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5 ways you can keep applicants engaged

Posted about 1 month ago by Lara Lee
Recruitment Insight

With the big day fast approaching, December is historically a difficult month in recruitment as candidates turn their attention towards festivities. With job seekers more likely to drop out of process during December, it’s important that businesses do all they can to retain and keep applicants engaged in the recruitment process.

5 ways you can keep applicants engaged

1- Communicate

An applicant’s biggest criticism whenever they drop out of a process is that they weren’t communicated with enough.


Leaving long periods between communication sends red flags to the candidate, especially when they’re interviewing with other companies. This can lead to them questioning their interest in a role, and pulling out of the process entirely if it’s been too long since they’ve had contact.

We’re not saying that hiring businesses need to keep them in the loop at every second of the day, but communicating when they expect interviews to take place or acknowledge receipt of an application, it can go a long way to making candidates feel valued and engaged with the recruitment process.

2 -Avoid lengthy interview processes

A lengthy interview process, especially for more junior level roles, can not only reduce an applicants interest but also leaves them open for a competitive offer with a company who’s hiring faster.

We normally advise businesses against doing anything more than a 2 stage interview process if they’re looking to contain the recruitment strategy within an efficient timeframe.


3 - Promote your culture


More candidates than ever are dropping out of interviews because they’ve either heard about a company’s negative reputation or have been attracted to a company with a strong employer brand.

The internet is both a best friend and foe here.

And having positive employee reviews, a strong social media campaign which highlights your employer brand and culture can help massively when it comes to applicant attraction and retention.

We’ve also written about the impact and solution to having a negative employer brand online, if you’re interested in another article of ours.

4 - Be transparent

There’s nothing worse than when applicants get to interview and discover either the salary doesn’t meet their expectations, the job isn’t what’s been advertised or benefits such as working from home have changed since they applied.

Being transparent about what is being offered from step 1, the job advert, is just as important for setting expectations around a role as the interview. Failing to ensure this can result in applicants dropping out during early interview stages, even if the advert performed well.

A couple of tips from us:

  • Be clear about salary - Jobs which advertise a bracket historically get more applications than those who don’t.

  • Offering working from home/flexible working benefits - be 100% clear on what is being offered and try not to change the plan before interview.

  • Outline basic responsibilities of the role in a few bullet points - a never ending list can detract attention and open the path for confusion.

  • Outline expectations around what skills a person will need to be successful within the business.

5- Show commitment

By following the above candidates will get a strong impression that businesses are committed to the hiring process, and will then gain the trust in a company which is necessary to having an offer accepted.