The Handoff

Recruiters know that keeping a candidate engaged and excited about a position makes all the difference. Fail to maintain their interest, and they can decide to opt out of the running or be swept up by the competition. Keeping the excitement going throughout the process can be challenging, especially once you have completed your portion of the process.

After all, if candidates drop out because they are not engaged, it can reflect poorly on the recruiting team. And as research from the 2015 Candidate Experience Awards shows, candidates are more likely to share their experiences with their peers and social networks; any disengaging, lengthy or burdensome candidate experience can impact your ability to attract the best talent.

So, what can be done? Ensuring a smooth handoff is essential.

Everyone involved in hiring needs to have excellent communication about all active candidates; recruiting is a team effort, and everyone plays their part in turning the best candidates into your next hires. To facilitate this process, there should be a clear strategy in place for when the candidate moves from working directly with the recruiter to transitioning to the hiring manager or HR team.

What should this process look like? I recommend having a meeting, in person or over the phone, with the all key stakeholders to ensure everyone knows their responsibilities and roles in managing the candidate relationship. Have everyone present and explain who is going to be there for the candidate throughout each upcoming phase. Just as important as figuring out who will do what on the company side is letting candidates know what they can expect. Inform the candidate of what’s to come, who they will meet with at each point, how long things should take and who they should go to with questions. Not only will this help them prepare for the tactical aspects of the interview process, but such transparency will go a long way in building and maintaining the relationship. No one wants to lose a great candidate, so even after your role is done, implement the strategies to keep them engaged throughout. By following up frequently, making a plan to execute the handoff flawlessly, and keeping lines of communication open, you can do just that. Otherwise, be prepared for a long and challenging hiring process.

By Caitlin Mandeville | People Science Talent Advisor