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Candidate Relationship Management

In the early phases of the recruitment process, engaging effectively with potential candidates can mean the difference between finding your next great hire or going back to square one.

In the past, recruiters had to manage candidate communications and relationships on whichever channels or platforms were available. Before enterprise software became available, most of these relationships were managed via notes, spreadsheets, and other basic computing tools. Now, candidate relationship management can be streamlined thanks to innovative software solutions that enable recruiters to:

  • Collaborate
  • Nurture talent
  • Engage candidates on a much deeper level

Here, we will explain how candidate relationship management works and why candidate relationship management software is key to a successful recruitment strategy.

What is candidate relationship management?


Candidate relationship management, which is sometimes known by the acronym “CRM,” is a process for improving relationships with current and future job candidates. The purpose of the strategy is to build meaningful relationships with candidates through proactive interactions, responsiveness, and understanding so that organizations can create a better candidate experience for current candidates, past candidates, and future job candidates.

Candidate relationship management is a relatively new strategy that reshapes the way companies hire and vet candidates. It reforms more passive approaches to hiring, in which a company accepts applications from candidates but takes a hands-off approach to interactions.

Why is candidate relationship management important?


Today, many companies are pursuing the automation and optimization of their internal processes to remain competitive. Thanks to innovative software solutions, the world of recruitment is also benefiting from advancements in:

  • Automated talent sourcing
  • AI-enabled messaging
  • And other technologies

Many job postings receive hundreds, if not thousands of applications, so it can be challenging for a small staff or for recruiters to engage with those candidates who show promise but do not always get the job they originally applied for.

A strong candidate relationship management strategy can help companies maintain relationships with those candidates who are still in the pipeline. From a business perspective, it’s beneficial to keep strong candidates engaged and excited about the brand, as they might represent the brand in the future if they are hired.

Candidate relationship management has also become more pertinent in an age when candidate experiences can be reviewed online, impacting the rate at which potential candidates apply for jobs at specific companies. Job posting sites like Indeed and Glassdoor are designed so that candidates and employees can review the candidate experience. In fact, 1 in 3 people say they have turned down a job just because of bad online reviews about company culture and the candidate experience.

Finally, the candidate experience is a representation of a company’s brand, just like the customer experience. Recruiters are front-line company representatives in a similar way to customer service representatives. Successfully managing candidate relationships can leave candidates with a positive impression of the company, even if they don’t end up being hired.

The candidate relationship management process


Candidate relationship management must be deeply embedded in the recruiting process to be successful, as it influences every touchpoint in the candidate experience.

First, it should be easy to apply for a job.

  • Create an accessible job description that sets clear job requirements, responsibilities, and benefits
  • Use promotional tools to make job postings visible on social media and search engines
  • If you need to engage with candidate remotely, you can use candidate relationship management software to host a virtual career platform fair or another chat-based online event

The candidate relationship management process begins with personable communication once someone applies for a job. Your HR staff should come across as affable and friendly, even with candidates who do not represent viable choices. The objective should be to leave a positive impression, even if a candidate does not get the job.

If a candidate looks like a good prospect, you should have a process for communicating with them regularly. Candidate relationship management software helps in this regard by delivering automated reminders and follow-ups. However, it pays to personalize certain messages, such as candidate rejections or congratulations.

A software solution can also help you consolidate these communications in a single location, whether you’re communicating with candidates via email, social media, or text messages. This way, if you need to revisit a candidate later, you can review all their previous communications without having to search through separate channels or databases.

Finally, you should have effective onboarding software for new hires and an empathetic way to communicate with candidates who have not been hired. The onboarding experience is essential to instill new hires with a sense of purpose and confidence.

What is candidate relationship management software?


Candidate relationship management software products are computing applications that help HR and recruitment teams:

  • Consolidate communications with candidates
  • Introduce new efficiencies into the hiring process
  • Deliver a positive experience for candidates who get hired as well as those who do not

The best types of candidate relationship management software use:

to find top candidates quickly and engage them with personalized messages.

Overall, this type of software helps you easily track, manage, and report on your candidate engagement efforts. With the right software, you can make the recruiting process faster and simpler, so both your staff and your candidates have a great experience with your company.

How does candidate relationship management software work?


Candidate relationship management software integrates into your recruiting process and replaces many of the cumbersome manual tasks that decreased productivity and inhibited your ability to communicate with candidates. With the right software, you can manage the entire candidate experience from a single interface, empowering your staff to do more with less.

Overall, CRM software should enable you to do the following:

  • Create clear, accurate, and actionable job postings
  • Promote your job postings through search, social media, job boards, and text messages
  • Engage with candidates easily and effectively across multiple touchpoints
  • Improve messages to candidates using AI-enabled personalization
  • Manage candidate information, schedule interviews, and store communications under a single source of truth
  • Uncover meaningful insights from both internal and external hiring data
  • Integrate with your existing recruitment, HR, and payroll systems

Most candidate relationship management systems are cloud-based. This means your staff can log onto them from anywhere, using almost any device. Once they are logged in, they’ll have access to a personalized dashboard through which they can manage the entire candidate experience. They’ll also have access to all the tools they need to engage with candidates, communicate, schedule interviews, and more.

Where does candidate relationship management software fit into the recruiting process?


Candidate relationship management software is an important part of the entire recruiting process , but it is especially important once a candidate has applied for a job and has been engaged by a recruiter. The software enables the recruiter to build meaningful experiences through their dashboard, so that the candidate has a smooth and memorable experience, whether they are hired or not.

Candidate relationship management software integrates with other software solutions, including recruitment marketing suites, communication tools like social messaging and text services, and HR tools like payroll software.

Why is candidate relationship management software important?


The purpose of candidate relationship management software is to create active pipelines of potential talent, so your company does not have to start from scratch every time there is a new job opening. By keeping passive talent engaged, you’ll be able to shorten time to hire periods when a job becomes available and you need it filled.

You’ll also be able to represent your brand more effectively and improve your reputation among the job-seeking community. This is an important step, as candidates can now review their hiring and application experiences with companies online.

What to look for in candidate relationship management software


When searching for candidate relationship management software, prioritize those solutions that can integrate seamlessly with your existing communication tools. You should also look for a solution that is accessible by staff via mobile devices, as they may need to manage candidate relationships on the go.

Some solutions exist as part of an overarching suite of products that align to create a talent acquisition platform. These types of platforms can help you manage the entire candidate lifecycle, from attracting candidates to managing candidate relationships and onboarding.

Best-in-class acquisition platforms and candidate relationship management tools allow you to communicate with candidates through their preferred channels. You should also be able to see and manage those communications through a single, unified dashboard.

Avoid any software that includes hidden costs or that requires you to implement a new computing infrastructure just to run them. Cloud-based solutions are the most versatile, as on-premise software must be updated manually, often at a cost.

iCIMS’ Candidate Relationship Management software


iCIMS can provide you with a comprehensive suite of talent acquisition tools that help you manage the entire recruiting process. Through an intuitive dashboard, you can manage your candidate relationships:

  • Seamlessly across multiple touchpoints,
  • Incorporate automation,
  • Personalization,
  • and AI-enabled sourcing

to shorten time to hire periods and build meaningful relationships with every candidate.

Learn how iCIMS can help you drive ROI

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