Recruiter conducting a candidate-driven interview.

It’s no secret that the hiring process can be a harrowing experience—both for companies and candidates. 

For employers, considering the time and effort that goes into finding the right people to add to the team, getting hiring right is mission critical. And for candidates, having the chance to put their best foot forward can make or break an opportunity that just might land them their dream job.

Interviews are a pivotal part of the hiring journey, so much that 83% of candidates say a negative interview experience can change their perception about a company. Likewise, 87% of candidates say a positive interview experience can change their perception on a company they once doubted. 

In our recent Candidate Experience Survey, we delved deeper into candidate experience best practices. We found that a vast majority of candidates want to lead the interview by showcasing their skills. We also found that 87% of interviewers agree that candidate-driven, strength-based interviews are more effective than traditional employer-based interviews. 

But why? Let’s take a look. 

Scheduling the Interviews

All too often, the first stumbling block in the interview process is scheduling. A cumbersome scheduling process can lead to weeks of back-and-forth emails, reschedules, and cancellations. In fact, our data shows that HR leaders spend more than one-third of their time scheduling interviews.

Finding a suitable time for two or more busy professionals to sync their calendars is a challenge—but it doesn’t have to be that hard.

By flipping the model on its head and switching to candidate-driven interviews, interview scheduling can be seamless. For example, automated interview scheduling can allow candidates to choose a time that fits into their schedule, without going through a recruiter! 

Then, once the candidate chooses their preferred time, they’re automatically sent a calendar invite that includes specific, personal details about their interviewer.

Finally, follow up is made easy when automatic SMS and email reminders are sent in advance, confirming every piece of information the candidate needs.

Interviewing Candidates 

So the candidate has self-scheduled their interview. What’s next?

It’s possible to extend this candidate-driven approach to the actual interview. In a traditional, company-driven interview, the interviewers drive the conversation. Ultimately, this confines the conversation only to what the interviewers want to know, failing to give candidates an opportunity to showcase their experience.

But with candidate-driven interviews, everybody wins. While candidates show off their skills and creativity, interviewers receive deeper insights into candidates’ mindset and motivation.

Feedback From Candidates

Truth: feedback makes everyone better.

In a traditional, company-driven approach, interviewers often provide feedback to candidates. But as part of a candidate-driven approach, candidates get a chance to share feedback on their experience, too. After all, no one can provide better insights into your hiring process than those that experience it firsthand!

This can be invaluable to companies, as it empowers hiring leaders to improve things like weak communication, biased behaviors, or misaligned expectations—benefiting them (and future candidates) for years to come.

The Bottom Line

It’s pretty simple. A key component of a remarkable candidate experience is letting the candidates themselves guide the interview process. 

Candidate-driven interviews not only make each step more efficient and productive, but also more enjoyable. The end result? Candidates who are better prepared for their big day, and interviewers who are better equipped to determine great job-fit.

It’s time to make a shift toward candidate-centered, connection-driven interviews.

To read more about how to make that happen for your team, download 5 Steps to Hiring Top Talent at Scale.