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  • Writer's pictureChloe @ OneSource HR

Feeling Depleted by Recruitment Process Drop-outs?

Gone are the days of posting your simple job advertisement on the big free job boards, and watching the applicants roll in, having pick of the bunch and making lowball job offers to the most attractive candidate. I mean, not that we ever approved of that approach to start with, but the point I’m trying to make is, recruitment has become a lot more challenging, and from speaking with clients and HR professionals across the globe, it’s quite possibly the number 1 challenge for a lot of businesses right now.

It's common knowledge that unattractive job adverts, protracted hiring processes and poor interview experiences put candidates off from proceeding with applications and accepting job roles. But if you’re producing the crème de la crème of job adverts, acting with pace, completing succinct and communicative hiring processes, and are still experiencing recruitment process drop-outs, and candidates declining your offers, then read on; I have some insider tips for you to minimise this headache and become a pro at retaining and closing candidates.


If your candidate has a clear understanding of the structure and length of your recruitment process, they’re more likely to stick around, and not become disillusioned with it.

Transparency at this stage of the employment relationship, and indeed before a formal employment relationship has even begun, sets an expectation for the candidates of the transparency and therefore trust, they can expect from the future and ongoing relationship.

First impressions and all that jazz!

So be clear with your candidates before engaging them in the process:

  • How many stages are in the hiring process?

  • Will any technical tasks/ presentations be required?

  • What is the interview format?

  • Are competency-based questions linked to any company values?

  • What are the company values?

  • At what point after each stage can the candidate expect feedback?

  • Who are the interviewers?

  • Where will interviews take place?

Spending 15 minutes simply planning this information out at the outset of the hiring process, with the hiring manager, enables you to transparently communicate this to candidates upfront, maintaining high levels of engagement and trust in your recruitment process.

Want to go one step further? Why not write service level agreements into an applicant guide about timeframes and communication, which can be easily downloaded by active and passive candidates from your company website; a sure-fire way to set you apart from the competition through demonstrating your commitment and respect for candidate time.


Commit to giving feedback within a fixed timeframe of each stage of the hiring process concluding and be transparent with the candidate about when that is. Receiving chasers via telephone and email from candidates to ask for feedback should NEVER happen and signifies that they are losing trust and engagement in the hiring process. Should you proceed to make an offer to a candidate that’s had to chase you for feedback, they are 58% less likely to accept, and proceed to accept their second choice!

However, it's not just about the timing of your feedback, but the quality of your feedback. Particularly if you’re inviting a candidate back to a next stage interview; you have everything to gain and nothing to lose in adequately preparing them to succeed.

If you have doubts about a perceived skill, wish to explore a competency further, or are seeking clarification on an element of contribution to a project – tell them, so that they can prepare! You don’t have to tell them the answer you’re looking to hear, but simply the points you want to validate and explore further. A smart candidate might even ask you upfront – ‘what reservations do you have at this stage, if any?’ and if they do ask, I highly encourage you to be honest with them.

If you keep candidates in the dark and feed them BS at this stage of the relationship, it’s a good indicator to them that you’ll mushroom manage them if they become an employee.

How can they trust that in the first few weeks and months with the business, they’ll receive honest feedback about their performance, if you aren’t willing to give it at this early stage?

Company Culture

Your workplace culture directly informs how engaged your team are, and how productive and successful your company is, data going back decades confirms this by linking engagement and trust index scores to profit.

A positive workplace culture not only retains talent within your business but attracts talent to your business. The behaviours that you display throughout the recruitment process will directly influence a candidate’s decision to become a part of that culture. So, clarification and feedback, to create trust and engagement as aforementioned, are key. But what else can you do?

The job advertisement, and advertising careers at your company even passively is the first and best opportunity to showcase your culture. The job advertisement should be focused on the company’s collective mission, goals, and values, and how the role advertised, directly contributes to this. This method attracts candidates who are intrinsically motivated.

Intrinsic motivation comes from contributing to work that is enjoyable, meaningful, autonomous, and generally satisfies basic psychological needs, as opposed to extrinsic motivation, which is undertaking work for reward or output, i.e., money. It’s no secret, everyone wants to get paid, but when you feel rewarded by something psychologically satisfying and aligned to your own moral compass, you’re much more likely to do well at it, and they’re the kind of people you want working with you.

Being upfront about your company mission, strategy, core values and individual contribution will attract candidates. This doesn’t have to always be tailored to individual roles; we’ve been working with clients struggling with recruitment recently to product bespoke applicant guides which support candidates through the recruitment journey and inform them upfront of the culture.


Clarification, feedback, and culture, it all comes down to one simple concept – TRUST.

Our applicant guide is a transparency tool to inform candidates upfront of relevant company, culture and hiring process information to ensure engagement and trust in the hiring process and reduce recruitment process drop outs. If you’re ready to become an employer of choice, stand out from the masses in a depleted candidate labour market, contact us today to find out more about creating your own applicant guide to reduce recruitment process dropouts.


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