When is an applicant not a consumer? Never! All day and night when jobseekers are not looking for a new job (and Monday morning is their most active window) they are consumers receiving brand messages via TV, radio, billboards and social media. Then with Amazon or other retail websites they purchase goods but they are also consumers of their internet provider, their commuting method whether by train or bus etc and the list goes on. So why would an employer provide such a poor experience they alienate their jobseekers aka known as consumers to the extent they would shift their purchasing decisions. The real answer is all too often. The example of Virgin Media is quite well known and by their calculations it was a revenue hit of c $5m - not an insignificant sum. The candidate journey involves a number of key touch points some much more influential than others and yet many employers are happy to process the pipeline with little regard to the experience they offer non where along that journey they could deliver that amazing brand based journey that would lock in great candidates. So let's start to think differently about jobseekers and see them as consumers that expect a great experience and that they are valued irrespective of whether they land the job.
Imagine what the reaction of executives would be when they discovered that 18 percent or almost 1 in 5 of applicants were also your customers (I call them “applicants/customers”). And consider the angst if executives further knew that 6 percent of these rejected applicants/customers dropped the firm’s product almost immediately (within one month). Finally, consider their frustration when executives learned that this applicant/customer loss was costing the firm over $5 million each year. Well, that’s precisely what the cable TV firm Virgin Media found to be happening. This same expensive applicant/customer loss is likely occurring at your corporation. And you can’t do anything about these negative customer impacts caused by a bad recruiting experience because sadly, you don’t even know which of your current applicants are also your customers!