February 21, 2023

Candidate Engagement: An Ultimate Guide to Engaging the Best

Candidate Engagement: Building Relationships Beyond the Resume

Candidate engagement is the interaction, involvement, and interest shown by recruiters of different agencies to the job applicants during and after the recruitment process to keep them engaged with the company. Recruiters continuously keep in touch with the candidates to either inform them about the next phase of the recruitment process or keep them aware of the aims and values of their organization. They also keep them updated about open roles and positions, what they're looking for, and what candidates can expect from them.

Finding Top Talent

2 Types of Candidate Engagement

There are two main types of candidate engagement:

Active Engagement

These are the candidates that are actively looking out for jobs. They express interest in the company or a specific job opening and are open to new opportunities. They proactively reach out to the employer and actively participate in the recruitment process. These are the candidates who:

  • Submit resumes
  • Reach out to the HR department or hiring managers with queries
  • Participate in interviews and discussions
  • Attend career fairs or open house events

Passive Engagement

These are the candidates that haven’t expressed any interest in your company so far. They are passively receiving information from the HRs but not actively participating in the recruitment process. They are not looking for a new opportunity but are willing to discuss it. You let them know about your company and provide some reasons why you’re reaching out and why this move would benefit them. Show them why your jobs are relevant to their experience and tell them which characteristics of their resume make them fit for the role. These are the candidates who:

  • Receive emails or newsletters from the company
  • Visit the company's career website
  • Follow the company on social media.

Passive engagement is essential as it keeps the company on the candidate's radar and may encourage them to become actively engaged in the future.


When is Candidate Engagement Necessary?

Essentially candidate engagement is important and should be done:

During the Recruitment Process

Keep your candidates engaged and not let them wondering about the next phase of the cycle. Inform them through emails, texts, and calls. Keep them updated.

Throughout the Year

Some HRs offer internships to potential candidates until the next hiring cycle to keep them engaged with the organization.

Effects of Candidate Engagement on the Candidates

The more the candidate engagement best practices followed, the greater the positive effects on the candidate. If they are well-treated and kept engaged during the whole recruiting process, they feel motivated to apply for the role. Thus, they put in more effort and show more enthusiasm. They prepare thoroughly for the interview, resulting in better performance and ultimately landing the job.

Effects of Candidate Engagement on the Organization

As mentioned above, candidate engagement leaves a positive impact on the candidates. The word-of-mouth spreads, leaving a positive impression of the company even if they do not end up getting the job. Engaged candidates who are hired are more likely to be committed to the company and stay with it for a longer time.

What Does Candidate Engagement Measure?

Candidate Engagement measures how well the candidates feel they were treated during the whole recruiting process.


  • In various surveys, the majority of job seekers – around 60%, have shown they received poor treatment during their job search.
  • A survey found that when job seekers have a poor candidate experience, 42% of them would never apply to that company again and 22% said they would advise other candidates not to work at that company.

Objectives of Candidate Engagement Strategies

To attract the best talent, it has become extremely important to build better relationships with candidates. Healthy candidate engagement can lead you toward gaining 999 possible individuals for other positions in your company. It is important as it:

Attracts the top talent: Increasing candidate engagement means a good candidate experience, creating a promising impression of the company, and making it more likely for bright candidates to accept a job offer.

Improves company reputation: Effective candidate engagement process can enhance the employer's brand and reputation, making it easier to attract future job applicants.

Increases retention: Engaging with candidates throughout the recruitment process can result in higher employee satisfaction and lower turnover rates.

Is cost-effective: Engaging with candidates earlier can help to avoid costly and time-consuming mistakes, such as extending job offers to unfit candidates. This means only qualified candidates remain in the loop.

Enhances decision-making: Employers can collect valuable information, by interacting with candidates, which can help in making informed hiring decisions.

Objective of Candidate Engagement

6 Ways to Create Candidate Engagement

Messaging: Send emails and text messages

Calls and Reminders: Verify the time and location for the interviews through calls or send them reminders

Web-Page Tracking: Track candidate behaviour on your website, kick-off campaigns and reach out to those who are actively looking for jobs.

Job Matching: Send relevant jobs to candidates.

Seminars and Career Fairs: keep them aware of your company's open positions, its aims, and values. Conduct tests and interviews at job fairs.

Give and Take Feedback: Listen to their views about the job or the company, keep them aware of the hiring stages, and also do let them know if they are rejected.

Ways to Carry Candidate Engagement

Who is Involved in Candidate Engagement?

There are two parties involved during the candidate engagement:

Recruiters and HRs: The main goal of recruiters and HR professionals is to ensure a comfortable and positive candidate experience. They manage the recruitment process and are often the first point of contact for candidates. They play a crucial role in engaging job seekers.

