Let’s Give Feedback!

Although there has been a number of articles published on the issue, questions still remain about the proverbial elephant in the room – the lack of recruitment process feedback.

Despite countless discussions, the trend still remains, and there is no easy way to solve this problem. The lack of feedback affects everyone – recruiters, HR departments of large multinational corporations, public institutions and omnipresent start-ups, and unless giving feedback becomes a habit, the candidates will continue to suffer. I hope this article will start a bigger conversation that can change things from what they are today to full transparency.

Maybe you have already found your dream job as a recruiter/sourcer, have this wonderful sense of stability and changing anything is the last thing you could think of.  However, go a few years back in time and recall applying for dozens of jobs, sending out endless applications, not to mention hours spent preparing and adjusting your resume for each new position that you wished would be the one. Recall waiting to hit that jackpot.

And then…


Days turn into a weeks, weeks into months – and there is still nothing.  No response, no word from the recruiter…

You may have wondered – what happened? Chances are, no one in the company where you have applied to had a moment to copy-paste a template with a simple explanation why you weren’t a fit for the role. Yep, I was there too, and I am sure so were you.

It never feels good when you are applying for the position without receiving any word in return. Sometimes candidate just wants to know if he/she will be considered or not.

How are we supposed to learn from each other? And finally, how are we supposed to improve the overall recruitment/selection process without giving any feedback to the candidate?

Let’s change things around and create a better world with the FEEDBACK!  If  it is not yet a part of your organization’s recruitment culture,  introduce a way to respond. Be kind to your future candidate.

Why giving recruitment feedback to candidates (especially for students and young graduates) is crucial? And what is the best way to give this feedback?

Adjust your feedback accordingly.

The further the candidate goes in the recruitment process, the more disappointed he or she gets after being rejected in the final stage, and this candidate needs a more detailed conversation around why he or she was not chosen. A simple “not enough experience” does not provide a candidate with an opportunity to hone their interviewing skills and implement those improvements in practice.

Base your feedback on concrete examples.

Feedback should be based on examples. It’s important for recruiters to take notes during interviews and collect them in the ATS (Applicant Tracking System). That’s why every person involved in the recruitment process at each stage can leave information on a candidate to can be used later on to give meaningful feedback. And that leads to…

Feedback makes people loyal.

A candidate who gets a constructive feedback might decide to apply to the same company again. Using the given information, he or she has a chance to improve himself/herself to become a new hire. It may leads to the acquisition of a dedicated employee who is more motivated and prepared to join the company.

Feedback works both ways.

It is not only the candidate who can benefit from recruitment feedback, the recruiter can get feedback from the candidate too. Getting to know the opposing point of view can be used as information about the company and how attractive it is to potential candidates. It also provides valuable feedback on the recruitment process itself (i.e. levels, length, stages etc.).

Helps to identify target group for employer.

Providing candidates with feedback supports creation of a pipeline full of talent to be reached out to in the future projects or job openings.

Creates respect and appreciation.

Unsuccessful candidates may have an automatic negative perception of the employer just because they didn’t succeed in the selection process. Lack of feedback is perceived as a lack of courtesy.  A situation when someone is rejected but at the same time receives meaningful feedback on their performance, would  create mutual respect and a positive candidate experience.

“Although company X didn’t hire me, they gave me a constructive feedback on my performance during interview. Now I know exactly what I should improve.”

Feedback builds relationships and helps in networking.

It has never been easier to make your opinion widely known. Rejected candidates can shatter employer’s image with a one single tweet or comment. Companies should be aware of the fact that the negative word of mouth will spread faster thanks to existing social media channels and business/recruitment portals. It may have a strong impact on the company’s positive and negative recognition in the market. As a result, future networking can be at risk.

Knowing all of that, is it possible to always provide candidates with feedback?
Who really decides whether to give (or not to give) feedback?
I would like to hear your thoughts on recruitment feedback! Let’s get the conversation started!



By |2018-08-24T13:05:48+00:00February 10th, 2017|Categories: After the Interview, Opinion|2 Comments

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  1. Martyna February 13, 2017 at 7:11 am - Reply

    Good point! People like to feel unique; the need to feel special is common to human beings. … even if refused they still want to feel that all efforts should not be for nothing; time spent on learning about the company, day off taken for an interview etc. Feedback is a great add value even if not positive!

    • Malgorzata Legan March 30, 2017 at 2:36 am - Reply

      Martyna, thanks for your comment! I completely agree with you. Feedback is a value – anytime. It helps us improve and look at something from a different perspective.

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