Is Your Candidate Experience a Human Experience?

November 13th, 2017
Colleen Perry
Candidate Experience

Over the past few months or so, I’ve noticed a trend on LinkedIn. If you spend any time in the talent acquisition space, you’re probably familiar with it: the “us vs. them” dialogue between recruiters and job seekers. 

What’s the Chatter?

Status updates from my recruiter connections are usually something along the lines of:

  • “If you are a job seeker and you inbox me, you better…” (Have a question, have researched me, respect my time, not have a typo, etc.)
  • “I’m so tired of applicants who….” (Inbox me, are lazy, expect too much…)
  • “If one more applicant….”

I get it. I’ve been in some form of recruiting my entire career. If I have not personally felt the pain of “unruly” candidates, I know people who have and I’ve heard their stories.  It is exhausting to have a job that needs filled, only to feel like the masses of candidates applying are not suitable. But that is not always the case, and I can also see firsthand how the candidate’s time and experience are not being considered.  I see and know job candidates who are frustrated that they cannot just “talk” to someone and showcase themselves. This brings me to the innumerable posts from burnt-out job seekers:

  • “I’ve applied to hundreds of jobs, yet I’m not getting any responses.”
  • “Why did they bring me in, interview me and “lead me on” only to not follow-up?”
  • “I am so tired of recruiters ghosting me.”

I’ve also been an active job seeker and a passive job seeker (I think we all have at some point).  In one fortunate instance I was pursued by a recruiter, got interested and went through the interview process. The hiring manager informed me I was exactly who she wanted. Despite my handwritten thank you notes and follow-up attempts, I never heard from them again. Ghosted.  A few months later, I called the recruiter and explained how upset I was that I was ghosted. She was apologetic, and told me the position had been cancelled. Why was I not informed?

The “Human” in “Human Resources”

I’m sure these posts have always been out there on Linkedin. I know the conversation has always been happening. I was just experiencing some variety of the Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon. See, this past spring I was actively job searching. Perhaps I just began to pay attention to these posts as they became relevant. Nevertheless, it stuck in mind. During my job search, I knew I wanted to work for HireVue. I knew it was a product I believed in - on both sides of the technology. As I was interviewing, I had my chance to be in the candidate’s shoes and it was everything I thought I would be: convenient, a bit scary at first, then comfortable.  It was refreshing to get chance to tell my story; to be dynamic and give the bullet points on my resume some context. I knew I had my chance and it was up to me - not up to an ATS scraping my resume for keywords. Since I started consulting with HireVue, I am constantly in awe of the use cases and success stories that come from our clients. Video interviewing is putting the “Human” back into Human Resources, and the implications are far reaching.  HireVue is helping to reshape the candidate experience and bridge the gap between recruiters and candidates by letting candidates showcase their human skills, not just their resume-writing skills.

Casting a Wide Net

Recruiters are able to invite all applicants to OnDemand interview. This often replaces the brief, difficult-to-schedule phone screens that provide recruiters a cursory understanding of each candidate. I know a lot of candidates that take these calls on their lunch breaks, or even on a break in their employer’s parking lot.  Instead, candidates participate in this interview on their time. This gives them a chance to present themselves at their best without any distractions. Additionally, this provides the recruiter the chance to see all candidates and hear from them - even the ones with less-than-stellar resumes. 

Breaking the Ghosting Cycle

Recruiters have a chance to reduce the read resume -> phone screen -> provide feedback (or ghost) cycle and instead get to see, watch, learn, and share. Often times, this revolutionizes an organization's recruiting efforts.  Take Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri, for example. They are able to pair applicants with jobs that are a better fit for their skillset and personality by letting job seekers introduce themselves with a video introduction. By providing hiring managers with rich content, they’ve increased hiring efficiency, bettered the candidate experience, and make more inclusive hiring decisions. 

Critical Context

The thing that I loved about my own candidate experience was the ability be dynamic and showcase my skills and abilities. I submitted my resume and within 24 hours I was asked to participate in the video interview. I was also given the name and email of an HR contact who would help me if I had questions.  Instantly, two human contact points were open for me: the ability to be more than a piece of paper and the fact that I had a human contact in HR. That alone was a different experience than any other job I applied for.  If you looked at my resume, you saw numbers supporting some very job specific skills. Depending on the competition, those could have been considered “low” compared to others in the industry. However, with the opportunity to complete an OnDemand, I was able to help my hiring manager understand how those numbers were actually outstanding in my previous work environment. Without the ability to provide context, I might not have been selected. Ask yourself: during your candidates' experience, do they get to showcase their human skills, or their resume-writing skills?

The “Human” Element

Through video, hiring managers and recruiters get to make decisions based on human skills, not a paper resume. Additionally, more evaluators are able to get involved when necessary. Everyone can watch the same video, creating continuity in the pool of evaluators.  One thing I have also noticed, the chatter on LinkedIn and from my friends and family - are not from users of HireVue. I know a few people who have completed interviews via HireVue since I’ve started, and they weren’t hired with the employer for which they interviewed. Even their dialogue has changed. They felt more secure with the outcome since that they were given the chance to present themselves.

About the Author:

colleen perry.jpgColleen Perry is a Professional Services Consultant at HireVue. With over 10 years of employment experience in HR/HCM technology she supports the change management efforts of HireVue customers in Banking, Healthcare, Hospitality, Retail, and Security. Find her on LinkedIn.