Positive Candidate Experience is Really Recruitment Operations Excellence


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Most people I talk to about candidate experience largely miss the point. That’s because positive candidate experience is more about recruitment operations excellence than it is about candidate Netpromoter score.

When we developed Survale’s candidate feedback and analytics platform, we came from a place of trying to make the recruitment experience a good one for candidates because we knew that happy candidates translated into better recruitment outcomes.

But as we worked with clients it became clear to us that what we were doing was more about facilitating recruitment operations excellence than increasing candidate satisfaction.

As clients began harvesting candidate experience feedback at each stage of the hiring lifecycle, huge nuggets of data became available that helped recruitment operations understand what was working and what wasn’t. Large blind spots became evident. Correctable problems surfaced, and opportunities for recruitment operations excellence presented themselves.

Recruitment Operations Excellence Success Stories

One client used Survale data to understand that they were competing for talent not against other food services organizations, but in fact competing against top apparel and tech organizations in their area. Adjustments made, results improved.

Recruitment-operations-excellenceMany clients learned that they were losing candidates during the interview process as hiring managers needed more training and more accountability in the hiring process. And they had the luxury of hard data to prove it and feedback to fix it. Adjustments were made, results improved and hiring managers now have the ability to manage their own performance by monitoring candidate feedback.

Other clients are able to use candidate feedback to understand what candidates’ expectations are at each stage of the hiring process. Are they receiving the right communications with the right frequency? Are they understanding value that the organization can bring to the their careers? Are they acting quickly enough and presenting the right offers to hire candidates before they are hired somewhere else?

All these questions can be answered and assimilated operationally to result in higher levels of recruitment operations excellence.

Many clients align their recruiters and hiring managers by gathering candidate and hiring manager feedback about recruiters, using this data for weekly operational meetings. Issues that surface through candidate or hiring manager feedback can be acted upon in real-time. This alignment between recruiters, hiring managers and candidates results in recruitment operations excellence.

Other clients gather feedback from job seekers at their career sites to understand how effective their sites are at conveying employer brand and converting job seekers to applicants.

Experiential Data Meets Operational Data

The key to recruitment operations excellence is overlaying experiential data and operational data.

The ATS is the system of record for recruitment operational data. When did the requisition open? How many job seekers applied? What was the conversion rate from applicant to interview? Interview to hire? How long did it take to hire for the job?

The ATS can tell you what happened, but not why it happened nor how to improve these operational results. When you overlay experiential data derived from feedback about these transactions, the full picture emerges. Questions become answered and opportunities are uncovered.

This is transformative stuff for talent acquisition leaders.

And while it’s rooted in candidate experience and candidate satisfaction, it’s really all about recruitment operations. So yes, you want happy candidates. There is tremendous value in that. But those happy candidates are really the key to happy executives. Happy because they are getting better talent, more quickly and more reliably.

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