· 3 min read
Quick-to-read HR news & insights
From recruiting and retention to company culture and the latest in HR tech, HR Brew delivers up-to-date industry news and tips to help HR pros stay nimble in today’s fast-changing business environment.
This Halloween, let’s take the ghosts and jump scares out of recruiting and leave that to the haunted houses.
While a recent survey from interview coaching service TopInterview found that some of the scariest parts of the job search for candidates are rejection and interviewing, it can also be a little nerve-racking from the HR point of view.
We spoke with a couple of recruiters who offered up advice on how to make interviewing less scary for both recruiters and candidates.
Transparency is integral. One of the main ways recruiters can make the job search less scary is by taking off their corporate costumes and showing a little more of their real selves, said Laura Mazzullo, founder of recruitment firm East Side Staffing.
“There’s this persona of many recruiters, who are positive, optimistic, and sugarcoat or sweeten things, like telling the candidates all the perfect things about the company, the role, how great the manager is, and how great the [job] market is,” Mazzullo told HR Brew. “But that’s the part that’s scaring candidates…they’re not getting the transparent picture.”
While it’s a recruiter’s job to share the good parts about a role, she added that it’s also their job to talk about the challenges a candidate might face and the “murky, more challenging parts of the role, the organization, and even the market.”
Transparency can also remove the all-too-common fear of being ghosted from the recruiting process for both candidates and recruiters, said Liora Alvarez, founder of career coaching and equitable recruiting firm Colorful Futures.
According to the TopInterview survey, out of 350 US employees, 57% said being ghosted—left completely in the dark on their application status—was the scariest part of a job search.
“Every recruiter should get into the habit of sending updates every Friday to your candidates,” Alvarez told HR Brew. “I can’t tell you how many times I’ve received gratitude from a candidate simply by telling them that there’s no significant updates, but things are still moving.”
Be more structured. Another frightening aspect of the recruiting process is that “companies aren’t doing structured interviews or competency-based interviews…they’re just winging it,” Mazzullo said.
She recommended recruiters work with hiring managers and leadership to outline the “technical and cultural-contribution competencies” required for a role in your company, or the technical skills needed for the job and what makes a good cultural fit within your company.
Once those competencies have been outlined, turn them into questions for the interview, Mazzullo said. Share them with the candidate ahead of the interview, so there’s more structure for the recruiter and candidate to follow in the interview.
Candidates will be less scared of the interview if they know the topics that will be covered, she added. This makes a recruiter’s life easier, as well, because candidates will be prepared with examples.
“This creates an incredible process…[it’s] fair, efficient, and candidates feel well-prepared and confident,” Mazzullo said. “[And] the hiring manager knows exactly what they’re evaluating…not just going in there aimlessly.”