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Should a Candidate's Interview Feedback be Shared by Law? #FightForFeedback

Having worked in recruitment for the past ten years even I was shocked by some of these feedback statistics however small the scope of those surveyed. It raises some really important questions that need answers.

Debut, the award-winning student and graduate careers app has launched a national petition on Monday, as part of its #FightForFeedback campaign, which will also include a white paper being submitted to government, to request new rules whereby employers are required to share feedback with candidates after a face-to-face interview.
With the words required being used, I anticipate they’re asking for it to be included in recruitment legislation and enforceable or penalised.

Debut asked 1000 18-23 year olds how they felt about feedback post-interview, and 77% agreed it should be a legal requirement.

Debut is a student and graduate careers app that connects young talent with leading employers – it aims to become the global app for student careers. I can see why they are looking to make a name for themselves by pushing for the change especially after being listed as one of the UK’s most exciting, fast-growing companies, as part of City AM’s Annual Leap 100 list. They’ve also won the Google Developers Launchpad in April 2015.
They want to make a name for themselves and become credible in the marketplace but are they fighting for a cause for their own gain or an actual problem?
I think they’ve got a massive point and there is a problem. Looking at some of the interesting statistics coming out of the various surveys it does make you think:

  1. Four out of five candidates claim to have never received feedback after a face to face interview (83%)
  2. Over half (51%) of candidates have taken a day of annual leave for an interview (worth £117.46*)
  3. The average cost of attending an interview is £41 – equivalent of 8% of the typical family household weekly spend
  4. 77% of 1000 people aged 18-23 in UK think it should be a legal requirement for employers to share feedback after a face to face interview.

Fight for feedback – sign the petition – #FightForFeedback from Debut on Vimeo.
The campaign is already being backed by global employers, including 02, Fujitsu, Network Rail, the FDM Group and Capgemini – more best practice employers are expected to follow suit. The Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR) is also supporting the campaign.

Melissa Amouzandeh Network Rail’s Emerging Talent Acquisition Manager shares her words of support for Debut’s Fight for Feedback campaign:
“Feedback is vital for a candidate’s progression – without it, they may struggle to secure that next opportunity.
“It’s the responsibility of the employer to share feedback, not only to help the candidate develop, but also in the interest of the UK workforce – good quality feedback reduces the time it takes for candidates to secure a position of employment, and also reduces the time it takes to find the right person for the role. This campaign is win:win for all involved.”
What’s the potential outcomes for the candidates:
Depending on the scope of the legal requirements it could have amazing outcomes for candidates being given constructive and informative feedback providing them a route to achievable goals for improvement.
But what about the feedback that you don’t like giving?
Their personality doesn’t fit the team, their interview was weak or it could even be something like they have very bad personal hygiene!
Could the feedback destroy their self confidence and ultimately put them back in their career search especially if they’ve been out of work for some time?
What’s the potential outcomes for employers/recruiters:
My initial thought is why isn’t the feedback given in the first place. They’ve gone to great lengths to attend an interview and as stated above the cost of attending is normally overlooked.
From my experience time and resources would be the biggest issues.
So this will mean an increased use in automation and systems for a cost effective process to deliver feedback, or, an increased internal cost for additional recruiters to manage the additional communications and workload.
From effective measures, this can have amazing results within an organisation and how they look to potential employees. A company that cares about new staff is going to care about those within the business. Right?
We asked Charlotte from www.RecruitmentRevolution.com how they felt about this ruling from a candidate point of view:
We’ve observed a strong return to a candidate driven market in the last few years. Despite Brexit and other economic woes, we’re seeing that it’s candidates who are firmly in the driving seat when it comes to UK jobs. The tech sector in particular is booming for candidates with huge competition for talent among employers.
To this end, attracting and keeping candidates engaged is becoming more important to companies recruiting for a new position – and when advising them how to do this, we always recommend focusing on the candidate experience.
A primary component of this is ensuring candidates are always responded to even if not successful and that the process for them from start to finish is timely and considered (this can also prevent successful candidates not taking a job because they’ve been offered something elsewhere).
So it’s for this reason we think mandatory candidate feedback is a great idea. Not only can it help candidates in future interviews, it forces employers to consider the candidate experience which, in a candidate driven market can only serve to better their recruitment aims and even boost the hiring company’s reputation too.
*Sponsored Input*
If you’d like to find out more or sign the petition click here: http://debut.careers/feedback-petition/

I think that you shouldn’t need it to be legislation as it should be part of your recruitment process if you really value your candidates experience. If this is such a big issue as Debut make out then the REC and APSCO should be conducting national surveys and taking ownership of the problem.

I’d be really interested in your feedback from a candidate/recruiter/employer point of view so please feel free.]]>


  1. Dan Jackson Reply

    As an employer I agree here that feedback should be shared. It almost seems pointless attending an interview if you don’t hear anything at all. I appreciate the employers might not benefit by sharing feedback and it would have cost them to conduct the interview as well as the candidate but it’s just common courtesy.

    1. corporatedad Reply

      Good points and I agree but clearly some employers don’t feel the same. It’s sounds like changing the game from common courtesy to enforceable will force employers to act. I’m not sure.

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