital to recruitment.

The foundations of successful hiring lie in reliable and trusted relationships formed between employer and candidate, so it’s important to see your candidates and applicants as customers. This means being a strong and efficient communicator, being understanding of candidates’ needs and guiding where you can.

When needing to fill positions quickly, it can be easy to brush over the need for strong communication. But ultimately, providing great customer service is a simple yet extremely effective way to increase your pool of quality candidates and make stronger hires. Here’s why and how.

A good impression attracts loyal candidates

It’s vital to remember that when communicating with a candidate or applicant, you are representing your brand. This is the brand which you are seeking to secure the best talent for, so impressions really do matter. Not only does this convince candidates you are a trusted and ideal employer to work for, but it is important for maintaining your brand image. What may not be a relationship now could be one down the line.

A study from Zendesk found that nearly three out of five consumers report that good customer service is vital for them to feel loyalty toward a brand. The best recruits are those who are loyal and proud of the brand they work for, and good customer service is an easy way to give them a reason to be.

Download the Placed App, set up a profile and start matching with the best talent, today.

Poor customer service influences others

Even if you choose not to hire an applicant, the way you interact with them can have a long-lasting impact.

Candidates are quick to write reviews and spread the word, particularly if they’ve had a bad experience. A well-reputed brand brings in well-reputed candidates, and vice versa. So if you want to attract quality candidates, keep this in mind when communicating.

According to Glassdoor, 11% of job seekers said they would decline a job offer from an employer with a bad reputation – even if they were unemployed. Reputation matters, and the way you hire can affect this greatly.

So, what is poor customer service in recruitment? 

Essentially, this lies in how you communicate. At Placed, we regularly host panels where we speak to real job seekers to learn more about what they need. Our panels revealed that the top pain points for candidates are not hearing back, waiting too long to hear back, long-winded application processes, unclear or false job listings, and not being honest about salary. These all contribute to a negative brand impression.

So, how do I ensure good customer service?

Good customer service is about being timely, attentive and honest. Put yourself in a job seeker’s shoes and question whether you’d be happy with the dialogue you are creating. As we always say – great recruitment is a conversation, not a transaction.

Remember, you’re up against other employers , particularly if you’re hiring for in-demand positions such as those within the service sector. Here’s how you can utilise good customer service to put yourself above the competition.

Understand your candidates’ needs

Candidates need to know as much about your brand as possible before committing to an application let alone a job offer. According to a survey by Careerbuilder, after finding a job opening, 64% of candidates said they research a company online and 37% said they will move on to another job opening if they can’t find information on the company.

How you portray your company is important. So be clear and engaging. Tell the story of your brand! The more questions you answer before a candidate even applies, the less room you leave for ambiguity later down the line, and the more likely you attract well-suited candidates who feel confident in your business.

Employers using Placed have their own dedicated brand page where they can feature pictures, videos, testimonials, quizzes and more, to paint a clear picture of their workplace and truly showcase their values and culture.

Be responsive

The best customer experiences always involve speedy and clear communication. This means telling the candidate exactly what to expect. You can do this by writing clear and informative job descriptions, being upfront about salary early on, responding swiftly after an interview or stating when a candidate will hear back, and being there to answer any questions they may have.

Understandably, this can be a challenging feat when you have a vast number of applicants or roles to fill. But, with so many candidates frustrated at employers ghosting them, a little goes a long way. And there are certainly ways you can be responsive even when you’re dealing with many candidates, such as setting up auto-responses, setting up an effective filtering system, and managing candidate’s expectations. Remember, the more clear and informative you are from the start (i.e. in the job description and at interview), the less room there is for questions.

Placed’s in-app instant messaging system allows employers and candidates to talk to each other quickly, and easily arrange interviews on-the-go. Employers can also set automated responses to ensure all candidates get acknowledged without spending hours writing responses, strengthening their brand as trustworthy, communicative and respected.

Be consistent from start to finish

Customer service is only good if the whole experience is positive. This is a crucial fact that is regularly overlooked. It is wasted effort to perfect your job descriptions but have a poor application process, for example. Or to only be responsive to successful candidates whilst leaving the unsuccessful ones in the dark. Keep in mind, negative experiences stick out far greater than positive ones, even if they are the minority.

It is therefore important to regularly monitor and overlook your applicant journey. Work out where candidates are dropping off, or where you may be implementing poor customer service, and seek to correct those. Ensuring candidates have a positive experience no matter where they are in your attraction or application process is the key to boosting your talent pool, vastly improving your quality of hires, and building your brand reputation.

For more knowledge on effective hiring and where the biggest drop off points are for candidates, check out our blog here.