Why is the ‘Candidate Experience’ so Important?

Candidate Experience

The candidate experience is the sum of all the interactions and impressions that a  job seeker has with an employer during the hiring process. It includes everything from the job posting, application, screening, interview, feedback, and offer, to the onboarding. The candidate’s experience can have a significant impact on the employer’s ability to attract, engage, and retain talent. 

78% of individuals believe the experience they have as candidates reveals how the company values its employees, according to a CareerBuilder study. Furthermore, 69% of respondents preferred a company that extended favorable treatment throughout the hiring process. In the survey, 58% of respondents said a bad hiring experience would make them less likely to purchase from a business. 

candidate experience

Therefore, the experience is not only important for hiring, but also for branding, reputation, and customer loyalty. In addition to enhancing their public image, positive candidate experiences can help employers build a strong employer brand. A negative experience can damage their employer’s brand, tarnish their public image, and loss their customer base. 

Here are some of the benefits of providing a positive experience: 

Increased Quality and Quantity of Applicants 

By attracting a larger pool of superior candidates, affirmative candidate encounters can benefit employers. Providing constructive candidate experiences will enable potential candidates to better understand the employer’s values, goals, and aspirations. Additionally, exceptional candidate experiences encourage candidates to refer others looking for employment within the same company. 

78 percent of candidates with a positive candidate experience were willing to recommend another candidate. Conversely, 47% of candidates who had an adverse candidate experience discouraged others from applying for similar jobs. 

Reduced Time and Cost of Hiring 

candidate experience

A positive candidate experience can help employers reduce the time and cost of hiring by streamlining and optimizing the hiring process. Positive candidate experience can eliminate unnecessary or redundant steps, simplify or automate tasks, and provide clear and timely communication. Positive candidate experiences can also reduce the risk of losing candidates to competitors or other opportunities.

According to a survey by IBM, companies that provide a positive candidate experience can reduce their cost per hire by 70%, and their time to hire by 50%.  Moreover, companies that provide a positive candidate experience can improve their offer acceptance rate by 38%. 

Improved Employee Engagement and Retention 

An affirmative candidate experience holds the potential to assist employers in enhancing employee engagement and bolstering retention rates through the establishment of pragmatic expectations, the provision of valuable feedback and assistance, and the facilitation of a seamless transition. A candidate experience that fosters alignment with the organization’s goals and values ensures that potential candidates understand the role, company, and culture. Additionally, constructive experiences offer candidates useful feedback and guidance that refine their skills and performance. In addition, a favorable experience also streamlines the onboarding process by furnishing candidates with indispensable information, resources, and training. 

candidate experience

The Glassdoor survey found that 90% of candidates want a company to cultivate a positive candidate experience by being transparent and consistent. Furthermore, 80% of candidates emphasize the importance of receiving feedback after an interview to foster a positive candidate experience. 


In addition to hiring outcomes, the experience impacts the employer’s brand, reputation, and customer loyalty. Employers can improve employee engagement and retention by providing a positive experience. A negative candidate experience can hurt employers in all these aspects. Therefore, employers must ensure a positive experience, regardless of the hiring outcome. Employers should meticulously craft and execute a hiring procedure characterized by equity,  openness, courtesy, and promptness. Concurrently, employers should actively seek and incorporate input from candidates on ways to enhance their overall experience. 

By providing a positive experience, employers can gain a competitive edge in the talent market, and create a lasting impression on their potential employees and customers.

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