July 1, 2020

Ten Ways Companies Impress Candidates During Interviews

by Mary Newgard

Recruiting is sales. If you’re excited about a candidate and want to do everything possible to reel them in, then when it comes to interviews, the ‘same old, same old’ won’t get the job done.

You want your company to stand out. To be memorable. To differentiate yourself from competitors. Do this by giving the applicant an interview experience they don’t expect. 

Ten Ways Companies Impress Candidates During Interviews are little things, by design. Insurance companies & brokers that pay attention to the small details gain a competitive advantage in the recruiting process.

Make the Candidate Feel Special

1) Provide an interview itinerary. Send an electronic ‘interview agenda’ to the candidate with the itinerary + additional info about your company like a brand video, benefits package and social media highlights.

2) Give an office tour. Workplace esthetics are an important factor for many applicants. People want to work in fresh, fun and updated offices.

3) Introduce them to management. During the tour, pop by the CFO’s office even if he/she isn’t part of this hiring process. Accessible, engaged leaders with open door policies make a great impression.

Make the Candidate Feel Informed

4) Share statistics. I bet you have a copy of the job description handy, but what about an org chart, a 20/20 outline or Best Places to Work marketing materials? It ain’t bragging if it’s true!

5) Talk about the future. Share your vision for growth. Key issues like retention, diversity, inclusion, career pathing, education and management training are hot topics for recruits. People join organizations that value and invest in their employees.

6) Reveal your highs and lows. If your employee retention is 99%, don’t bury the lead. Job seekers want stability. In turn, if you’ve had two people in this position before, share the reasons they didn’t work out and what you’ve learned to correct the problem.

Make the Candidate Feel Wanted

7) Write a thank you card. How many interviewers send a thank you to candidates? Very few. It’s so simple and an expectation you probably have for the applicant. Be the first to express gratitude. It will make a huge impression!

8) Set and keep timelines. Have you ever ended an interview with the phrase, “We’ll be in touch”? but the next communication doesn’t occur for several days or weeks? Inconsistency confuses candidates. People lose interest when deadlines are missed and timelines are vague.

9) Break bread together. Seal the deal before an offer is presented. Ask the candidate out for a drink or to play a round of golf to finalize details. If you have a family-oriented culture, invite them and their spouse to dinner with a few other couples.

10) Present a Kick*** Offer. Candidates can tell if you’ve limped to the finish line. The offer will fall short on compensation and miss key details. They will be excited if you’re excited. Insert something unexpected (like a signing bonus). Outline all the details on benefits, PTO and stock options. Include a plan to help them transition from acceptance to start date which includes prepping for the resignation, buying their book, fighting their non-compete, etc.

“Ask the Insurance Recruiter” is a monthly column written by Mary Newgard, Partner and published in partnership with Insurance Journal Magazine. Visit Insurance Journal Magazine’s website for a complete list of previous articles. For questions and comments, email Mary at mnewgard@csgrecruiting.com


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