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How to Responsibly Reject Health Care Candidates

01-23-2024

Sending out rejections is one of the most sensitive moments in the candidate funnel. Getting rejected is already disappointing. But if an applicant doesn’t get a response, they’ll remember you as an unresponsive employer with a poor approach to rejection and may feel extra hurt that their time wasn’t valued.

Now, fast forward two years. That same candidate has gained experience and become the perfect fit for one of your open positions. You reach out, but they remember you as an employer who didn’t respect their time – when in reality, you were just swamped with hiring tasks.

How could you have handled this situation differently while still preserving your time? Personalized rejections can eat up your day, but they don’t have to. Here’s how to send a rejection without burning bridges – or burning yourself out.

The Importance of Handling Rejections Thoughtfully
Candidates Evolve and Develop

Just because you say no to a candidate once doesn’t mean that they’ll never be the right fit. You may reject someone who couldn’t work the hours you needed, only to find that their availability has changed the next time you reach out.

In addition, their qualifications may have changed. Over time, a candidate may gain more experience or become certified in additional skills. A candidate who wasn’t a good fit the first time around may be perfect for a role right now.

Stay Ahead in the Hiring Process

Since you already have your unsuccessful candidates’ contact information, you can get in touch with them quickly when you need to fill an open position. And these candidates have already expressed interest in your company; you don’t have to foster awareness from scratch.

Enhance Your Standing as an Employer

Kind and timely rejections can boost your standing as an employer. As more candidates apply to your open roles and have an excellent candidate experience, you’ll develop a reputation as a communicative employer.

Move Candidates Down the Applicant Funnel

When candidates receive personalized and thoughtful rejections, they are more likely to opt into your talent network or express interest in future openings. This keeps a pool of potentially qualified candidates engaged with your company, reducing the time and effort needed to source candidates for future roles.

Navigating Rejections with Tact and Respect

How can you turn down candidates while still establishing a solid rapport? Here are five strategies.

1. Provide Timely (and Compassionate) Rejections

It can be extremely frustrating for candidates to wait to hear from a company for ages, only to be met with a form rejection. That being said, sending a rejection email at all can put you ahead of other companies that simply ghost their candidates. Sending warm and personable emails is even better.

You can completely change how candidates view your organization by sending timely responses. Far too few companies stay in touch. In fact, Indeed reports that 77% of job seekers were ghosted by a prospective employer over the course of a year. Sending personalized rejection emails is important, but it can be taxing and time-consuming. Look for an applicant tracking system that offers easily tailored communication templates to get the best of both worlds.

2. Customize Emails When Relevant

A personalized email can go a long way, priming a candidate for future communications and letting them know that you actually reviewed their materials. If you get back in contact, then these candidates will remember that you took the time to give their emails that personal touch.

It’s especially important to send personalized emails to candidates that you interviewed, all of whom put a lot of time and effort into their applications. Viventium Recruiting powered by Apploi offers message templates that you can easily customize, so you can offer a personalized rejection without a huge investment of time.

3. Solicit Input on the Candidate Journey

There’s a difference between being rejected and feeling disposable. Simply offering your applicants a feedback form or a place to share their thoughts can show them that you care about improving their experience – even if they didn’t get the job.

Candidate surveys can give you crucial feedback on the candidate experience. Maybe your response times aren’t short enough or your application is confusing. Without a survey, you may never know.

Keep in mind that these surveys should be fairly controlled and brief. A candidate who has been rejected might appreciate that they have the option to provide carte blanche feedback. But they probably won’t want to spend a large chunk of time offering feedback to a company where they won’t be working. You may get disgruntled responses if you ask too much of your rejected candidates.

4. Consider a Phone Call for Candidates in Advanced Stages

A phone call is much more personal than an email and can be particularly meaningful to someone who has spent a lot of time getting to know your company. Because phone calls take more time and effort than an email, they are best saved for candidates who you want to encourage to reapply.

Keep in mind that rejection phone calls can be delicate affairs – a candidate may be emotional and might expect that a call means they’re about to receive a job offer. In order to have the best outcome for a rejection phone call, try the following:

  • Get to the point quickly: Don’t string your candidate along. Let them know right away, after you identify yourself, that they didn’t get the job.
  • Be personal: Reading from a script can be the easiest way to make sure the conversation doesn’t get off track, but avoid sounding like a robot. Use the candidate’s name, pause for questions, and generally try to make the conversation as personable as possible.
  • Be prepared to offer feedback: If this candidate was considered closely enough to receive a phone rejection, then they may also feel comfortable asking for feedback. Be prepared with specific feedback about why they weren’t the right fit for the job – and mention anything that you particularly appreciated about their application.

5. Inform Prospective Candidates of Upcoming Job Opportunities

Keep rejected candidates in the loop about future job openings. Don’t over-contact them or send them information about jobs that don’t fit their interests. Make it easy for candidates to opt in for (or opt out of) communications with you – you don’t want to feel like a nuisance. You’ll be surprised at how many candidates come back to new open roles with more experience than when they applied the first time.

Viventium Recruiting and Applicant Tracking Powered by Apploi

The right tools can help you move candidates down the application funnel smoothly and without incident. Viventium Payroll and Viventium Recruiting powered by Apploi gives you the tools to find top candidates, make an offer, and bring them on board before the competition gets a chance.

Interested in learning more? Reach out for your free, personalized demo.

 


This information is for educational purposes only, and not to provide specific legal advice. This may not reflect the most recent developments in the law and may not be applicable to a particular situation or jurisdiction.

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REPEAT CHORUS
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