What matters to job seekers right now?

It’s pretty simple: post a job and jobseekers will apply —right?

We all know that finding great candidates isn’t so straight forward. The days of ‘post and pray’ are gone, and the importance of building world-class candidate experiences is on the rise. But what actually makes for a great candidate experience?

PageUp recently surveyed 180,000 job seekers in a quest to answer this question and compiled the comprehensive results into their Candidate Experience Report.  

Ahead of her appearance at ATC2023 where she’ll be walking us through some of these key insights about candidate experience, we sat down with PageUp’s Head of Customer Insights & Market Research Rebecca Skilbeck to get the cheat sheet on what really matters to job seekers right now. 


Your session at ATC2023 is titled Decoding candidate experience. What matters to jobseekers in 2023. So tell us, what does matter to job seekers right now?

Information and efficiency. We know today’s jobseekers are discerning; they’re savvy and well-informed. They want to make informed decisions.

Our research found that 80% of jobseekers say it is very or extremely important to “be empowered to make an informed decision about a job by having the crucial information at the beginning of the process”. Providing candidates with the right information via the right channels provides the foundation for a positive recruitment experience. This includes both the careers site (what is it like to work at this organisation?) and the job ad (is this the right role for me?).

Jobseekers also value efficiency. Creating a seamless experience for candidates as they transition between finding information to actively searching and applying for open positions is key to securing top talent. While a rigorous application process used to be harnessed to ‘weed out’ candidates with lower commitment, an overly complex process is a sure-fire way to lose applicants when hiring in a candidates’ market.

What’s something that talent teams place a lot of emphasis on that candidates aren’t too bothered with?

Overly Polished and highly branded content. The careers site needs to be engaging. It needs to provide relevant information about the organisation and the recruitment process. It’s the place to showcase diversity and inclusion, and future career opportunities. Talent acquisition teams and jobseekers are in alignment on the type of information required – but who should be supplying the content? A lot of corporate career sites contain beautifully crafted content and stock images, but jobseekers today are discerning —they don’t trust polished corporate communications. They trust their peers and are interested in authentic employee-generated content. Raw and unpolished – as long as it’s authentic – is more effective at engaging jobseekers, building trust and convincing them to hit ‘apply’, than highly polished marketing material.

What’s one thing that Talent Teams can do today to improve their candidate experience?

There’s a well-known saying – to understand someone’s experience, thought process and challenges, you need to “walk a mile in their shoes.” For Talent teams to truly understand how they can improve the experience of jobseekers we encourage them to search and apply for a role at their company. What was it like? How could it be improved? This provides real time, specific, actionable data.

Critically assess the information on your career site. Does it showcase what it’s really like to work at your organisation? Search for a job. Did the layout of the career site and search functionality make it easy to find the right role? Review your job ad. Does it contain all the information you need to understand and apply for the role? Apply for a job. Was the application quick and easy to fill in, and were all the questions relevant to the role?

Once you’ve done all that, repeat the process on a mobile device to make sure it is mobile optimised. Little changes can make a big difference.


Want to know more? Join us at ATC2023 at Sydney’s Luna Park on 22nd & 23rd November to hear Rebecca’s full session Decoding candidate experience. What matters to jobseekers in 2023

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