How Does Candidate Experience Impact Your Employer Brand?

how to improve your candidate experience

Table of Contents

  • Jeff
  • February 14, 2022

“People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou

A huge amount of time and resources go into building a staffing agency’s employer brand, and for a good reason—employer branding is one of the most critical factors in acquiring the best professionals. Thus, staffing agencies aiming to employ, nurture, and retain a high-quality workforce must put in extra efforts to invest in their brand reputation. However, would employer branding be enough to attract top candidates? Where does candidate experience come in?

Employer Branding and Getting Top Talent

Employer branding has been a hot topic in recent years and defined in so many ways. It’s the process of positioning and promoting a company as the employer of choice to its desired target group. It answers the question: what about you will help get the best people?

However, the work does not stop there. You might have thought this at some point: candidates recognize my face and agree to meet me, but why don’t they want to work with me? It’s because candidate experience needs to be factored in. It can make or break your employer brand. 

Can Candidate Experience Alone Attract Top Talent? 

Employer branding gives your staffing agency the ability to send a message that working with you is the best possible career choice a candidate can make. Alternatively, candidate experience has the power to either support or disprove that message. 

On the contrary, your staffing agency might be able to provide a superb candidate experience but without a strong employer brand. It will be tough to engage with people who haven’t heard of you yet! People’s initial spark of interest comes from positive employer branding when they hear your brand name. 

Ultimately, you can’t have one without the other. These two essential facets of recruitment marketing are indispensable in getting people to check out the career opportunities you offer— regardless of where, when, and how they encountered your staffing agency. 

How Does Candidate Experience Affect Employer Brand? 

Imagine the phrase: “Work with FGH!” The employer brand screams fun! You may also assume that its employees get excellent benefits and are always happy. Now, picture the company not replying to job applications, not having a career page, and asking for 50 years of experience for any role.

Of course, that example is ridiculous, but you get the point. The scenario above only shows how candidate experience can either help or hurt your employer brand. According to a survey published by Forbes, 60% of job seekers have had bad candidate experience at some point, and 72% of those candidates shared that experience either online or with someone they knew. Unfortunately, three in five applicants quit the application process due to unsatisfactory candidate experiences.

The Glassdoor Effect

The disconnect between an employer brand and the candidate experience they provide can be seen in the phenomenon: “The Glassdoor Effect.” Glassdoor is a company feedback and rating site launched in 2007. It was brushed off as a platform where disgruntled employees air gripes about their managers and employers.

No one could have predicted that Glassdoor would achieve the success it now has. Millions of users posted honest yet sometimes brutal anonymous reviews of their experiences working as employees or applicants. Applicants who saw those posts have been wary of working for the companies mentioned and effectively made companies pause.

However, Glassdoor changed the way companies are run and HR policies are set. Initially, few people took into consideration the power of online platforms like Glassdoor and social networks. Today, people can now broadcast their candidate experience with agencies using social networks. 

The Big Ask On Candidate Experience Now

Candidate experience is the end-to-end process of what a candidate goes through during the complete recruitment process. It is how you make candidates feel through a series of interactions. If done correctly, a positive candidate experience allows your agency to keep the loyalty of your customers, generate new leads, increase your talent pool, and help you get the best candidates.

Over the past decade, the relationship between an employer and an employee has changed drastically. In today’s recruiting landscape, candidates hold the power which has rested on employers in the past. Providing satisfactory candidate experience is no longer an option but a business imperative. 

How to Improve Candidate Experience

Heeding the call of duty on making candidate experience a business imperative, it is upon recruiters and HR professionals to create or improve candidate experience strategies. Whether your company is new to the concept of job candidate journey mapping or is already working on ways to improve, here are six tips that are sure to help you:

  1. Optimize All Candidate Experience Touchpoints

Candidates need to feel they are engaging with intelligent company representatives and tech tools at every step of the recruitment process. Identify every touchpoint along the entire process, from brand discovery to job descriptions, online applications, interviews, job offers, all the way through onboarding. The key is to make sure individuals and tools in each recruitment step be well-maximized as agency brand ambassadors.

  1. Determine Areas for Improvement

Take stock of how your agency is doing in each area of the candidate journey. Pinpoint where you can make the biggest impact and all the resources necessary to improve. Look at your improvement efforts from different angles, such as technology efficiencies, processes improvements, brand communications, and human behavior.

  1. Scope Smart

Be intelligent about scoping. This is important since there can never be more resources than work to be done. Take timeframes and budget cycles into careful consideration. Think of your improvement efforts as a continuous program rather than a one-time project.

  1. Turn Negative Experiences Around

To turn negative experiences into positive ones, follow up on candidate feedback. It’s a good idea to collect feedback from rejected candidates since they can harm your employer brand. Have an anonymous conversation with them about their experience. This also gives you the added benefit of delivering a personalized message. Candidate feedback lets you have meaningful insights to improve your candidate experience. 

  1. Incorporate Human Touch into Your Candidate Experience

Start thinking of your candidates first and your brand second. Provide a candidate experience that adds value and is made for your candidates. Candidates willingly give out so much of themselves in the recruitment process. So, when they get nothing in return, it can be disheartening. In a time when the candidate experience is becoming more digitized, the human touch is a vital element that will make your agency stand out.

  1. Get Help

Get fresh ideas from staffing professionals and access to industry expertise. If you need a set of fresh eyes to help your staffing agency identify pain points, try reaching out to trusted and reliable growth marketing agencies.


We at Allied Insight can help you find the right balance between building strong employer branding and delivering an exceptional candidate experience. We want to empower you to get both of them right. 

Allied Insight is a fractional CMO and growth marketing company specializing in leveraging the best practices of recruitment marketing, inbound marketing, SEO, lead generation, account-based marketing, and sales enablement. 

In today’s competitive market, we can deliver strategic marketing solutions to help your staffing agency realize its full potential. Connect with us today! 


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