What to do when: your candidates are also your customers

‘Your candidates are your customers’ could not ring truer than in retail and hospitality. A negative candidate experience in the hiring process can mean that a candidate stops being your customer in the future, and losing customers can affect business revenue. In other sectors, a negative candidate experience is less likely to affect the bottom line; in retail and hospitality, it can and does. It’s as simple as that.

So, the case for improving candidate experience in retail and hospitality is clear…

It should go without saying that you want candidates who are also customers to have a positive experience when applying for a job with you; treat them right in the hiring process and they’ll stay customers in the future. Further to that, though, is the fact that a positive hiring experience also makes them more likely to tell friends and family about your brand. A positive candidate experience not only retains them as customers, but can also turn them into brand influencers, whether they’re successful in getting the job or not. The question, then, is: how can you improve and guarantee a positive candidate experience in your recruitment process?

Chemistry, Pizza Hut and positive brand experience

Since 2015, Chemistry has been working closely with Pizza Hut, totally transforming its recruitment process and creating a much more positive experience for its applicants. This is particularly important for Pizza Hut because it attracts a young demographic by default; its applicants are very likely to be customers. Pizza Hut also recognises that it is in a position to offer people their first jobs, their first opportunity to be brilliant, so is extremely keen for its recruitment process to look past previous experience and simply find the candidates who would be the best fit for them, culturally – after all, first-time job applicants might not have relevant (if any) previous experience. Disregarding applicants with a perceived ‘lack of experience’ would be a huge oversight and wasted opportunity for a brand like Pizza Hut, shutting down the talent pool when they could be doing the opposite.

Goodbye CVs, Hello What Great Looks Like

When our hiring tool went live in May 2016, Pizza Hut completely removed CVs from its recruitment process and focused simply on assessing values, motivations and behaviours – the things that would give a much more accurate view on how a candidate aligns to Pizza Hut’s culture, as opposed to the ‘experience’ of being a waiter/waitress before. These are the things that define What Great Looks Like (WGLL™) in a Pizza Hut employee. Crucial to this system of recruitment is a sound training and development plan; the fact that Pizza Hut could adopt it speaks volumes about their ability to get people up to speed on the job quickly.

Improve candidate experience, keep them as customers

Recruiting in this way dramatically improves a candidate’s experience of your brand, which couldn’t be more important than when your candidates are also your customers. Not only is the Chemistry approach to hiring fundamentally fairer, giving everyone an opportunity to be brilliant regardless of whether they have previous experience, but it also provides candidates with instant feedback in the form of a candidate report, automatically generated once their values, motivations and behavioural assessments have been completed. Candidate reports give a candidate unique insight into his/her individual profile and into how that would manifest itself in a working environment – which, frankly, is a nice, useful thing to have.

Candidate experience can also be improved by a quick, easy and smooth application process. Chemistry’s tool delivers this by being seamlessly integrated within a brand’s existing HR technology. We know that this practical side of the process plays a part in improving candidate experience because we’ve done the maths: 90% of applicants across 31 countries and 15 languages have reported higher engagement with the brand and a higher commitment to completing their application when using Chemistry’s assessments. When your candidates are also your customers – and there’s a good chance they are if you’re in retail or hospitality – those are the kind of guarantees you want.

May, 18, 2017