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What does a successful recruitment team boil down to? Is it about securing the best candidates at the highest speed and lowest cost? That could be one way of looking at it. 

Different companies have different definitions of success, as well as different priorities. Some companies may prioritize a strong employer brand, while others focus on leveraging new technology to shorten the recruitment process. 

It’s important for a recruitment team to keep track of operational metrics, such as offer acceptance rate, time to hire, cost per hire, or quality of hire. These are always good to track and reflect on, and they provide a useful and concise overview of your recruitment operations. 

There are also 3 main ingredients that help decide your recruitment team’s success, but these are often not discussed enough. If you manage to keep all 3 of them above industry benchmarks, not only will you excel in recruiting, but you’ll also see the rest of your operational metrics go up as well. 

These 3 ingredients are: happy candidates, happy hiring managers, and a happy recruitment team. 

In this article, we will explain how focusing on these three ingredients will result in your team’s success. We’ll also detail how you can track these metrics to get a data-driven understanding of just how well your recruitment team is doing. 

Having these metrics separated as distinct trackable KPIs will give you a good overview of your initial success. If you notice one or more of these is trending downwards, you know where you should focus on to stop the leak. If all three ingredients are healthy, according to industry benchmarks, then you’ll doubtless see a rise in all existing operational metrics.

Happy Candidates

Having happy candidates is indicative of an excellent process and shows that your recruiters carry out their jobs with care and empathy. Candidate Experience is a core metric to understand because it reflects on how all candidates - rejected, withdrawn, or hired - feel about your company after your recruitment process. 

A consistently high Candidate Experience benefits your talent pipeline in a multitude of ways. It increases offer acceptance rates, and ensures that your top candidates don’t withdraw as often. 38% of candidates say that a positive Candidate Experience makes them more likely to accept a job offer. 

It also helps to attract and retain higher quality talent, since 77% of happy candidates will share their experiences with their networks. This positive word-of-mouth will help to strengthen your employer branding, and makes your organization more attractive to potential future employees. This is a major benefit to your talent pool, considering that referrals are the best source of high--quality candidates.

Happy candidates will also benefit from higher initial motivation and excitement if their applications are successful. Candidate Experience is the first step of an employee’s journey with your organization, and starting off on the right foot helps boost employee engagement down the road.

Happy candidates are more likely to apply again, grow your pool of talent through referrals, and serve as positive ambassadors for your brand, even if they were rejected for a position. They’re more likely to refer friends, less likely to withdraw their applications, and are better suited to starting off strong than other candidates. All of this points towards a higher quality of hire, and a better chance of attracting top-tier talent.

Overall, candidates being happy with your recruitment process is a great sign, and speaks volumes about how your recruitment team treats future employees. That’s why we consider it as one of the key ingredients to a successful recruitment team.

How to Track Candidate Experience

Since Candidate Experience is so crucial to your recruitment outcomes, measuring it consistently and regularly is important. The best way to get tangible insights on your Candidate Experience is through the use of Candidate Experience feedback surveys, systematically sent out to all your candidates. 

These surveys are particularly important for rejected candidates, but each major group of candidates (rejected, withdrawn, or hired) should receive their own type of survey, tailored to their stage. If you’re not sure where to start, feel free to check out our extensive template gallery. 

Sending candidates a survey soon after they leave the funnel (3 - 4 days) is optimal, since the experience is still fresh, but the emotion is taken out of it. As a result, you’ll receive a lot of feedback and data from your candidates. This includes both quantitative and qualitative data, with a variety of different metrics.

The most important metric is cNPS, or Candidate Net Promoter Score. It describes how many of your candidates would recommend your company within their networks, and acts as a reliable overview of how happy your candidates are. 

As always, context matters, and cNPS can be better understood when compared to industry benchmarks. Our users are able to access Candidate Experience benchmark data by industry, providing a performance baseline. It also provides an understanding of what targets to set to make sure your candidates are happy with your process.

If you’d like to learn more about tracking Candidate Experience, then you may be interested in our blog, How to Measure Candidate Experience. 

Happy Hiring Managers

Hiring managers are the decision makers in the recruitment process, and ultimately will be the ones working most closely with new hires. As such, they are important stakeholders and their concerns should be noted and integrated into your understanding of recruitment success.

