Recruitment is an industry where resumes fly in and out of inboxes like paper airplanes, and interviews are conducted with the speed of a F1 pit stop, so often it’s easy to overlook one critical aspect: communication. Communication in recruitment isn’t just important; it’s essential. In fact, it can be the difference between a forgettable career and one that’s truly impactful. And at the heart of this communication lies a seemingly simple but often neglected practice: giving candidates feedback.
Imagine this: you’ve just been on an exciting first date. There were sparks, laughter, and a sense of genuine connection. You wait by your phone, eagerly anticipating that follow-up call or text. But days pass, and silence ensues. You’re left wondering, “What went wrong? Was it something I said or did?” This sense of uncertainty and frustration isn’t unique to dating; it’s a feeling that countless job seekers experience after they’ve invested time and effort in a job interview, only to be met with radio silence from the hiring side.
Now, put yourself in the shoes of the candidate for a moment. They’ve carefully crafted a resume, tailored a cover letter, aced multiple rounds of interviews, and perhaps even imagined their future with your company. They’ve invested a piece of themselves in this process. And then, without any explanation, they’re left hanging. It’s not just a rejection; it’s a void, an unanswered question. What could they have done differently? What skills or experiences were lacking? It’s a recipe for disillusionment and frustration.
This is where the art of giving feedback comes into play. Providing constructive feedback to candidates who didn’t make the cut is not just a courtesy; it’s a responsibility. Here’s why:
It’s the humane thing to do
Candidates are not just entries on a spreadsheet; they’re real people with dreams, aspirations, and bills to pay. Treating them with respect and dignity by offering feedback is simply the right thing to do.
Improvement through feedback
Feedback isn’t just a one-way street. By providing candidates with actionable insights, you empower them to improve and become better candidates in the future. Your feedback could be the catalyst for their growth.
Positive employer branding
How you treat candidates, especially those you don’t hire, speaks volumes about your company’s culture. Candidates who have a positive experience, even in rejection, are more likely to speak well of your organization, potentially attracting future talent.
The world is smaller than we think, and the candidate you reject today might be the client, colleague, or collaborator you work with tomorrow. Establishing a respectful and transparent relationship can pay dividends down the line.
Now, let’s circle back to your career as a recruiter. How does giving feedback build it?
Professionalism and credibility
By consistently offering feedback, you position yourself as a professional who values communication and respects all candidates. This professionalism not only reflects well on you but also on your organization.
Providing constructive feedback requires skill in diplomacy and effective communication. These are valuable skills that will serve you well in any career and in life.
Recruiters who invest in relationships and communication tend to have a more robust network and a more fulfilling career. The word gets around, and you become known as someone who does things the right way.
The importance of giving candidates feedback cannot be overstated. It’s not just about ticking a box; it’s about treating people with the respect they deserve, helping them grow, and building a reputation as a professional who cares about the human side of recruitment.
Remember, every interaction you have as a recruiter can have a ripple effect, and by embracing communication and feedback, you can make those ripples positive and lasting. So, the next time you’re about to hit that “send rejection” button, take a moment to provide feedback—it’s a small action with a big impact.