Rachel Robins |

Causes of a Bad Candidate Experience 

Job hunting can be a long and arduous process from the perspective of a candidate. There is also a great deal of uncertainty in the modern job market and ensuring that a candidate has a positive experience when applying for a role is a key facet in nurturing talent and engaging with talent to buy in to your company culture.

A negative candidate experience can have a lasting impact and put a candidate off applying for a role. Whether it's the process of applying for a role that is far more challenging than it needs to be or the online recruitment process lacks the features to support the candidates journey - help is at hand as we cover some of the leading causes of a bad candidate experience.


The most common complaint raised by job hunters is that businesses are frequently very poor at communicating with candidates. This can range from long turnarounds in acknowledging applications or responding to queries to not responding altogether. Naturally, if the candidate is very keen on landing the role or is bound by time constraints, poor communication can be incredibly frustrating and lead to an overall negative impression of the business.

An Applicant Tracking System is one of the leading tools in helping in-house recruiters and talent teams to communicate with candidates all the way through the recruitment journey. Through features such as uploading a CV, creating an account at the same time as applying for a role, interview scheduling and Candidate Relationship Management with automated email and SMS, candidates feel engaged throughout the various stages of your recruitment funnel.


An interview is frequently the very first time a candidate has the opportunity to have a face-to-face conversation with a member of the business. First impressions are important and the interview process can shape the way in which candidates see the business. It’s not uncommon for interviews to be unneccessary unpleasant which can lead to good applicants potentially pulling out of the hiring process as well as talent being deterred from applying in the first place. Think about your interview process and touch points. What impression are you wanting to create? Is the interview a two-way process? What are the next steps? 

Application Process

Completing a job application can be a daunting experience for many potential employees. Long and complex applications make the process seem like a huge undertaking that requires significant time and effort from candidates. This can lead to a negative candidate experience if not managed properly, as it may create feelings of frustration or discouragement.

One of the best ways to improve the candidate experience is to reduce the complexity of the application process by breaking it into smaller, more digestible steps. Shortening lengthy forms, simplifying any 'paperwork' required, and providing helpful guidance are all examples of how organisations can make their application process more intuitive and less time-consuming for applicants. Through an Applicant Tracking System, recruitment teams are able to access key analytics that highlight the stages of the process that lead to talent drop-off, clearly illustrating where refinement is needed.

This free report has a section on the best features for optimising online candidate experience. (See pages 32-39). Download your copy today. 

Contact Eploy for Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) 

At Eploy, we offer a highly configurable Applicant Tracking System designed to help you attract, hire, and retain the best talent. Get in touch with our specialist team at Eploy to find out how we can help you meet your recruitment goals or schedule a personalised demo. No hard sell, no strings attached. Just some winning ideas to help you.

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