Employer Branding Talent Acquisition

How do you Measure Candidate Experience?

There are many websites which list the best companies to work for based on the candidate experience – Glassdoor probably being the most popular one. But just how is candidate experience measured? Is it a tick-box exercise or is it more in-depth than that?

This week our expert panel share their thoughts on how they think candidate experience should be measured.

Katrina Kibben

There are a ton of metrics and data points you can pull but the best data you’ll get is through open-ended surveys. Listening to what people say and how they say it. Every hiring team should spend time reading this data to evolve their process.

Katrina Kibben is the CEO and Principal Consultant at Three Ears Media.

Kevin Grossman

The only way to know what they feel about their candidate experience is to ask them with feedback surveys. There are key metrics that we use to measure candidate experience with the Talent Board benchmark research program. These include what the candidates’ overall rating of their experience is, whether or not they will apply again, refer others or make purchases if and when applicable. There are a lot more benchmarks we capture every year, but these are the key metrics we look at with employers.

Kevin Grossman is President of Global Programs at The Talent Board.

Lori Sylvia

The employers that are measuring candidate experience today are doing it mainly with surveys, which is good for ratings and anecdotal feedback. I’m seeing net promoter score being used more and more, which will tell you how a candidate feels about your company, but it’s not good for knowing what your candidate experience is actually like. There’s new technology available that will measure the actual candidate experience in terms of interaction with all your recruiting touchpoints and especially the flow of your careers site and application process. So you can measure both, is the experience working and how do candidates feel about their experience.

Lori Sylvia is the Founder and CEO of Rally Recruitment Marketing.

Manuel Heichlinger

The nature of candidate experience makes it very hard to measure in an objective way. But there are certainly some good indicators as to whether your candidate experience is up to scratch. Offering lots of roles without much take-up? This would suggest the interview experience is a negative one. Research has found that 65% of candidates say a bad interview experience makes them lost interest in the job. And this can have a negative knock on effect on overall recruitment numbers- as 1 in 4 candidates who have a negative application experience would dissuade someone else from applying to the same company.

Similarly, if you are a recruiter who is having little luck receiving responses on LinkedIn, it might be worth taking the time to personalise your InMails, as we have found that acceptance rates for bulk InMails are 15% below average.

Manuel Heichlinger is LinkedIn’s Senior Manager for Talent Acquisition.

Jeanette Maister

Ask them in-person and be upfront about how you do it. Because the candidate experience is never ending, it’s important to always be improving. The only way to improve is to take the advice from those who have been through it. Run surveys after every interaction and gauge moods. Have constant dialogue to find out what’s working and what’s not doing so well. The more evidence you can get, the better the candidate experience you can continue to deliver in future cycles.

Jeanette Maister, is Head of Americas at Oleeo (formerly WCN).

Josh Tola

There are a number of ways you can measure the candidate experience. A simple way is to perform a NPS survey on the candidates that engage in your hiring process. The only issue with this is that it doesn’t capture the entire candidate experience as the candidate is only thinking about their direct interactions with your company.

On the front end of the candidate experience, you should be looking at statistics such as conversion rates on your careers page (e.g. Viewed careers page > Applied to job) or conversion rates on the job ads themselves.

Josh Tolan is the CEO of Sparkhire.

Aida Fazylova

XOR measures our candidate’s experiences through surveys. We surveyed more than 10,000 applicants a couple of months ago. Based off of the responses we received, 93.3% rated their experience as excellent, 6% rated us good, and 0.7% rated us as poor. We’ve learned candidates who had a negative experience with your hiring process are more likely to spread their thoughts, while candidates with a positive experience are more likely to give referrals. We can use the data gathered from these surveys to change what’s not working and improve upon what is.

Aida Fazylova, CEO and Founder, of

Benjamin Gledhill

We carry out both qualitative and quantitive surveys to all candidates at various points of the hiring lifecycle to ensure we gain both an accurate picture throughout rather than a one off instance.


Benjamin Gledhill is the Head of Resourcing at Yodel.

Jill Shabelman

There are many ways to measure candidate experience from pulse surveys during the recruiting process, to formal feedback surveys sent at the completion of the process, to sentiment shared through public, online forums.  Some recruiting metrics such as cycle time, accept rate and likelihood to refer (promoter score) may also correlate to candidate experience measurement. All can provide insight into areas your organization can address either immediately or over time. The problem usually isn’t a lack of data or inputs, it’s in finding the meaning in it all and understanding the essential pieces of the experience that need the most focus.

Jill Shabelman is the Employer Brand & Marketing Manager at Deloitte Services LP.

Chris Murdock

Only 1 in 4 employers ask candidates for feedback on their interview process after closing remarks have been made, yet 72% of candidates who had a poor candidate experience will report it online or within their own circles. This greatly harms your employer brand for those researching your company in the future for available positions you’re looking to fill. Before you end a conversation with a candidate, send them a quick feedback survey asking what they liked, didn’t like, and how the whole process could be improved.

Chris Murdock is Senior Partner and Co-Founder at IQTalent Partners.

By Ushma Mistry

Editor & Content Strategist at Link Humans, download our new eBook now: Measuring Employer Brand: The Ultimate Guide and check out our latest product The Employer Brand Index.