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Candidate Journey: The Ultimate Guide for Recruiters

Many talent asset executives emphasize the significance of presenting a persuasive prospect experience. Substantial familiarity with the candidate journey is the foundation.

Before consumers arrange to purchase, they go through a prolonged thought approach. It takes a period of processing the data about a company and the product or service it offers before determining if they want to make a purchase.

The buyer’s journey does not differ much from the candidate’s, showing that recruitment and sales are very similar.

Candidates go through numerous steps in the candidate journey before they choose to apply to your firm. The second phase of their journey starts when they decide to utilize the application process.

Comprehending the candidate’s journey is crucial to improving the candidate’s experience and acquiring the best talent. As the market has become very candidate-centric, getting candidates further down your application funnel is becoming increasingly more complex.

Candidate JourneyUnderstanding the Candidate Journey

Comprehending what candidates go through can enhance your entire hiring process to guarantee candidates do not fail in their hiring process.

Businesses are now more influential than ever in considering the candidate’s experience. Negligence to do so could maintain adverse importance to your brand’s image. 72% of candidates communicate online, and distressing stories are not unheard of to spread on social media.

Additionally, many job seekers read six or more reviews before assembling a view of a potential employer. After reading nasty comments, 55% of the job seekers will bypass a company altogether. It is not difficult to notice how a compelling candidate experience can lead to specific consequences.

It is essential to consider the candidate’s journey to ensure your company provides a compelling candidate experience. The journey consists of a sequence of steps job applicants go through. They consist of the moment they are aware of a vacancy until their onboarding.

The representation of the candidate’s journey can appear as a funnel. Again the process is similar to those used in sales and marketing.

It is important to remember the next seven steps: awareness, consideration, interest, application, selection, hire, and onboarding.

The primary issue with the candidate journey is that the process tends to be excessively prolonged. For example, on average, many companies take 42 days to fill vacant positions. The process is too drawn out, specifically considering top talent is primarily only on the job market for ten days.

Researching each stage of the candidate journey with thorough attention to detail can support streamlining the method and put your organization on the fast track to employing top talent.

Now, let us observe the phases of the candidate’s journey.


The beginning of every active candidate’s path starts with awareness. Therefore, this occurs when your candidate becomes aware of your job opening. Attention can happen in several ways. For instance, the prospect may become aware of your business through a job board posting through your company’s social media, LinkedIn or Indeed, channels, articles, careers page, or through a referral.

The idea is to attract the proper talent. The reasoning is you want to save both your hiring team and applicants’ time. It’s essential to thoroughly understand your ideal candidate persona and design a strategic strategy for talent interest and attention. 

Consideration and Interest

These two aspects convey some overlapping and can address them simultaneously. In the consideration stage, candidates will move beyond the particulars of the petition you have publicized and attempt to acquire a more practical understanding of your organization.

Utilizing employer branding principles for the consideration stage is essential. The best employer brands are uniform across all communication channels. Social media, company pages, word of mouth, and job descriptions have similar branding. These brands locate paths to take the inner narrative of joyful employees and communicate an outward declaration that entices prospects.

Your company’s first impression of potential candidates is a positive and clearly defined employer brand.


The application process is perhaps one of the most critical yet often overlooked phases of the candidate’s journey. Long, complex job applications can detract from your candidate experience.

According to CareerBuilder, 1 in 5 prospects will not complete an application that takes 20 minutes or more to complete.

Here are some best thoughts to maintain regarding your company’s job application process:

  • Always make sure someone in your company has gone through the process of applying for a job you’ve posted. Otherwise, you might overlook details that can make or break the candidate’s experience.
  • Is your application mobile friendly? Today’s candidates primarily use their phones to discover job opportunities. However, due to formatting problems and unresponsive pages, mobile job seekers complete 53% fewer applications and take 80% longer to finish each application.
  • Are you consistent and timely when communicating throughout the application process? A majority of job seekers say they would be discouraged from considering other relevant job openings if a company forgot to inform them of their application status. However, they would be 3.5 times more likely to re-apply if they knew their status.

The job application is an important piece to the candidate journey.Selection

During the selection phase, candidates correspond to potential employers by assembling more precise data. During the interview process, most prospects are willingly capable of telling whether or not they can visualize themselves functioning for your company. Therefore, it’s essential to be as transparent as imaginable.

At this stage, you should attempt to communicate to the candidate what work-life at the company. Let them understand what type of culture they can anticipate, how the workforce is structured, what challenges come with the position, and the perks of collaboration and success.

Additionally, it would help if you encouraged candidates to ask as many questions as possible and raise any concerns about the job. Unresolved subjects in the minds of qualified candidates could negatively impact their willingness to take a job proposal if invited.


For every job proposal, there are at least two conclusions—one by the employer and one by the candidate. Everything leading up to the proposition will affect the conclusive determination for both parties. A slip in the preliminary phases of the candidate journey could negatively influence a possible hire’s willingness to take an offer. Therefore, treating the candidate journey funnel as a holistic, harmonious procedure is essential.

The respite of application, uniform and punctual communication with recruiters and hiring managers, and transparent illustration of company culture and values indicate whether your company’s organization is professional and an attractive workplace.


Next comes the onboarding phase, which can have consequences if overlooked. For example, 28% of new hires leave within 90 days. Hiring consumes a significant amount of time. It is also a costly process.

Confirming the smooth and optimized onboarding process is essential in maximizing your company’s hiring ROI. Some onboarding best procedures include:

  1. Begin onboarding before day one by sending new hires emails. Be sure to walk them through their first day. One simple step we have found with good success is utilizing a welcome pack. Insert a personal note or card. Provide a phone number forthe manager they will be working will help set them up for success
  2. Construct the process cross-departmental with collaborative onboarding. Pair up your recent hire with a seasoned employee to guide them. Therefore, a collaborative approach will construct camaraderie with other groups much quicker than one-on-one onboarding.
  3. Organize one-on-one time with direct managers. 96 percent replied spending one-to-one time with their direct manager is the most critical element of their onboarding venture
  4. Set anticipations and objectives early. Apprehension of job expectations and performance objectives is a new hire’s most menacing threat. Therefore, developing a relationship between new employees and direct managers is crucial for new employees’ success.
  5. Double-down on company values, culture, and principles. So proactively broadcast your company’s culture by sharing content on social media, including new hires in meetings or events, or featuring the company history in the employee welcome packet. Ensure your company’s Employee Value Proposition, mission statement, and guiding principles are aligned.

The Bottom Line

Candidate journeys and candidate experiences are about people and relationships. We discussed how comparable the customer journey was to acquiring new talent and the candidate journey at this article’s origin.

The crucial distinction between products and individuals is individuals are people. People are breathing beings with feelings and emotions. We operate on how we feel, so we must consider every exchange we make with those near us.

When it comes to candidate journeys, it is more crucial than ever. Not only do you want to impress, but you also require your candidates to sense a high level of security, safety, and value at every step of the process. Even if you determine you don’t have employment for them at the time.

Utilize our ultimate candidate journey article to look after your people. Therefore you will not go wrong. Employ them to construct your potential engagement feelings. Consequently, they will genuinely feel essential and tended to, and you will flourish in facilitating a more fantastic breadth of candidates through your acquisition funnel.

AkkenCloud offers the most comprehensive front-officemiddle-office, and back-office staffing software with AkkuPay payroll for staffing agencies and recruiting agencies looking to increase efficiency, streamline operations, and grow revenue.

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