Candidates: Candidates play an active role in their engagement by offering interest in the open positions, asking queries, giving feedback, and staying engaged throughout the hiring process.

How can I Improve Candidate Engagement?

It is very important to have an effective candidate engagement and there is just one simple rule to it - give your candidates what they want!

The harder part of this is precisely understanding what they want.

When Does the Candidate Lose Interest or Feel Disappointed?

Here are 6 of the leading aspects where candidates feel unhappy and choose to disengage from recruiters:

  • Needlessly lengthy application processes.
  • Lack of communication.
  • No updates or follow-ups.
  • The hiring process is too long.
  • No confirmation emails.
  • No means to contact the recruiter.

How Can This be Improved?

Let your candidates know why, and when as soon as possible. Your job seekers want:

  • Better and more frequent communication.
  • Notifications of successful and unsuccessful applications.
  • Information about the next phase.
  • A timeline of the hiring process.
  • Human contact after the application.

Investigate your process, observe the shortcomings, and see which areas are your expertise.

6 Candidate Engagement Strategies that Might Help You

Multiple corporations are sending out online applications and reaching thousands of candidates, but how do you grab the attention of potential candidates? How do you engage them virtually? Following are some strategies that may help you engage your potential candidates:

1 - Create a sense of excitement in candidates about your company, roles, and culture, and get them eager about working for you.

2 - Keep your social media updated by posting frequently concerning your company culture, environment, activities, and work ethics.

3 - Confirm and notify at every stage by sending confirmation emails.

4 - Provide a hiring timeline and stick to it.

5 - Use chatbots and technology to fill impossible gaps. As chatbots are generally fed with common questions asked by the candidates and they keep them engaged even if the HR is not available.

6 - Feedback, feedback, and feedback: There are two categories of feedback during candidate engagement:

  • You give feedback: Give feedback about their performance after every stage. Candidates are 4x more likely to consider a company for a future opportunity when they receive constructive feedback.
  • You ask for feedback from candidates: You can also ask for feedback regarding the position, process, or company as it will help you improve your weak points.      
Candidate Engagement Strategies

What Else You Can do to Boost Candidate Engagement?

1 - Have them complete online personality assessments to evaluate for culture fit before applying.

2 - Use VR to show people around your office and different spots in your office.

3 - Throw a mixer where interested candidates can meet and get to know the personalities they are likely to be working alongside.

What are the Drawbacks if you Skip Candidate Engagement?

The feeling of being mismanaged or badly treated impacts both the candidates and the organization. There are so many points of the hiring process where applicants or candidates can feel forgotten, mistreated, and neglected; they'll only add to their distrust of your company.

To avoid poor word of mouth, destructive feedback, and a bad reputation, HR needs to make sure they don’t leave candidates hanging or feeling undervalued.

As mentioned above, how important it is to engage candidates throughout the hiring process and the hiring cycle. If not done accurately, it will have the following effects on the candidates:

1 - If they aren’t notified exactly about how much time it will take for the next phase in the hiring process, they will get frustrated and will eventually apply somewhere else.

2 - If not given proper feedback, they may not know why they were rejected and may share their negative experiences with others.

3 - If they keep on waiting for emails, they may feel that their time and efforts were not valued.

4 - If they are not contacted within mentioned time, they may get disappointed, feel that they are not being considered, and won’t proceed further.           

Frustrated Candidates

The Following are the Effects on the Company's Reputation if they Skip Candidate Engagement:

1 - If you don't engage with candidates, they may feel ignored or disrespected, which can result in a negative impression of your company and its brand.

2 - Low candidate engagement can lead to low candidate satisfaction, which can result in low employee morale and retention rates.

3 - By not engaging with candidates, you may miss the chance to hire top talent.

4 - Failing to engage with candidates, you may end up wasting time and resources on recruitment efforts that don't lead to successful hires.

In short, not engaging with candidates can harm your company's reputation, limiting your ability to attract top talent.


To hire potential candidates, it’s important to engage them after every hiring cycle or throughout the recruiting process, as it will leave a positive effect on the candidate ultimately leading to a positive company reputation. On contrary to that, keeping them hanging in the middle of the process, will result in poor feedback and a poor image of the company.                                          


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Hirecinch is one of the best applicant tracking system I have used ever, literally my my job easier

Hirecinch is one of the best applicant tracking system I have used ever, literally my my job easier

Hirecinch is one of the best applicant tracking system I have used ever, literally my my job easier

Hirecinch is one of the best applicant tracking system I have used ever, literally my my job easier

Hirecinch is one of the best applicant tracking system I have used ever, literally my my job easier

Hirecinch is one of the best applicant tracking system I have used ever, literally my my job easier