How to Improve the Candidate Experience in 2024: Experts Share Data & Strategies You Need to Know  

In today’s talent market, candidate experience remains a critical component of any effective talent acquisition strategy. During Radancy’s 2024 Talent Acquisition Leaders Day, we talked about how fully integrated recruiting platform can help organizations elevate their candidate experience during a segment hosted by our own Ross Davies, VP of Solutions Engineering, and Kristin Akin, Director of Solutions Engineering. In this insightful session, these experts shared how Radancy’s Talent Acquisition Cloud can help organizations streamline the entire recruitment process, enhance the candidate experience and attract top-tier talent. 

In this post, we’ll recap this session, including data on candidate sentiment based on millions of candidate surveys, along with strategies our experts shared on how to leverage cutting-edge technology to optimize the candidate experience so you can improve application quality and reduce time to hire. 

The Changing Needs of Applicants 

Our panelists opened by sharing that there has been a significant shift in the needs of job seekers. This change is driven partly by demographic shifts in the labor market, such as the retirement of the baby boomer generation and the increasing presence of Gen Z in the workforce. Additionally, candidates are placing a greater emphasis on their personal well-being in the wake of global issues such as the pandemic, global conflicts and climate change.  

Moreover, candidate sentiment has been changing and evolving rapidly, which is why it is critical for talent acquisition professionals to stay up to speed on shifts in sentiment, so they can adapt to the changing needs of candidates and update content and job postings to keep them fresh, relevant and engaging.  

But how can talent acquisition professionals keep track of these changes in candidate sentiment?  

Radancy has been conducting candidate research that highlights this change in candidate sentiment for several years, and Kristin and Ross shared some of these insights during their talk.   

Candidate Sentiment Hierarchy

Drawing upon around 2 million survey responses, Radancy’s data indicates a shift in the desires and needs of job seekers over the studied period. Interestingly, this shift essentially represents an inversion of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. Before the pandemic, self-actualization was a high priority for many candidates. However, by 2023, financial stability had become the top candidate concern.  

A Shift in Candidate Sentiment

Understanding this shift in candidate values is a critical foundation for any company to tailor its employer brand and recruiting efforts to speak to the desires, needs and priorities of today’s job seeker.   

So, how can you use these insights to tailor your recruiting strategy? Let us look at what our experts recommended:  

Tailor Job Ads to Attract Qualified Applicants  

To respond to the changing wishes and needs of potential applicants, companies must understand which channels candidates use to connect with them. Our experience suggests that around 40 to 60% of job seekers visit a company’s career page through a job advertisement. Creating informative, clearly structured, well-formulated, and detailed job ads can not only help reduce the number of unqualified applications but also help attract qualified candidates.  

Leverage Advanced Job Descriptions 

The Radancy Talent Acquisition Cloud equips talent acquisition teams to provide potential applicants with a comprehensive overview of both the company and the advertised position on the organization’s career site through Advanced Job Descriptions. These descriptions provide details about the role, required skills for success, specific benefits, and additional links to informative content, all on one page. A streamlined presentation of these vital details can help create an effective candidate experience, so you can stand out from the competition and drive more quality applications from your career site traffic.  

Customize Your Career Site to Attract Today’s Candidate 

A well-designed career website is a cornerstone of a successful talent acquisition strategy. When your career site not only provides the basic information job seekers need, but also provides details candidates want, all in one easy to navigate, convenient experience, you are not only saving potential applicants time and resources, but you are also helping them make a decision faster, ultimately speeding up the process.

Inspire Talent with Strong Content on Your Career Site 

Especially considering rapidly evolving candidate sentiment, the content on your career page is more important than ever. The more valuable information potential candidates find, the better their impression of your company. The goal is to give applicants a clear and understandable picture of what it would be like to work at your company so that they can envision how they would flourish in their career as a part of your organization.  

Job seekers want to gain insights into a company’s culture, values and mission to get a comprehensive picture of their potential new job. Blog articles, videos, photos, and quotes that feature or are written by real employees offer potential candidates an authentic look behind the scenes.  

Career sites provide an opportunity for companies to showcase their benefits and how they stand apart from the competition. So, make sure your career site features content on benefits like flexible and remote work arrangements, attractive employee perks, workplace facilities and other elements that set your organization apart. For example, you could feature topics such as how your company promotes employee well-being and satisfaction, highlight employee resource groups and showcase not only the fact that your company invests in its people – but more importantly to candidates – how.  

Attracting Talent Through Strong Employer Branding 

The career site is one of the most important places for your employer branding to come to life, so it is important to keep this fresh, relevant and updated. Think back to the list of changing job seeker values we shared above. How often are you tailoring your employer brand to speak to what candidates are looking for in an employer? Today’s candidates are looking for authentic corporate culture, transparently presented values and the company’s mission. Highlighting measures on diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) demonstrates an open-minded and respectful workplace.  

Investing in a smart career site is key, according to Kristin and Ross, because it helps you quickly adapt your employer branding and target the right messages to the right candidates. In fact, spending heavily on social channels without enhancing the career site can result in losing valuable talent during the conversion phase – which is when candidates decide whether to apply. So, make sure your employer brand is updated and reflected consistently across every channel that job seekers will interact with – from your job ads and job listings to your career site, social media presence and even your email automations. Regularly aligning your employer brand with your corporate brand – and ensuring it is tailored to appeal to the candidate’s needs – helps you stand apart from the competition for qualified candidates – and drive more quality applications.   

Increased Efficiency Through Data & Automation 

Analytical tools enable companies to understand visitor behavior on their career sites and make necessary adjustments so they can drive better conversion rates. Personalized content based on visitor data, such as location, increases the likelihood of applications.   

And to reach career site visitors who may leave your site before applying, with the right system in place, you can use techniques like retargeting to re-engage potential candidates, keep them interested in the company and even bring them back to your site to apply.  

Enhance the Candidate Experience with a Smart Career Site, Strong Employer Branding & Targeted Job Ads  

Your career site is the central hub for branding and candidate conversion strategies. An optimized career site strengthens your employer brand, plays a crucial role in converting visitors into applicants and helps your organization convert the most qualified candidates into applicants.  

The job market and applicants’ expectations are constantly evolving. It is crucial to remain flexible in your strategy and personalize the candidate journey. This includes regularly updating the content of your career site and ensuring that all communication across the candidate journey – from your job ads to your automations – are tailored to your target candidates so that you can drive more quality applications.   

With the right strategy and technology in place, you can level up your candidate experience and help your organization stand apart in the race for top talent.   

To find out how the Radancy Talent Acquisition Cloud can help your team elevate your candidate experience, contact us now.  

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