Fight for Feedback

As the market picks up - and evidence of the recruitment activity that we experienced here at Walker Dendle over the summer indicates that it most certainly will – the importance of giving constructive and meaningful feedback will be more relevant than ever.

So, it is with delight that I welcome Debut’s “Fight for Feedback” initiative to make it a legal requirement for prospective employers to provide feedback after an interview with a candidate… but also with a twinge of disappointment that this simple courtesy actually needs to be legislated on.

In a nutshell, the UK’s leading human resource and employment stakeholders have submitted an industry white paper to the DWP that calls for government to encourage all employers to share quality feedback with candidates after a face-to-face interview, to motivate job seekers and speed up the recruitment process, in a bid to give the labour market a boost. The paper also recommends the launch of a feedback accreditation scheme in a bid to promote recruitment best practice.

IIP, CIPD, Business in the Community, Federation of Small Businesses, O2, Fujitsu, Network Rail, EY & Cap Gemini are amongst the notable stakeholders and I, for one, applaud their backing of such an important campaign. Having been involved in recruitment for almost 30 years, I have been voicing my concerns (and frustrations) about the increasing lack of feedback at any point of the hiring process; not just at the interview stage. It never ceases to amaze – and frustrate me – that so many employers no longer seem factor in the benefit of feedback to all parties. This may, in part, be a by-product of the number of people typically involved in the hiring process these days, but in a generation where communication is, literally, at our finger tips, it seems that we have the means, but have lost the value of even a cursory response.

Feedback is vital. Of course, it should be constructive and positive. Not only does it help the candidate to handle potential rejection; it assists them to refine their goals or improve their offering next time around. Plus…… it helps your recruiter to finetune your requirements and, with such competition for top talent, this can only be a good thing. At the very least, it will ensure that the hirer is getting good value for money as we will be forced to focus on what your needs really are, rather than simply a cursory key word search on our extensive database!

As a conclusion, I, for one, would welcome compulsory feedback after an interview.  Feedback is powerful and research shows that holistic feedback outweighs the time that it takes to share.

But…. let’s not forget good old-fashioned courtesy.  In our experience, candidates and clients are one and the same so why adopt a different code of conduct depending on what seat you sit in? I’m a great advocate of the ethos of “do as you would be done by” ………

Lisa Dendle

September 2017