Why is candidate experience so important and what are the tools you need to ensure it?

A candidate’s experience throughout the hiring process can make or break their decision to accept a job offer from your company. Not only this, unsuccessful candidates may have an altered perception of your employer brand (for better or for worse) from their experience throughout the interview process. Talent acquisition is competitive, but recruiters must be acutely aware of ensuring applicants come away from the hiring process having had a worthwhile, positive experience regardless of the outcome.



Hiring a new employee comes with logistical challenges for hiring managers and recruiters, from candidate screening, chasing leads, monitoring the application process and maintaining contact with applicants. Ensuring a great candidate experience should always be kept at the top of the priority list for your recruitment team. Recruitment software and applicant tracking systems (ATS) are invaluable in observing the candidate experience throughout the recruitment process. Automating the day-to-day admin-heavy tasks in recruitment, recruitment software gives your HR team more time to focus on hiring the right person for your organisation and connecting on a human level.

We’ve talked before on the necessity of empathy throughout the recruitment process, and what may be motivating a candidate’s application. Here, we want to take that further, and highlight how you can implement tools from your recruitment software to enhance the candidate experience. At Hireserve, we understand the importance of maintaining the ‘human touch‘ in recruiting software. That’s why our ATS features are personable and customisable features to suit the specific needs of your organisation and your recruitment process.

Here’s our top 5 recruitment software tools to ensure and improve your candidate experience.


#1: Candidate Portal

Centre your candidate experience through a purpose-built Candidate Portal in your recruiting software. Integrate your candidate portal seamlessly into your site and offer an all-in-one self-service careers site for your company. Having all of the necessary information for job vacancies in one easy-to-use platform improves candidate experience as they benefit from a clear, comprehensive view of everything they need to know to begin their application.

Particularly in the initial stages of the application process, a self-service candidate portal offers a personalised user experience for your applicants to input their information, empowering your candidates to feel in control of their application. When recruiting, it is good practice at this point to place expectations on the stages of the application process and how long it may take to hear a response. Offering a touchpoint for candidates at this stage eliminates many anxieties over the progress of their application and benefits overall candidate experience.

What makes a candidate’s application positive will undoubtedly benefit future interactions throughout the recruitment process. Building a positive relationship between hiring managers, recruiters and applicants makes it easier to negotiate salaries, holiday entitlement and other benefits once a job offer is made.



#2: Self-service Interview Scheduling

The Hireserve ATS Candidate Portal offers an integrated self-service Interview Scheduling platform for candidates to book and release interview times within a given time frame. Ensure your candidates feel in control of their own hiring process, and eliminate anxieties around not being able to make a time slot. Improving the candidate experience at this crucial stage of the interview process enables job seekers to perform better in the interview, with the assurance that their interview slot works in their schedule.

Even better, with seamless Online Interviewing built into the ATS platform, candidates don’t have to worry about setting up Zoom or a Google Meet as their video conferencing link is automatically generated through the ATS software.

An added bonus of self-service interview scheduling is that it streamlines your recruiters workflows, saving masses of time on scheduling in interviews and liaising with applicants. By saving time on admin, recruiters can use their time more effectively, chasing candidates, offering candidate feedback and attracting the top talent for the position.

#3: SMS Integrations

Hireserve’s SMS Integration is an incredibly effective means of offering a human touch to recruitment software, with minimal input from your recruiters. Utilising the ATS platform, SMS integration automates messages to be sent directly to your candidate’s phone, from interview reminders to directions on the interview day.

This additional touchpoint in the candidate experience can truly set apart your company from the competition. Improving communication throughout recruitment not only improves the candidate’s impression of your company but can be incredibly useful to minimise missed appointments, making sure your hiring process operates efficiently. Try adding a personal flair to automated messages to provide a personable experience for your applicant.


#4: Hiring Manager Portal

Using a cloud-based Hiring Manager Portal when recruiting benefits candidate experience as time consuming administrative and logistical decisions can be made and edited in one platform, reducing the time it takes for the recruitment team to respond to candidates.

Placing the ‘human touch’ into recruitment software, the hiring manager portal bolsters the experience for applicants that reach the interview stage as hiring managers and interviewers have access to a full suite of candidate documents directly from the software platform. This ensures once the candidate is in the interview room (or an online interview call), they will receive a high-quality, personalised experience, no matter how busy the interview schedule is.

Hiring managers can create and edit vacancies directly from the platform, remain up to date with the interview process, scan documents and manage scheduling all in one end-to-end software solution.

Find out more about the Hireserve ATS Hiring Manager portal today!


#5: Social Media Integrations

Fostering a cohesive link between your company’s social media channels and your recruitment onboarding encourages a positive candidate experience. Through social channels, applicants are given a holistic insight into your company’s personality, and allows them to see if they’re a good fit even before submitting an application. Top tip: don’t make your LinkedIn a glorified job board. Candidates want a well-rounded view of your company.

Social media integrations, like the ones we provide in Hireserve ATS, enable you to post automated job postings through your Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter and enables your potential candidates to seamlessly apply for upcoming positions.

Another benefit of this candidate experience strategy is generating talent pools for future positions that may become available. Encouraging candidates to connect with your company via social media enables you maintain company visibility even after the hiring process. Unsuccessful candidates who have benefitted from a great candidate experience in their first interaction with your company may be interested in future positions that are more suited to their skill sets. Posting new job advertisements through the social media integration then enables you to access what essentially becomes a pre-built talent pool.

Recruitment software holds the power to transform the candidate experience from the initial application, right through to interviews and job offers.

Utilising an applicant tracking system effectively when hiring new talent for your team can really make the difference in the overall candidate experience of a hiring process. Candidate experience is crucial to maintaining your employer brand. Investing in the experience of your talent acquisition will only improve the reputation of your company and how much you care as an employer.

Saving time on day-to-day tasks when recruiting gives you more time to really engage in the experience of your candidates. After all, a positive candidate experience will only improve your chances of securing them as your new hire.


Are you looking for more insights into how your candidates behave during the recruitment journey? From research to attitudes towards online interviews, we cover it all in Candidate Behaviour: The Big Report – one of the most comprehensive research reports in the industry.

Created in partnership with Monster, we asked jobseekers across the country, of all ages and working in a wide range of sectors, to tell us how they act, think and feel during the hiring process. So, for a deep dive into your candidates and how they feel, download your report today!

About the author

Tristan Potter

Hireserve ATS is an Applicant Tracking System designed for in-house recruitment teams, and is trusted by organisations across the globe.