You've spent several hundred dollars placing ads in all the right places to get the attention of highly qualified candidates. Resumes are pouring in and those candidates are calling, eager to get an appointment to interview with your company.
Is your staff following through to give them the image you portrayed in your ads? Or are they turning off the brightest and best with their answers? You need to find out, or you are helping your competitors to hire your future employees!
Here are five things that will send candidates scurrying to another company:
1. Being placed on terminal hold when they call to make an appointment. While we all know that it's not possible to answer phones on the first ring all the time, there is nothing that says "I don't have time for you" like being put on hold for over 30 seconds. Think of how you feel about it, and give your callers the same respect for their feelings.
2. Being given an appointment for 2 weeks from today. The best candidates can find SOME company that will fit them into their schedule within 2 days, and they want work - the sooner the better. Unless you are the ONLY company that can use their services, they will go on to your competitor.
3. Making them wait once they arrive in your office on time for the interview. Many companies have a Receptionist who gives a new applicant the initial application when they arrive. Most require this application along with the resume as it answers questions and authorizes the company to make inquiries into the candidate's past work history, etc. The interview appointment should allow some time for the person to complete this application before the interview. Your Receptionist's greeting and attitude will set the tone for how this candidate perceives your company. Make sure this front-line company representative knows that all employees and prospective employees are a top priority for you. Sitting around after they have completed their application, waiting for an interviewer, is not going to convey that to the candidate.
4. Hearing a staff member make negative comments about a co-worker. A new candidate does not know any staff member yet. To hear one of the other staff members making comments about another one will make the new candidate wonder if they too will be subjected to this treatment if they become a member of the staff.
5. Not having their phone calls returned. Job seekers are anxious to know what is happening in their job search. When they phone to ask for an update (if you are an outsourcing or staffing agency) it is important to promptly return their calls, even if it is to tell them there is no news yet. It lets them know that you are as concerned with finding them work as they are.
Do some quiet investigating as a "candidate" calling your own office. Make sure that your company is a place that invites the brightest and the best to work there. If it isn't, now is the time to get every member of the staff in tune with your company vision.
Not every candidate is going to leave and not return if you do these things to them. But can you afford to take a chance on sending the best one to your competitor? After all, you have paid high premiums to get them into your office -- make sure you get the highest return on your investment.