Earlier this year, a company contacted me directly and asked me to apply for a job in which part of the application process was to make two short videos, take a written personality test, and create a presentation in Keynote, among a slew of other tasks. The company was young, dynamic, and I was excited to potentially work for them.
After submitting my “tests,” to the HR person, I waited a couple of days before contacting them to see the status of my application. No answer.
A few more days went by and so I emailed them again. My HR contact had gone to New York on vacation and didn’t mention it to me, nor did he put anyone directly in charge of my application. Worst of all, the company never got back to me to tell me either yes or no, although I did end up finding another job.
I’ve shortened the story and left out many details but let me just tell you it was the worst job-hunting experience I’ve had, simply because that company didn’t treat me, as a candidate, right. In other words, I did all the work, and there was never a feedback loop. I was never even told, “No thanks, we already filled the position.”
Your startup candidate’s experience should NOT be like this. It’s imperative that you create a positive experience for your candidate that makes them think, “This startup is incredible. I would love to work here.”
Let’s look at three simple ways you can make your job candidates’ experience a positive one:
Greeting The Candidate
If your potential hire makes it to the hiring stage, someone from your startup needs to greet him or her. Wandering through hallways or knocking on doors to find you is too awkward and it doesn’t make a good impression. Even if you’re busy, make sure someone is there and ready to greet your candidate!
Have A Plan Ready And In Place
Instead having your candidate come back on different days to meet your team members, make sure everyone involved in the hiring process is ready and free during the time agreed upon for the interview. The more times your candidate has to come back to meet new people on your team, the more he or she will perceive you startup as unorganized and not considerate of their own time.
This really does make a difference.
Create A Feedback Loop
During the hiring process, you also need to establish necessary deadlines for your team for getting back to you with their input on the candidate. Two business days is about the maximum your startup should take before contacting your candidate with a decision. If they are moving forward in the process, you need to let them know that they’ve progressed and that you will get in touch with them in “X” amount of time with more news.
Creating a feedback loop ensures that the candidate won’t simply walk away and find another more attractive position. Yes, candidates are competing to work at your startup but you’re also competing with other startups for grade A talent.
In the end, it’s important to respect all of your candidates during the hiring process. Any bad experience a candidate may have will travel quickly through the small startup community and your company’s reputation can sour as a result. This isn’t something you want to risk, considering your startup is in its growing stages.
Even if you can’t hire all of the best talent out there, you will be able to establish a good reputation and give candidates a positive experience with your startup and your brand.