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Candidate experience - a detailed guide

Abhinav Agrawal

As the head of talent for your company, you know how important it is to attract and retain top talent. One key way to do this is by ensuring that candidates have a positive experience during the hiring process. This is where measuring candidate experience comes in.

Why Measure Candidate Experience?

Measuring candidate experience is important for a number of reasons:

  1. It can help you attract top talent. Candidates who have a positive experience during the hiring process are more likely to accept a job offer and stay with the company for a longer period of time.
  2. It can improve your employer brand. Candidates who have a negative experience during the hiring process are more likely to share their negative experiences with others, which can damage your employer brand.
  3. It can help you identify areas for improvement. By gathering feedback from candidates, you can identify areas of the hiring process that may be causing frustration or confusion, and take steps to improve them.
  4. It can help you stay competitive. With the war for talent heating up, it's more important than ever to ensure that your company is a desirable place to work. Measuring candidate experience can help you stay competitive by identifying what candidates value most in a potential employer.

How to Measure Candidate Experience

There are a number of ways to measure candidate experience, including:

  1. Surveys: One of the most common ways to measure candidate experience is through surveys. By sending a survey to candidates who did not ultimately work out, you can gather valuable feedback about their experience.
  2. Interview debriefs: Another way to measure candidate experience is by conducting debriefs with interviewers after each interview. This can help you identify areas of the hiring process that may be causing frustration or confusion for candidates.
  3. Candidate feedback forms: You can also gather feedback from candidates by including a feedback form at the end of each step in the interview process. This can be especially useful for candidates who were not selected for the role, as it gives them an opportunity to provide constructive feedback about their experience which they might not do at the end.
  4. Candidate focus groups: If you have a large number of candidates, you may want to consider conducting focus groups to gather feedback. This can be a more time-intensive method, but it can provide valuable insights into the candidate experience.
  5. Social media: Finally, you can also gather feedback about the candidate experience by monitoring social media channels for mentions of your company. This can help you identify any negative experiences candidates may have had during the hiring process.

Questions to Include in a Candidate Survey

Here are 10 questions to consider including in a candidate survey:

  1. Overall, how would you rate your experience of interviewing at our company?
  2. Did you feel well-prepared for your interviews? If not, what could we have done to better prepare you?
  3. Was the scheduling process for your interviews clear and convenient?
  4. Did you feel that the interviewers were knowledgeable about the role and our company?
  5. Were the interviewers respectful and professional?
  6. Was the length of the interview process appropriate, in your opinion?
  7. Were the questions asked during the interview relevant and useful for evaluating your fit for the role?
  8. Did you receive timely feedback about the status of your application?
  9. If you were not selected for the role, did you receive clear and constructive feedback about why?
  10. Would you consider applying to our company again in the future? Why or why not?
If you can't include too many questions in your survey - then the last question is probably the most important on whether the candidate would apply again or not!

Using the Candidate Survey to Improve Recruiting Operations

Once you've gathered feedback from candidates, it's important to use this information to make improvements to your recruiting operations. Here are a few ways to do this:

  1. Identify trends: Look for patterns in the feedback you receive. If multiple candidates mention the same issue, it's likely that it's a problem that needs to be addressed.
  2. Prioritize improvements: Not all issues will be equally important to candidates. To get the most bang for your buck, prioritize improvements based on the feedback you receive.
  3. Communicate with candidates: Keep candidates in the loop about any changes you make to the hiring process. This can help build trust and improve the candidate experience.
  4. Monitor progress: Regularly check in with candidates to see if the changes you've made have had a positive impact on their experience. This can help you identify any additional areas for improvement.


Measuring candidate experience is an important part of attracting and retaining top talent. By gathering feedback through surveys, debriefs, feedback forms, focus groups, and social media, you can identify areas for improvement in the hiring process and take steps to improve the candidate experience. By doing so, you can attract top talent, improve your employer brand, and stay competitive in the war for talent.

About Rocket

Rocket pairs talented recruiters with advanced AI to help companies hit their hiring goals and knows technology recruiting inside out. Rocket is headquartered in the heart of Silicon Valley but has recruiters all over the US & Canada serving the needs of our growing client base across engineering, product management, data science and more through a variety of offerings and solutions.

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