Treating Job Applicants with Respect

4817794989_06a4053d4e

At Zemanta, we're still in hiring mode, since we are looking for a junior data integration engineer. While the importance of making hiring number one priority and moving fast is often mentioned in the literature on engineering management, I haven't seen much discussion about treatment of the other 95% of people that apply for a job position and at the end aren't joining your team. In my opinion, the way a company treats job applicants with less stellar resumes speaks volumes about company culture. For me, the respectful treatment of a job applicant starts with the first conversation over the phone. I first introduce myself and then I introduce Zemanta, since quite often applicants have a very vague idea of what we're doing. I follow the introduction with a quick overview of our hiring process and then I let the applicant ask questions first. If I'm not the first contact with the applicant, I only introduce myself but I still give the applicant an option to ask questions first. When asking questions myself, I try to ask open-ended questions where there's no right or wrong answer.

A large percentage of candidates entering the hiring process won't become members of your team but will be joining other companies. These people are one of the best way how to spread the word about your company in the engineering community. If your hiring process will make them feel as losers, they will keep their experience to themselves. But if you treat them with respect, they might become one of your best sources of referrals.