Employers have been urged not to keep potential recruits in the dark during the average two-week time lag in the recruitment process, or face missing out on the best employees.
Some companies are not responding fast enough, forcing highly skilled workers to go elsewhere, according to recruitment firm Parity.
In the worst-case scenario, potential employees could be poached by rival companies, the firm said.
In sectors such as IT, where some skilled workers are in short supply, recruiters can no longer afford to keep valuable candidates waiting, Parity warned.
“Companies are at risk of wasting valuable time and resources by having to repeat the recruitment process if they fail to make decisions quickly enough and the intended employee chooses not to wait around for an answer,” said Simon Church, strategic sales director at Parity.
“Keeping skilled applicants waiting on your decision is unfair on the individual and subsequently detrimental to your business. If skills go elsewhere in a market that is already tipped in favour of the skilled worker, the business will not be able to function at its optimum level.
“Employers must remove time delays and drastically improve the recruitment experience for the candidate if they want to win over potential recruits,” he added.
Parity offers the following six tips for best practice during the recruitment process:
Plan the whole recruitment process carefully at the outset and agree interview schedules with agencies before releasing the requirement.
Acknowledge job applications within three days of receipt, either explaining that the candidate was not suitable for the position or moving them onto the next stage of the process.
Ensure interviews are conducted within the following week.
On the day of the interview do not leave the interviewee waiting in reception for longer than five minutes – an interview is a two-way process and if the candidate does not feel valued, they may not accept the job.
Immediately after the interview, explain to the interviewee when they can expect to hear a decision from you on the position.
Call the interviewee, or the recruitment agency involved, as directed in point five, either giving them the good news or giving useful feedback as to why they didn’t succeed this time.