The number of people picking up the phone these days is rapidly declining despite it being the most effective way of communicating with candidates. You can get an answer out of someone instantly instead of waiting for them to reply to an email, build up rapport and you don’t have to rely on Wi-Fi! The response rate of calling someone up also tends to be higher than emailing them or even messaging them on LinkedIn so if you’re not already, you should think about actually picking the phone up to your candidates. Here are seven things to remember when you call your candidates.
What time is best for them?
If your candidate is already in a job, it’s highly unlikely that they’re going to be available to speak during their work hours. Those hours will obviously depend on their job but you should aim to call them before work, on their lunch break, after they finish or whenever they have requested a call. Don’t be surprised if they don’t pick up if you’re trying to contact them in the middle of their shift or working day!
Is this their preferred way of contact?
Are you sure that the candidate wants to be called? Maybe they work long hours and a phone call isn’t convenient for them. Make sure you know exactly how they want to be contacted before you start calling them round the clock because it will soon get on their nerves if they’ve requested to be emailed or messaged instead.
Do your research
If you’ve never spoken to a candidate before then make sure you’ve done plenty of research on them and you know exactly what their qualifications are, their current role, what they could potentially be looking for, etc. If you don’t then you’ll be in danger of wasting both your and their time and even if you have spoken to them before, it’s still a good idea to give yourself a little refresher before you pick the phone up!
Take an interest in them
One of the most important elements of recruitment is a positive candidate experience so remember that it’s about your candidates, not you. Take the time to understand their skills, hobbies, interests and motivations and show a genuine interest in them.
You can learn something from them
Recruiters will know their client’s needs and other areas of the industry which their candidates haven’t been exposed to yet, but it is the candidates who are far more likely to know what a job actually entails. Just remember that you don’t know everything about the role and you could learn a thing or two from them. Find out what they actually do and the nitty gritty of their job so you can extend your knowledge and benefit yourself.
If you’re calling them at work, it’s likely there will be a gatekeeper
More often than not, you’ll speak to a receptionist before you get put through to your candidate. They are going to ask you who you are, where you’re calling from and what the call is regarding, so you need to prepare what you’re going to say before you make the call. It’s not the best idea to state you’re calling from a recruitment agency and have a fantastic opportunity for your candidate as the likeliness is that they’re not going to put you through! Ensure you are in control of the conversation and try to ooze confidence down the phone to give you more of a chance of getting through.
Call them back when you say you will
One of the most frustrating things about being a candidate is when recruiters say they’ll call you back and they don’t. All you need to do is pop a reminder in your calendar to give them a buzz!
Next time you decide to pick up the phone to one of your candidates, just remember a few of these tips to help improve their experience. They may seem basic but if you put them into practice, they’ll become second nature and make your candidates feel more valued.
Lastly, don’t forget to record your comments or put a note in your recruitment CRM.