Because developers are in such high demand, it’s easy to assume that they don’t get nervous before a big job interview. As a result, tech recruiters tend to prioritize other facets of their developer hiring process before giving any consideration to candidate engagement. But whenever I speak to a developer, it’s not long before he or she tells me about how an opportunity sounded great until they realized the recruiter didn’t have their best interests in mind. To help you avoid losing your top tech candidates, here are a few ways a positive candidate experience helps you stand out from the competition to hire developers.
The harsh reality of recruiting developers is that you’ll occasionally meet talented people who aren’t quite ready to hit the ground running. But considering how eager developers are to learn new skills, the odds are that it won’t be long before those promising candidates fill in any remaining knowledge gaps and become your top targets. Sure, it’s daunting to approach a developer you previously rejected and say, “Hi, we think you're a genius now. Do you have some time to chat?” In fact, a recent survey by the Talent Board found that unsuccessful candidates who had a positive experience with a company were twice as likely to re-apply. Treating developers well throughout the interview process, regardless of whether or not you want to hire them, is an easy way to keep your pipeline consistently full.
Some of the best developers you’ll meet will be passive candidates. They will also be some of the most outspoken and opinionated people you’ll ever come across. They’re particularly happy to share their interview experiences with their colleagues, especially when they hear that a friend is up for a job they were rejected for in the past. What does this mean for you? The developers you’ve declined can have a tremendous impact on your entire employer brand. If they had a positive candidate experience with your company, they’re more likely to recommend your open roles to other developers in their network. But if they feel that you treated them poorly, they’ll probably tell their friends to look elsewhere.
Over 17% of developers who responded to our survey this year said that the interview process is one of the most annoying parts about finding a new job. There’s plenty you can do to remedy this, and improving the candidate experience is often as easy as making yourself available for any questions they have along the way. On the surface, it might be hard to believe that candidate engagement alone can influence them to join your company over a competitor. But as unpredictable as each person is, if you’ve built a meaningful relationship with a developer, you’ll be in a much better position to hire that person than someone who didn't.