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By: Samantha Allison on September 22nd, 2020

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Are No-Show New Hires a Problem in Your Org? Stop Losing Candidates!

Talent Acquisition

The recruiting process under normal conditions can be challenging, full of unexpected twists and turns. During a global pandemic, the challenges are heightened. As a recruiting consultant, I often come across candidates who back out during the application process, drop out during the interview stage, or never respond at all after initial communication (ghosting). 

Rarely though, do candidates drop out after they have already accepted their offer. Since COVID-19, my team and I have seen this become a regular pattern.

During these times, there is a great deal of uncertainty, and people are looking for stability with their employment. Looking for a new job is stressful normally and even more so during the pandemic. As recruiters, it is our responsibility to try and settle the minds of our candidates. So, how can we best do that?

6 Ways to Prevent Losing Out on A Candidate After They Accept An Offer

Here are some tips to help prevent your company from losing out on a candidate after they have accepted their offer.

1. Ask Questions

Out of everything we do as recruiters, I would say, asking questions to get to know our candidate is by far the most important. It starts with the initial phone screen and keeps going until the employee has fully onboarded with the company.

During the phone screen process, recruiters should dig in and ask candidates questions to make sure they truly want the job. Some questions are:

  • Where are you in your search process?
  • What motivates you to look for a new job?
  • Do you have any other offers?
  • What are we competing with?
These questions do not need to get too personal, but getting this information is essential for our success.

Throughout the process, recruiters should check-in with the candidate to see what they are thinking or feeling and continue to have an open dialogue. If a candidate you are speaking with looks like they are a top contender for the position, make sure you ask questions. Such as, “If you get an offer, are you still planning on interviewing elsewhere?” Push back on the candidate; we can’t be afraid to ask the tough questions.

This process is a two-way street. It is not all on the candidate to make sure they are communicating their wants and needs.

2. A Day in the Life

During the recruiting process, one of the best ways for a candidate to see what it will be like to work at your company is to take them through what we call “A Day in the Life” of an employee. Essentially, show them what a typical day looks like.

If you can, have them attend a team meeting, take them on a virtual tour of the office, job shadow, and/or let them see their department/company operations. These small things can make a big difference. As the recruiter, show the candidate who you are as a company just by being yourself. How you present yourself is a reflection of how the company will be perceived.

Using this technique can help guide the candidate in either direction. If you portray an accurate picture of the company and they like it, it could sway their decision to choose your company over others.

3. Leadership Involvement

Senior leadership’s involvement during the recruitment process is a vital component to the success of recruiting efforts. Leadership sets the tone for the organization, and if they engage with a candidate, it can set the tone for what they should expect.

A small gesture helps make the candidate feel welcomed to the new company. It shows that the company is dedicated and committed to you. It starts to engage the candidate and helps them feel that they are an asset to the organization.

If you work for a small to mid-sized company, have senior leadership welcome the candidate to the team before their first day. It can be something as small as sending an email, having a quick phone call to thank them for choosing their company, and letting them know you are excited to have them on board. For larger companies, it may be harder to have the C-Suite reach out, but at a minimum, have a VP or Division Director reach out. At Helios, our CEO writes a handwritten card that is mailed to the new hire's home with a welcome package as well. 

4. Develop a Pre-Boarding Process

As I mentioned before, the recruiting process doesn’t stop after the offer has been sent. This, in my opinion, is one of the most important parts of the process. CEO of Crossman & Company, John Crosman, states in a FastCompany article, the most important time to keep communicating is the time between when the offer is extended and the first day on the job.”

Developing a pre-boarding process can help you stay in communication with candidates; you never want to lose contact with them. The plan can include how often you communicate with the candidate (every day, every other day, etc.) when you send the welcome email, when you plan to send them their HR documents, and if you want to invite them to a virtual get together.

Each item of the pre-boarding process is essential to ensuring the candidate already has a good impression of your company in their minds.

5. Virtual Get-Togethers

Due to COVID-19, it has made it nearly impossible for candidates to gain a clear picture of the organizational culture. You don’t get to see the office you will one day work in, you don’t get to meet your interviewers in person, etc. And because of that, it can make it hard to engage with your future co-workers.

The corporate culture is just as important as the work you will be doing. Making the candidate feel that they are a part of the team and showing them who they will spend their time working with, should be a top priority. By hosting virtual get-togethers, it can be a great way for a candidate to understand your culture and meet future co-workers. These meet-ups can be a happy hour, a weekly coffee, or a lunch and learn. All of these options allow for your candidate to get a glimpse into what the culture and employees are like.

6. Always Have a Pipeline

Lastly, never stop the interview process. Building a pipeline is another significant part of any recruiting process. Having back up candidates is critical in recruiting, as things will always come up. If you do not have a specific candidate identified, still having a pool of candidates helps narrow down your search and can save you a lot of time and money. You never want to start the process over again.

Nothing is ever certain, especially in these times. As recruiters, we can always do our best to ensure peace of mind with our candidates and hiring managers to ensure we are providing both parties with the best experience we can. By following these tips, you can have some peace knowing you did not lose out on a candidate after they have accepted because you didn’t do your part.