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Latest Employer News from GradSift

May 2022


The Candidate Experience

Most recruiters do their best to deliver a positive candidate experience. But sometimes there are obstacles to overcome. Like dealing with technology, assessments or internal processes that aren't straightforward. Or coercing hiring managers to act promptly in decision-making. Or being forced to take short-cuts with candidates when they're just isn't enough time.

Despite the best intents, that's when it can lead to a poor candidate experience. In high volume graduate recruitment, it's not just one candidate affected but many.

How much is a poor candidate experience contributing to fewer job applicants or job offers being turned down?

You would expect in a candidate tight market, recruiters would be going all out to deliver a great candidate experience. Not just for the candidate they’re trying to hire. But the ten other potential employees who will learn about the organisation from that candidate’s experience.

Here's a candidate example shared by my colleague Mary Scott, a US based graduate recruitment researcher.

They invited me for an interview but never got back to me with the date or invite. I consistently followed up with the recruiter and she gave me false hope by reassuring me that the date is still to be confirmed.

As the proposed month of the interview round drew near, she started ignoring me and I’ve not heard from her since Jan 4th. I’m happy I dodged a bullet but I’m extremely disappointed.

I mean, it’s clear that they filled the role but this was completely unethical and I really want my voice to be heard. “ [Candidate's emphasis]

Only last week I saw this on the Whirlpool graduate forum, students sharing experiences about employer “X”.

"I remember applying to them last year. I was told to come to the assessment center the following day and that I was to receive an email with the details. Afternoon rolls around with no email – queue the frantic calls to the HR rep. Eventually I call the main office at 4pm and was informed that the HR rep has already gone home.

I continue to call the HR rep through the week. I managed to get in touch with her about 2 weeks later, who informed me that the assessment center has already passed (Thanks?). She said there was a screw up within the "system" and she would get back to me regarding this issue. Unsurprisingly, she didn't."

The candidate was telling other students don't bother applying to Company X.

Recruitment Experience Reflects Culture
I've always held the view that the recruitment experience is a strong indicator of how much an organisation genuinely values people. It doesn't matter whether you're a student or senior executive. If the organisation wants to attract great people it should be going out its way to ensure a great candidate experience. If they don't, it's a reflection of their culture.

Other people have commented on this topic. "In this type of market it's these type of experiences that make or break the process. It's too competitive now and candidates are all getting amazing offers to work for amazing companies and often times it's the experience itself that makes the difference whether they join or don't!"

How much is a poor candidate experience contributing to fewer job applicants or job offers being turned down? There is definitely a causal relationship. When there are plenty of opportunities out there, students can choose to avoid the "known" bad experiences. Or when they reach job offer stage don't be surprised if a better candidate experience with another employer leads to a renege. You want to be that other employer!

US - Students Swamped by Job Postings

Australian employers are not alone in seeing fewer student applications and more employer job ads. In the US campus job postings have "gone through the roof". Michigan State University alone reported +75% growth. It’s driven by employers of all sizes scrambling to get talent.



To broaden their reach many employers have said they will recruit students from any discipline. That’s in addition to increasing the number of universities they target. One employer cited nearly an eight fold increase in the number of universities they recruit from compared to pre-pandemic times. (Unlike Australia with 43 universities, the US has more than 3,000 universities, colleges and community colleges to recruit from).

The downside is that students feel swamped by the number of job postings. That’s led to many feeling overwhelmed and simply shutting down to defer the job search process. That's translated to fewer applications for employers.


Graduate Recruitment Conferences

GradSift will again be exhibiting at the AAGE (Australian Association of Graduate Employers) annual conference to be held in Melbourne in October.

Employer registrations are open to attend the three day event. You can view details and register at

Next month we will be in Portland, Oregon exhibiting at the NACE (National Association of Colleges and Employers) annual conference.

Interestingly, the one marked difference between Australian and US employers is that US employers still rely heavily on manual resume reviews to screen applicants.

Psychometric assessment as a screening tool, hasn't gained the same widespread acceptance as in Australia. That's due to the requirement for employers to demonstrate a compliant selection process that doesn't disadvantage applicant groups.

Speaking of the US, we have 60 US recruiters and talent acquisition managers registered for this week's GradSift webinar "Campus Recruitment - How to Automatically Screen & Rank Applicants".


Shortlisting Made Easy Webinar

We've had positive feedback from employers attending our Shortlisting Made Easy live webinars. The groups are small so it's easy to ask questions and they only run for 30 minutes.

We share how one of our clients went from a complex shortlisting process to a simple and fast process using GradSift, while achieving great hiring outcomes.

Pre-GradSift their challenges included:
• An HR/applicant tracking system that forced students to apply to individual "jobs" (often duplicating applications)
• Multiple process steps
• Complexity of managing candidates for 15 different workstreams/roles
• HR resources limited to a single person
See how they totally streamlined their process.

Invite your colleagues, even if you're just curious to see what others are doing. It's not a sales presentation or a system demo. It's simply, watch and learn.

Friday, May 27, 2022 12:00 PM to 12:30PM Canberra, Melbourne, Sydney
Register in advance for this meeting:

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.


GradSift Makes it to a Published Academic Paper

GradSift is referenced in a new research publication through IGI Global, an international academic publisher.

Donald, W. E. & Pychtin, P. (2022). Optimization of Job Boards and the Graduate Recruitment Process: Advancing HRM Strategies for the Acquisition of Early Careers Talent. In: D. Mentor (Ed.), New Media, Training, and Skill Development for the Modern Workplace. IGI Global.

A small contribution from me with the real work done by Dr William E Donald from the UK.


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