How Was Your Job Application Experience?

HR and Recruiting Professionals, your talent brand is not the problem.  How you recruit and your application process is the problem.

Do companies and their recruiters actually test the application process they ask potential candidates to wade through?  It can be daunting and no wonder many great candidates abandon the process.


A candidate just uploaded their resume and cover letter and now you want them to list everything all over again—spend an hour+ doing it on your system (one that’s different from the 25 others they’ve used on different career sites).  Once the final “submit” button is pushed (if the applicant gets that far) they see your warning “Thanks for submitting your resume but you may not hear back if we determine there’s not a match”.

Then, depending on the “key word density”, your applicant tracking system may send them to the cloud with a resume never to be seen and the applicant gets no feedback.

What are the chances your recruiters will even view the resume?


BAD FIELD:  Because they did not complete a required field!  Your calendar won’t disappear to allow for the next entry or what was entered into one of your fields does not qualify as a viable choice.

SALARY REQUIREMENTS:  Why ask for salary requirements when every piece of career search advice suggests not to discuss salary until the interview process is concluding?

  • Why is there a requirement to enter numbers in the “salary requirement” field before proceeding to the next page?
  • Why should a candidate eliminate themselves by filling in this field?

With application response rates of less than 1%, candidates need to have other options.  I’ve heard a few recruiters say “Now I understand what a candidate goes through!” when they enter the job market themselves.

An answer for the recruiter…

Play the role of candidate and experience what they have to go through when applying to your company.

If you think it’s cumbersome, suggest a change in the process to potentially open up the number of great candidates that want to apply.

Because, what a candidate experiences when they apply should match the great candidate experience you promote in your brand.

An answer for the candidates…

  • Supplement your job search by building your network and engaging with people you know for a referral or opportunity.
  • Research the company and employees.  Then, communicate directly with the hiring managers, even if you ultimately have to go through the formal application route at some point.

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