Get More Quality Hires With an Effective Candidate Follow-up Strategy

The Importance of Follow-ups

The ideal candidate follow-up strategy should be based on a single controlling principle: Treat all candidates like valued customers – one of the most simple yet critical recruitment tips.

Job candidates know the importance of follow-up, yet interviewers often forget basic follow-up strategies, leading to poor candidate experiences and damaged business reputations.

Successful, in-demand candidates often decide against otherwise exciting job opportunities solely because the company didn’t follow up appropriately. Furthermore, treating your rejected prospects poorly can create a widespread negative perception of your organization.

The interview can make or break a candidate’s perception of your business. A LinkedIn survey found that 83 percent of candidates say a negative interview experience can damage a previously trusted company’s reputation, whereas 87 percent of candidates say a positive interview experience can bolster their perception of a previously doubted company.

In an article on Recruiting Blogs, Marvin Smith, strategic talent sourcing consultant at Lockheed Martin explains the situation like so:

“The social media revolution has set expectations that a person interested in employment with an organization should have transparency into the interview and hiring process … Great tension is created when [the] transaction does not align with social expectations — the very people that we are trying to assist are negatively impacted by the process. The answer is to walk your talk. Establish the expectations for the candidate experience with the initial engagement and communicate the candidates’ status at each step of the interview process.”

Hiring managers often get hung up on trying to land the all-stars and either forget or don’t care that other candidates are waiting for responses. You won’t neglect to communicate with your customers. Why neglect your candidates?

Emphasizing Relationship Building:


Designating a single point of contact for candidates throughout the hiring process can convey a sense of value and importance. This “concierge” approach fosters a stronger relationship between the candidate and the organization, enhancing the overall candidate experience.

Building relationships with rejected candidates can also yield future benefits. By maintaining a positive rapport, you increase the likelihood of them referring others to your organization or considering future opportunities themselves.

Communication at the Forefront

recruiters improving candidate experience through phone check-up

Effective communication is crucial throughout the candidate search and interview process. According to 94% out of 0,000 surveyed professionals in the LinkedIn Talent Trend Report, they want to receive interview feedback, and doing so would make them accept the offer much faster.

Consistent updates for all candidates, whether successful or not, are paramount to the candidate experience and your organization’s branding.

The Australian government advocates giving unsuccessful candidates the SPA treatment when it comes to providing feedback:

  • Strengths: Tell the candidate what they did well
  • Propose Alternatives: What could the candidate have done better?
  • Acknowledge: Thank candidates for their time.

You can incorporate this idea into your follow-up strategy:

  • For rejected candidates, sending timely feedback via email can provide valuable insights into their performance and reasons for rejection. This constructive feedback could guide them towards a better-fitting role. Utilizing templates for rejection letters can streamline this process while ensuring a personalized touch.
  • For successful candidates, a phone call from the hiring manager can provide a personal touch, reinforcing their strengths and expressing excitement about their potential in the role. This proactive approach boosts candidates’ confidence and strengthens their connection with the company.

Actionable Tips for Positive Candidate Experience

  1. Get your recruiter team ready
  • Provide regular training sessions for recruiters to stay updated on the latest recruiting trends and best practices.
  • Emphasize the significance of follow-up and candidate experience in the recruitment process.
  • Assign dedicated team members to guide candidates through the recruitment journey, ensuring a personalized experience.
  • Share insights from surveys and studies, such as the findings on LinkedIn mentioned above, to highlight the impact of timely follow-up on candidate interest.
  • Foster a continuous learning and improvement culture within the recruitment team to adapt to evolving candidate expectations.
  1. Timely follow-up:
  • Implement automated follow-up systems to ensure prompt communication with candidates post-event or interview.
  • Set specific timelines for follow-up actions to avoid delays and maintain momentum in the recruitment process.
  • Train recruiters to craft personalized follow-up messages that reference specific interactions or discussions from the event or interview.
  • Utilize technology tools like CRM software to track and manage follow-up activities efficiently.
  • Monitor response rates and engagement metrics to evaluate the effectiveness of follow-up strategies and make adjustments as needed.
  1. Record your interactions:
  • Develop a standardized note-taking template or system to capture critical details and insights from candidate interactions.
  • Encourage recruiters to review their notes immediately after the event or interview to ensure the accuracy and retention of information.
  • Prioritize information highlighting unique attributes or skills aligning with the organization’s hiring criteria.
  • Share relevant notes and observations with hiring managers or decision-makers to facilitate informed hiring decisions.
  • Incorporate feedback mechanisms to continuously improve the note-taking process based on recruiter experiences and candidate feedback.
  1. Tailored communication:
  • Segment candidates based on their preferences, interests, and stages in the recruitment process to tailor communication effectively.
  • Personalize follow-up emails with specific references to previous interactions, shared interests, or mutual connections.
  • Use language and tone that resonate with the candidate’s personality and communication style.
  • Leverage data analytics and insights from past interactions to customize communication strategies for different candidate profiles.
  • Encourage two-way communication by inviting candidates to share their feedback, questions, or concerns openly.
  1. Leverage Digital Platforms:
  • Utilize professional networking platforms like LinkedIn to maintain ongoing communication with candidates beyond the initial interaction.
  • Share relevant industry articles, resources, or job opportunities to keep candidates engaged and informed.
  • Create dedicated groups or communities for candidates to network with peers and industry professionals.
  • Provide access to online learning resources or webinars to support candidates’ professional development goals.
  • Monitor digital engagement metrics to assess the effectiveness of online communication strategies and optimize content accordingly.

To Sum It Up

Managing and maintaining relationships will work in your company’s favor far beyond the recruiting process. It is important to implement these tips when recruiting with every stakeholder. Too often, candidate follow-up is reserved only for the people you really want. This works against your best interests. every

Just being polite goes a long way toward promoting your brand. Treat people well, and people will regard you well — and want to work for you. It’s a simple formula. stakeholders

About Rakuna Event & Campus Recruiting Solution


Whether it is in-person or virtual recruiting events, we always have your back covered. Streamline your event recruiting operations seamlessly on one single platform.

With Rakuna’s Event & Campus Recruiting Solution, you can: 

  • Impress your candidates with paperless technology at recruiting events. Let Rakuna’s Mobile Recruiting App handle the data collection while your team converse and forge authentic connections, taking full advantage of face-to-face interactions.
  • Leverage Rakuna dashboard to plan, track, and promote all recruiting events, review candidates’ data and recruiters’ evaluations, collaborate with hiring managers, and automate communication with candidates pre and post-events.
  • Have a complete view of all existing events’ results, whether in-person, virtual, or hybrid, to analyze past performance and allocate resources accordingly. Focus on delivering results rather than busy the mind with administrative burdens.

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