Candidate experience failings afflict businesses despite labour shortage

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Poor candidate experience remains a blight on the recruitment practices of many businesses in the UK despite a lack of workers, new research suggests.’s findings indicated that a quarter of workers received no response to job applications made since the start of the pandemic and almost one in five (19%) reported a wait of more than two weeks for feedback.

Of those who did receive a response, a significant proportion (17%) of workers were made to wait more than two weeks between interviews.

The employment agency said that inadequate recruitment practices raised concerns for employers hit by labour shortages.

Reed said that at the end of September there were more than 300,000 jobs live on its website – a 158% year-on-year increase.

Simon Wingate, managing director of, said the labour market had drastically changed since the start of the pandemic, with the shift in power transferring from employers to workers because of the sheer volume of job opportunities available. He added: “It’s therefore a concern that candidates are reporting negative experiences during the hiring process, especially for those businesses for which candidates are also potential customers.

“Our research shows how recruitment practices can have a significant impact on both hiring and business performance, with people unlikely to recommend the company to others after a negative experience. To combat this, businesses must focus on improving how they hire and not just who they hire, with time of the essence.

Reed found that 13% of workers had reported receiving contact from companies they h

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