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    Hiring Restaurant Hiring | 4 min read

    When (and how) to give candidates feedback

    Giving job candidates quality feedback is immensely valuable to the candidate and the organization. But, it’s rarely done well (if at all). 

    The stark reality is that 75% of candidates never hear back from potential employers after applying for a job. This means candidates are being ghosted by potential employers at an alarmingly high rate. 

    There’s no question that it can be difficult for some district (DMs) and general managers (GMs) to give feedback to candidates after they’ve been rejected for the position—especially given the demands on their time. And, on top of that, sharing bad news with people (even when coupled with positive feedback) isn’t enjoyable. But whether the feedback is positive or negative, it’s important that you and your team prioritize timely and respectful communication with your candidates. It’s critical to your restaurant’s reputation and long-term hiring success.

    When should you give job candidates feedback?

    1. In preparation for interviews

    A great opportunity to give candidates feedback is right from the get-go, by providing guidance on several aspects of the interview they may be curious about. For starters, most candidates will be curious about what kinds of questions they might be asked. It can be helpful and productive for both parties if you share some of these questions with candidates before the interview. This allows them to bring to the interview examples from their professional lives that they can share with you. Sharing some of the questions in advance also shows candidates that you care about their success during an interview, which they will appreciate. 

    In addition to providing some of the interview questions, it’s also helpful to address the small, practical details of their interview. It may seem insignificant, but it means a lot to candidates to receive guidance on how to dress for the interview, what they should bring and where they should go to meet the hiring manager. It’s also a great idea to use professionally written, automated text messages for interview reminders for candidates so that you can cut down on no-shows and put a tech-savvy foot forward for your brand.

    2. During status updates

    As candidates progress through the hiring process, keep them updated on what’s happening behind the scenes. Be sure to let them know how they did in their interview. The longer candidates go without hearing from you, the less interested they become. Worse yet, if candidates haven’t heard back from you with next steps, they may simply move on to your competitor down the street. 

    If there is a next step in the hiring process on the horizon, be sure to give the candidates an approximate timeline. The more informed and up-to-date candidates are with your brand, the more likely they will remain responsive and engaged in the process. To easily manage the large number of status updates you have to send out during the hiring process, use an automated hiring technology that does the heavy lifting of notifications for you.

    3. Once a final decision has been made

    The time has finally come to make the decision on whether to hire the candidate. It’s very important to give all candidates feedback at this point regardless of whether they got the job.

    For candidates you don’t end up hiring, it is imperative to handle these communications with a degree of delicacy. Remember, these candidates could apply again in the future, they can influence other candidates in your community and some might even be customers at your restaurant. The last thing you want to do is burn a bridge by not giving feedback or giving feedback that is unthoughtful or even hurtful.

    When giving feedback to candidates you don’t hire, make sure you have a balance of positive feedback as well as constructive. Additionally, make sure you communicate how much you appreciate the time and effort they invested into the hiring process with your team. 

    For candidates you do hire, provide them with a balance of positive feedback and areas for improvement too. You should clearly express a spirit of excitement and eagerness for them to join your team. At the same time, you should begin to prepare them for the realities of how they will need to improve to ensure they can succeed at your restaurant.

    Set your QSR apart from the competition with robust feedback

    With many QSRs neglecting the feedback loop during the hiring process, you have an opportunity to gain an advantage in the highly-competitive job market. 

    Even if your DMs and GMs haven’t made a final decision on whom to hire, make sure you have a system in place for sending text messages to keep your candidates engaged. The waiting periods between interviews or assessments are great opportunities to share compelling content with candidates on brand values, information about the culture of the team or goals for the restaurant for the coming year.

    As a VP of operations, how do you know if your DMs and GMs are giving candidates enough feedback during the hiring process? One of the best ways to find out is by conducting a routine survey with your candidates during the hiring process. The surveys will reveal the strengths in your hiring process—and areas you can improve in partnership with your DMs and GMs. A survey is also a good way to gauge how professional your restaurant’s hiring process is from candidates’ point of view.

    If you’re ready to set your QSR apart from the competition and step up your feedback game with your job candidates, Workstream is here to help! Contact us today to learn how our powerful, automated hiring platform will help your brand reach its hiring goals.

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