It’s bad practice but it happens: You invite a solid, promising job candidate to an interview and things go well, so you invite them back for a second round and they….disappear. No email, no call, nothing; they just don’t show up and you never hear from them again.
There might be several reasons why someone feels comfortable and confident enough to do this. It’s also possible something came up in their personal lives that took them out of the running and they didn’t have the time to let you know.
Ultimately, you might never know why someone took themselves out of contention for a job, but there are ways to reduce the risk of it happening to your company.
- Keep talking. Job candidates increasingly express frustration that there’s a lot of time between emails or phone calls during the interview process. The best course correction here is a simple one: Keep your candidates in the loop on how the interview process is going! If you’re in the early stages of reviewing resumes, let them know their application has been received. After an initial screening phone call or interview, let them know within a few business days whether you’ll be asking them back for a second conversation or if they didn’t make the cut. As the process goes on, let them know your timeline for bringing someone on board and tell them as soon as possible whether they’ve earned the offer or if you’re going in a different direction. (This will also help boost your reputation as an employer that is communicative and respectful of a candidate’s time!)
- Build trust. You want to come across as a manager that someone will want to work for. You want them to envision themselves joining your team and what their workday would be like. If someone gets a bad or less than welcoming impression from you, they’re going to continue their job search elsewhere. In each interaction with a candidate, make them feel welcomed and valued. If you really liked an answer they gave to a question, highlight that. If something didn’t sit right, ask a follow-up question. The more honest and direct you can be during the interviewing process, the more people will respect you and want to join your team.
- Be respectful of their time. We’re all accustomed to waiting to see a doctor during an appointment. The same isn’t necessarily true of waiting to meet with someone during an interview. You might not know in advance whether someone is taking time away from work to interview with your company; they might have lined up a babysitter or missed a class to make this appointment work. Be on time and prepared to meet with the candidate. Review their resume and have at least a basic understanding of their background and experiences to show you really are interested in them and learning more about what they’d bring to your team.
- Provide useful feedback. Each interview is an opportunity to help someone. When speaking with someone about a job, help them understand why you selected them to come in and talk to you. Discuss what it was about their resume and background that made you think they’d be a good candidate. Talk about what skills they’d utilize in this job and how those skills might be further developed in this particular job. Help them understand their strengths and build confidence so that even if this job doesn’t work out, they feel more confident going into the next interview.
Put yourself in your candidate’s shoes. They’re anxious, excited, nervous and maybe feeling a little unsure of themselves. They want to make a good impression and are eager for the opportunity to start a new career and make a positive change in their life. It’s up to you how they feel when they walk out of your meeting: Are they inspired? Do they feel like they made a connection? Or do they feel like the deck was stacked against them from the start because it was hard to tell whether their potential new manager was prepared or interested in them at all? The environment you create before, during and after an interview sets the tone for the whole process and can make or break a person’s interest in working with you.
If you’re looking for new candidates, or advice on how to improve the interview process, call Davis Staffing! Our recruiters can help put you in touch with candidates who are qualified to join your company and who are available to start soon. When you’re ready to try something new and turn over a new leaf in your hiring process, call Davis Staffing!