Feedback: Your Secret Weapon in a Tight Hiring Market

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Author: Beth Tucker, CEO

It’s no secret that this year’s talent market is tight, but there is a secret to remaining competitive in it. Providing feedback should be a priority for any employer looking to have an edge in the hiring process, especially with candidates in short supply.

With unemployment at a low and candidates in high demand, finding and qualifying the right candidates is harder. And, those that you do interview are expecting much more from the process than employers might be used to. This is where feedback come into play.

Put yourself in the candidate’s shoes. Often, he or she is taking time off from work to come to your office and interview. They’ve done their homework on the company and have prepared for your questions. Their hopes are high as they click send on a thank you email recapping your discussion. And then they hear… nothing. Radio silence.

At a minimum, it’s disappointing. Not liking a candidate is ok, but letting them know what they could have done better is a courteous gesture and can help improve their skills for the next interview. Your feedback doesn’t have to take hours to craft, either – bullet points are perfectly fine. Even better, if you’re working through a recruiter, they can delicately deliver this news to the candidate instead of you. Plus, your input will help the recruiter better tailor the next candidate to your needs.

On the other hand, if you do like the candidate and don’t provide any feedback, you could risk losing that person to another company. Letting them know immediately that you enjoyed your discussion is important to reinforce their positive feeling about your meeting. This opens the lines of communication to keep your candidate engaged, and empowers the candidate to express any lingering questions they may have about joining your team.  If you aren’t able to provide an offer right away, this candor may be the hook that keeps your candidate interested until you are able to confirm the hire.

Certainly, finding the right fit is important for any employer on the hunt for talent, and offering feedback is an important step in keeping your hiring process healthy and competitive.