The Ultimate Guide to Candidate Experience

CHAPTER 5

Candidate Experience Feedback: Manual vs. Automated

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Some of you are already gathering feedback. But are you doing it correctly?

Some prefer manual, some automated methods. The difference? Let me explain.

Manual is an expression that refers to the manual collection and/or analysis of feedback. Manual gathering of data is still very frequent, as it requires no other investment than your time. Manual analysis is more difficult to encounter in the talent acquisition scene. It requires more intense efforts.

There's the rarer and rarer belief that manual collection is cheaper than automated. Other reasons for people to prefer this to its automated counterpart could be the lack of capacity for building an integration. Some other time, no integration is possible: the software the company is using is too outdated to have an open API

Finally, customers might choose the manual method because they are not aware of the possibilities or benefits of automation.

Normally, when feedback is collected manually, then uploaded in a determined software, the process is less hectic than the one at the beginning of the automation process but maintains the same level of complications throughout.

Usually, with Manual, the recruiter or talent acquisition specialist, will distribute surveys every once in a while. It can have a regular frequency, such as monthly or yearly. Mostly these surveys are created on Google Forms, Type Form or SurveyMonkey.

The data is then collected and analyzed. If the analysis is manual, the results will normally only be scratching the surface. Analyzing big bundles of data through SaaS will indeed bring more specific and detailed reports.

When the process is entirely automated, the account administrators can draft their whole feedback process. They have to design the surveys, pick a sender name and decide which actions will activate them. This makes it so that the first phase, of about 2 or 3 months, is usually quite hectic but then leads to a greater level of ease in the near future.

Automating your feedback means using software to collect it and analyze it. It can have several advantages, as mentioned in our article 6 Reasons Why Recruiters Need to Automate Measuring Candidate Experience.

It will help you, first of all, save time. Time that you can spend doing your actual job. It will also help you save money. The hours of work it takes for a human to take care of feedback collection and analysis make manual an expensive choice.

It will, finally, help you avoid human error. Accidentally moving a row in an Excel sheet can mean addressing all candidates with a wrong name. This, as you can imagine, would not help their candidate experience!

Automated feedback is gathered continuously, not just on a monthly or yearly basis. This allows you to react faster to your candidate's pain points. It also has a higher level of specificity. As previously mentioned, full manual analysis can typically only scratch the surface.

Furthermore, when you automate, the surveys are triggered by actions, if you are using an Applicant Tracking System. This adds context and punctuality to your surveys. Last but not least, automating allows you to send surveys to all the candidates that applied to jobs at your company or through your agency, from all parts of the process, instead of just a few. Its cruciality for a proper candidate experience effort stands to reason: automating makes the results you gather less biased, as cherry-picking would inevitably alter your statistical pool’s characteristics.

Since you will collect plenty of data, automation can provide you with very helpful dashboarding tools, too.

Automation also lets you personalize your process of gathering feedback for candidate experience. To get a more in-depth and constantly updated view on how their business is doing in terms of CE, some recruitment agencies are asking for premium features such as a recruitment matrix, displaying a ranking of the agency’s recruiters and its criteria. They could be ranked, for example, on the basis of the cNPS they get, their speed of response, their impressions, their post-application feedback and so on. Visualizing your results can let you reach your insights in a glimpse.

In this chapter, we have compared manual and automated methods for gathering and analyzing data. We’ve shown how automation is cheaper, saves you time, helps you avoid human error and provides you with less biased results. Furthermore, automation allows you to add some extra features such as a dashboard or the recruitment matrix. In the next chapter, we will explain how you can implement a feedback process and how you can integrate it into your Applicant Tracking System or Candidate Relations Management software.