Technology Insights: Technology to Improve the Candidate Experience

A candidate coming into an interview will have a great experience if the HR team has the resources to orchestrate a carefully run process.

A candidate will have a terrible experience if the hiring manager happens to be a jerk.

But most often, the experience is neither great nor terrible, just on the low end of mediocre because no one really has time to invest in making sure the process goes well.

Where software comes in

It’s not uncommon for candidates to walk into an interview and get the impression that the hiring manager hasn’t done any preparation at all. (Yes, it’s not just an “impression.”) Organizations let this sort of thing continue because candidates don’t complain and managers get acclimatized to this low level of professionalism.

Can software help?

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These days it seems software can help with almost everything. In the case of candidate experience, an app like Great Hires helps by letting the interviewers know who they will be meeting, what they should ask, and how any other interviewers rated the candidate.

For the candidate the app tells them who they will meet, when they will meet, and background information on the company and the job. These are simple things, but a little HR tech provides the helping hand that makes the process professional.

What is interesting?

  • The tasks taken on by candidate experience software are not complex, the work of managing a series of interviews is not hard per se, it’s just hard because we don’t have the time and energy to devote to doing it well. We feel we should be able to prepare for interviews manually, but the evidence indicates it doesn’t happen so we should be open to automation.

What is really important?

  • Software can increasingly play a role like a personal assistant. You can ask Siri to remind you about an upcoming meeting or the best way to get to the airport. Perhaps we need a whole suite of HR apps that simply relieve us of everyday burdens so we don’t drop the ball on things like ensuring a good candidate experience.
  • As soon as we have an app, we have access to analytics. One reason we let poor candidate experiences persist is that we don’t track it. Get an app and we can easily get candidates to rate the experience and that will raise a red flag if the organization is doing a poor job.

David Creelman, CEO of Creelman Research, is a globally recognized thinker on people analytics and talent management. Some of his more interesting projects included:

  • Conducted workshops around the world on the practical aspects of people analytics
  • Took business leaders from Japan’s Recruit Co. on a tour of US tech companies (Recruit eventually bought for $1 billion)
  • Studied the relationship between Boards and HR (won Walker Award)
  • Spoke at the World Bank in Paris on HR reporting
  • Co-authored Lead the Work: Navigating a world beyond employment with John Boudreau and Ravin Jesuthasan. The book was endorsed by the CHROs of IBM, LinkedIn and Starbucks.
  • Worked with Dr. Wanda Wallace on “Leading when you are not the expert” which topped the “Most Popular List” on the Harvard Business Review’s blog.
  • Worked with Dr. Henry Mintzberg on peer coaching, David’s learning modules are among the most popular topics.

Currently David is helping organizations to get on-track with people analytics.

This work led to him being made a Fellow for the Centre of Evidence-based Management (Netherlands) for his contributions to the field.



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