Should Companies Pay Candidates for Their Time?

Should Companies Pay Candidates for Their Time?

Should companies pay candidates to interview for their open positions? According to career coach and business author Sue Ellson, candidates should receive compensation for interviewing. And based on a recent LinkedIn News poll, 25% of respondents currently agree. Job interviews ask a lot from applicants, including phone screenings, panel interviews, aptitude tests, and even taking time from work. And let’s be honest, some company’s hiring processes can take weeks or even months before they make a decision. Ellson’s argument is, “if there’s money in it, it might make everybody more accountable.” Basically, Ellson points out that if employers paid candidates for their time, it would cut down on wasteful interview activities and streamline the process.

However, before companies resort to paying candidates for their time spent interviewing, here are three other ways employers can improve their hiring processes and offer a better candidate experience.

Be transparent with candidates

Transparency throughout the hiring process will go a long way. Sharing details such as your company’s perks, WFH/hybrid policy, or even providing the salary range will significantly improve the interviewing experience and save all parties time, money, and opportunity costs. Transparency starts with the job description. You can share details often left out, such as benefits, salary range, perks, and insights into your company’s culture. These details are important to applicants and will help you narrow down your candidate pool before you even start interviewing. By sharing these features from the beginning, you will naturally weed out job seekers looking for something else. Plus, it will save both parties substantial amounts of time and resources.

Also, you can demonstrate transparency by sharing details such as the steps in the interviewing process and the hiring decision timetable. This clarity creates accountability for your hiring team to stay on track while informing candidates on the next steps of the process.

Streamline your hiring process

After your hiring team bolsters your transparency, it’s time to identify areas to simplify your company’s hiring process. Take a look at the last couple of years and calculate your time to fill (TTF) for your open positions. According to SHRM, the average time to fill is 42 days. This timeframe will depend on your industry, but if your company’s average TTF is well beyond this benchmark, it’s time to improve your process. You can do this by identifying steps that need to be restructured or even eliminated altogether. You can do this by transitioning to virtual interviews, using an ATS system to identify the most qualified applicants, or removing an entire step in your process. However you choose to streamline your hiring process, these actions will significantly improve your candidate experience.

Provide feedback to candidates

Finally, if you want to improve your candidate experience, you can provide feedback to your interviewees after the hiring process. It is very rare for a hiring manager to give feedback to candidates. Typically, applicants will receive a vague, auto-generated email when they are passed on. If a candidate wants feedback, they usually have to request it from the hiring manager, and it’s a toss-up if they ever receive a response.

So, if you want to show your appreciation for your interviewees’ time, take a moment to give them some feedback. Was a candidate missing a particular skill set? Did they not do a great job answering a specific question? Whatever the feedback is, take a few moments to share your thoughts, and it will go a long way. Providing some input will give your candidates valuable information to improve their odds of receiving an offer in the future.

Not interested in paying candidates to interview?

So, do you think that companies should pay candidates for their time spent interviewing? This is obviously a provocative idea, but it definitely should make you think about what you, as an employer, can do to improve your candidate experience. And if you are looking for more ways to streamline your hiring process, check out our client resources! There are hundreds of helpful tools, tips, and advice to build a better strategy for your hiring team.