Applicant Experience vs. Employer Experience

A recent article about employers requiring applicants to jump through hoops to apply online caused a colleague and I to “take sides” on the applicant experience versus the employer experience.

Applicant Advocate: “I think applying online can be painful and frustrating. Everyone’s process is a little different, it’s time consuming, and taking some of those assessments up front seems like a waste. Applicants looking for jobs/applying online have to take multiple assessments and personality profiles before anyone even looks at their applications. So, applicants get to be frustrated. In a saturated market, that’s ok I guess. But when you have a hard time filling positions, it’s not really a good thing.”

Employer Advocate: “But, don’t you think it’s less time than going to an interview and getting rejected because not a fit?”

Applicant Advocate: “I agree it’s a great screening tool for recruiters and HMs. I just think it could be a little more applicant friendly. I’ve heard applicants say, ‘I just want to apply for a job, not create a long-term relationship with these people.’ Thankfully, myStaffingPro doesn’t make people create accounts and collect all of this extra information that is a big frustration. Still, why not look at the person’s resume and then send them the 50 question personality test if you are even remotely interested in them? If you can rank people based on this ‘artificial intelligence’, just send the assessment to your top applicants.”

Employer Advocate: “Well… in my opinion, the online application is the first ‘interview’ of the applicant to the employer. I believe both sides should conduct themselves as such… the employer should be professional and present information about the job, company, etc, and the applicant should provide information he thinks will get him the job. I don’t see any need for a recruiter to look at an applicant’s resume just because he’s interested. As an employer, I want to see applicants go the extra mile to meet the demands of my online application, because that tells me about the level of their interest in the job, their work ethic, and their thoroughness. So I think it’s good to make applicants work a little bit, as long as the employer takes into account the amount of work he is putting them through compared to the type of job.”

Applicant Advocate: “I totally agree with you there. I’m talking more about assessments upfront and creating accounts just to apply for 1 position. The pre-screening questions are a great tool, no doubt. I just think the problem with having all of these tools is clients are tempted to use all of them up front for all positions and that’s not always necessary. Hence, they get a lot of drop-offs.”

Employer Advocate: “I do agree that assessments and lengthy logins upfront are often a waste of time for applicants. Both applicants and employers would be better served with assessments being administered as a phase 2 or 3 of the hiring process, not phase 1.”

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