The benefits of happy hiring managers are also crucial to the recruiting process. 30% of bad hires are made because hiring managers are pressed for time, which ultimately wastes large amounts of time and money filling that position again. Smooth cooperation between recruiters and hiring managers makes both of their jobs easier, decreasing time to hire and raising quality of hire. 

Having a strong partnership between hiring managers and recruiters is one of the most important elements in an effective hiring pipeline, and it’s critical to your operations. Having happy hiring managers is a sign that your internal processes are smooth and efficient, and measuring it is key.

How to Track Hiring Manager Satisfaction

Just like with candidates, you can get an understanding of how hiring managers feel by leveraging hiring manager satisfaction surveys. The same principles apply, with distinct metrics. Instead of cNPS, you’ll want to focus on Hiring Manager NPS, as well as a plethora of other metrics that provide a holistic view of the collaboration between your recruiters and hiring managers. 

Remediating potential issues identified by your hiring managers will boost Hiring Manager NPS and, consequently, improve your processes, boosting your other operational metrics, too. For a more detailed explanation of how to do it, and why this matters, make sure to read our article on How to Measure Hiring Manager Satisfaction. 

Happy Recruiters 

Finally, one of the most important ingredients is the state of the recruitment team itself. Recruiter Experience is often overlooked, but it’s just as important as Hiring Manager and Candidate Experience when it comes to recruitment success. This isn’t limited to just recruiters, but all stakeholders in the team, including managers, coordinators, recruitment operations, and all other staff. 

Happy recruiters matter because of a simple truth: happiness drives performance. Satisfied employees are known to perform better, have increased retention rates, and will help drive all other metrics that we discussed. They’re 44% more likely to have an increased tenure, and will be more motivated to deliver an excellent experience to candidates and hiring managers alike. 

Consider the story of DocuSign, who identified low satisfaction in their team, and began to specifically overhaul their review structure and personal performance metrics. As a result, recruiter satisfaction rose by 24%, which caused a performance rise of a stunning 55%. DocuSign’s attrition rate dropped down to 0% - they didn’t lose a single recruiter that year. 

How to Track Recruiter Experience

As with our other groups, Recruiter Experience must be tracked and quantified by tangible metrics. This allows you to identify potential issues and tackle them before they begin to hinder the other gears in the recruiting process. 

Once again, Recruiter Experience Surveys are some of the best tools you can use to holistically understand how engaged your recruiters are, and what their grievances may be. Sending a quarterly Recruiter Experience Survey is a great way to understand where everyone stands.

A good general metric to pay attention to is rNPS, or Recruiter Net Promoter Score, which acts the same way as Candidate and Hiring Manager Net Promoter Scores. Besides that, other good areas to focus on are:

  • Workload 
  • Stress Level and Engagement
  • Relationship with Hiring Manager
  • Internal Recognition
  • Growth Opportunities and Mentoring
  • Opinion of Tech Stack
  • Achievability of Goals and Targets

Keep in mind that, as with other surveys, these should be personalized to the recipient’s role and expectations. To maximize the takeaways that these surveys provide, team members should be asked both role-specific questions, as well as general engagement and satisfaction questions. 

Once again, benchmarking your Recruiter Experience results helps you understand where you stand in regards to your competition, and gives you a good overview of how you’re doing. If your rNPS is above average, then you can rest easy knowing that your team is happy and productive 


To recap, there are a number of different approaches to making a recruitment team successful, but they rely on the three ingredients needed for a successful recruitment team. Having happy candidates, happy hiring managers and happy recruiters is the key to recruiting success, and boosts your recruitment process in a large variety of ways.

It’s important to mention that all of these elements are interwoven: happy recruiters will work better with hiring managers, which boosts their satisfaction and improves your processes. Both groups also heavily contribute to a positive Candidate Experience. 

All three groups being satisfied will raise all other operational metrics, and help secure recruitment success for your team. Being able to measure and benchmark cNPS, rNPS, and Hiring Manager NPS will help give you a good overview of where your team stands. If one of these is lagging behind, you can investigate further and determine what has to be done. 

Thankfully, we can help with properly leveraging these 3 ingredients. Starred automatically collects and analyzes survey data from all relevant parties, complete with visualization through dedicated dashboards. Our dashboards automatically process your data and provide you with actionable takeaways at a glance, concisely describing which areas of your recruitment process could use some attention. Feel free to book a demo with us, and we’ll be happy to tell you more. 

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