3 Common Concerns for Staffing Firms Considering an Ongoing Talent Engagement Survey Program

I work with staffing firms to administer client and candidate satisfaction surveys. As staffing firms are starting to place more of an emphasis on the candidate experience at their firms, we’re seeing a trend towards more frequent surveying that correlates with key touch-points throughout a given employment journey. But with a more frequent survey cadence comes new concerns.

But have no fear – there are resources that your firm can and should utilize to tackle talent satisfaction for growth. One such resource is a single metric known as the Net Promoter® Score, or “NPS®” for short (We’ll be talking to this concept quite a bit in this post so I encourage you to catch up on this blog to learn more about NPS and why it’s important for your talent survey initiative).

Below are 3 common concerns that we hear from staffing industry leaders questioning the implementation of an ongoing cadence for candidate feedback.

Concern #1: Pulling a contact list more than once a year

We know that putting together contact lists for your candidates can feel a bit like pulling teeth (for most it’s very time-consuming and requires you to bring in more than one team member).

I’m here to tell you that with the right process and communication pieces in place, this workload can be alleviated. By working closely with a number of staffing firms who measure candidate experience in an ongoing format, I’ve identified a handful of proven strategies you can execute on to make the process smoother for you, your team, and your candidates:

  • Communicate initiatives internally – make sure your team knows what data you will need and how often.
  • Collect smaller slices of data more often – breaking the data down makes it easier to digest and measure over time.
  • Tell your candidates beforehand – let them know when they can expect a feedback request.
  • Make survey responses a key metric and metrics a part of ongoing internal communication.
  • Share your results often – both internally and externally.

If candidates know when to expect a survey and why you’re asking for their feedback, and what you’re going to do with it, they are more likely to give you their honest and candid feedback. And not to mention – you will have a much cleaner ATS/CRM!

Concern #2: Over-surveying your candidates

This concern is incredibly valid, and can often be the deal breaker in whether or not a firm decides to take the pulse of their talent annually vs. after each engagement. Below are a few ways to avoid survey fatigue:

  • Pinpoint the right time to ask for survey feedback (hint: this is usually a time when engagement is high!)
  • Communicate your process – let your talent know when to expect a feedback request, why you’re asking for it, what you’re going to do with it, and how you will use their feedback.
  • Use technology to build in suppression rules – keep track of how often someone was surveyed and on which touchpoints, and prevent surveys from being sent to the wrong candidates.

Our industry research supports that your candidates are hungry for the engagement and opportunity to provide you with feedback – we see this when looking at the NPS of a staffing firm who does not survey (13%) compared to a firm that survey’s after each engagement/project (41%). So even though you might perceive your firm to be sending a lot of surveys, your candidates are eager for the engagement and the opportunity to provide you with feedback.

Concern #3: “I don’t have the resources to implement this process.”

Again – a valid concern, but the good news is there are resources that can help you navigate this process. My team is here to provide helpful resources throughout the entire process. We provide trainings to you and your team, and we use technology to build in suppression rules for your firm to avoid the survey fatigue of your candidates.

In case you’re still on the fence (and we wouldn’t blame you – an ongoing talent survey program is a huge endeavor) I thought I’d wrap up this post with an overview of just how far-reaching the benefits of gathering regular feedback from your candidates can be:

  • Operations – promptly address any issues with detractors
  • Marketing – celebrate and encourage promoters to help build your firm’s reputation
  • Personnel – share your talent’s feedback internally and recognize team members going above and beyond for your candidates
  • Sales/recruiting – incorporate feedback and testimonials from your NPS initiative for use in marketing collateral and sales conversations

The biggest missed opportunity we see when it comes to candidate surveys is focusing solely on identifying and resolving service issues. Keeping all of the potential benefits in mind and designing a survey program to fuel ROI across your firm will set you up for success.

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