No transferability, no feedback – Candidates have feelings too…

We have just completed some research to find out what candidates find most frustrating in the current jobs market.

300 candidates gave their views on a number of scenarios in the current job market, and indicated whether they were satisfied or frustrated. We also asked them to grade their frustration…

The headline results are that the following had the highest percentages of ‘very frustrated’ or ‘quite frustrated’…

The overall lack of relevant job opportunities for me 88%

The transferability of my skills into new sectors is being ignored 82%

The lack of feedback as to why my CV is rejected 74%

The lack of constructive explanation on why I’m not right for the job 73%

The very slow selection process 73%

There isn’t much that we in HR & recruiting can do about number 1 at present, but there is a lot we can do about the rest.

Why aren’t we looking at transferability of skills?? CIPD research recently showed that HR professionals believe that skills are transferable between sectors…so why isn’t it happening??

Why aren’t we telling candidates the reasons why their CVs aren’t right for the roles that they’ve applied for?? Why aren’t we offering simple, constructive advice??

Recently on our LinkedIn group a candidate told of a call she had made to a recruitment company. She had submitted her CV to the recruiter, who had sent her CV on to their client with a note saying that ‘they would let her know the outcome ASAP’. Two weeks later she hadn’t heard, assumed it was a ‘no’ so put a call in to the recruiter to try to gain some closure. She was told that the recruiter was no longer with the business, and that the role had been filled…she was then told…

“To be fair if we spent all day phoning people who were ‘no’, which we’d like to do because it’s the ‘experience’ as much as anything that counts, we simply would go bust”

Whatever business model it is that dictates that communication with the people that enable it, or could enable it, to make profits is not worthwhile, is a failed model….

Surely all of us…recruiters (3rd party and in-house), hiring managers and talent professionals have a duty to treat with dignity, respect and compassion the people who show an interest in working for our businesses and clients….

Views: 82

Comment by Alasdair Murray on January 29, 2010 at 4:38am
Here;s a real exchange of emails I had yesterday.

Me: I just wanted to say how unimpressed I was that you didn't even take the time to get back to me, albeit with a "thanks but we have plenty of applicants" following my recent email to you regarding the freelance role you advertised. I am hearing more and more how applicants are being ignored by consultancies and frankly it is a very poor reflection on xxxxxxxx and the recruitment consultancy business as a whole. I am eminently qualified to do that particular role yet all I received from your good self was silence. Thankfully I am not desperate for work, I was merely curious, but in this current climate many, many people are and I can think of nothing worse than the poor job seeker seeing a role they are qualified to do, applying in all good faith and then not hearing anything at all. It must be soul destroying. I hope you realise that when you choose to ignore your next batch of applicants.

Them: "Thanks for your email and am disappointed to have left you with a negative impression of xxxxxxxx – this is clearly not our intention. I received your application on the 20th of January and as per your assumption, received over 100 applications for this role. I am still going though these applications and have not yet replied to everyone who potentially fits what we are looking for. (NOTE from me: This is NINE days after I applied) Furthermore, completely understanding the state of the current market and envisaging that this job advertisement would receive a high response, in order that candidates like yourself would not be disappointed, I have clearly stated on the advertisement that only successful candidates will be notified. I can totally understand how frustrating this must be for jobseekers like yourself; we do endeavour to get back to suitable candidates and it is extremely difficult for us to reply to every application that is emailed to us within a set timeframe. I can only apologise for the dissatisfaction you feel and assure you this isn’t the service we aim to aspire to."

So there's the cop out. Put the line I have highlighted in your ads and you are seemingly admonished of all responsibility. personally I think it's very poor customer service not hearing anything after nine days let alone never. What's wrong with an automated response that lets people down gently or getting a support person to send out a courteous thanks but no thanks letter/email?


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