Here at Weirdly, we’re big on learning sideways. Pulling knowledge from other departments, disciplines, roles and applying it to make us better at what we do.

When it comes to creating world-class candidate experiences, there’s a lot we can learn from our sisters-from-other-misters over in the customer experience team. The phrase, “candidates are customers” is bandied about a lot in recruitment circles (we’ve even used it ourselves) so it’s likely we’re not sharing new news here. But here’s the challenge:

When’s the last time you talked to one of your customer experience people with a view to applying their tactics to YOUR department?

If your answer is along the lines of “ah…[shuffles foot]...I’m just very extremely busy”, we get it. That’s why we’ve taken this great blog of insights from the Customer Experience masters over at Qualtrics and translated them into simple snippets of advice you can apply to your candidate experience planning.

CX for CX: Pearls of Wisdom from the masters

Data is only useful if you use it:

Collecting piles of data is one thing, gathering data you can actually use is quite another. There’s always a temptation, to go for volume - we’re in the “measure everything” era, after all. Maybe if we measure every possible thing that has a number attached to it, we’ll reach a utopic future in which bias doesn’t exist, a single ad sees us flooded with spectacular applicants and engagement is at 100%.

Look, I’m not going to be a hater. Maybe one day we’ll have the tools (and budgets) to make that future a reality. In the meantime, sifting through that pile is overwhelming at best, not even being attempted at worst.


Actionable, timely information is the most valuable. Start like a scientist - with a hypothesis. So you’ve done a quick candidate experience audit and you reckon your weak points are pre-apply and post phone screen. What specific data do you need to inform and then measure changes to those experiences? % completion to next stage? Application point drop-offs? % followup touch points completed post phone screen?

Whatever you choose, being selective and then making sure you’re consciously linking the data you gather to an explicit goal will make your life WAY less stressful.

And if you’re bringing in tools to help smooth the way, make sure the data that comes through those tools is specific, regular and focussed.

When it comes to feedback, timing matters:

In customer experience, encouraging people to share feedback spontaneously is gaining popularity. This involves building more opportunities and methods for customers to communicate with you.

Over here in the HRM world we could take a page out of that book. Ok, maybe it’s not useful to open the door to a constant stream of candidate commentary but most of us could afford to crack a window open.

How real-time is the feedback you’re getting about your candidate experience? Is it a 3month-later survey with your new hires? Or are people given the opportunity to share an NXS/cNPS style score after key interactions in your process?

Real-time, in the moment feedback gives you a super authentic perspective to complement the retrospective insights you're already gathering.

Go wide when investigating industry benchmarks/best practices:

If you’re building a world class experience, you don’t need to limit your inspiration to your own playing field.

Need to boost your career site performance? Traditionally you’d use monitoring to work out a “good” benchmark and try to beat that. Need candidate experience performance metrics? You could find the average for similar companies on this NXS/cNPS benchmark research and work from there.

There’s nothing wrong with those approaches exactly, but if that’s all you do, you can get pretty trapped. When you stay in your industry lane, you’re not often exposed to new, fresh methods. It becomes very easy to keep recycling the same tactics or get distracted by what your nearest competitors are doing.

If you’re really dedicated to building beyond-the-ordinary candidate experiences, you need to look for beyond-the-ordinary inspiration.

You might be an enterprise IT company with an ok cNPS rating compared to your industry, but look at the Retail benchmark. What makes those companies consistently rate so highly? Are there things they’re doing that you could emulate to boost your own performance?

Looking outside your own market niche or dataset gives you a more diverse ideas. It can help expand your understanding of what’s possible and in the process, refine your own standards and benchmarks for great experience.

Qualtrics talks about how the best customer experience brands in the world aren’t satisfied to lead just their categories in CX, they want to be the best across adjacent categories too.

Well I’d argue, the same could be said of the companies dedicated to building top-shelf candidate experiences.

We’re so proud to be working with a bunch of them - companies like Bumble, Uber, Target, Atlassian and Bunnings. If you’re interested in hearing more about the candidate experiences they're delivering with Weirdly, book a demo with our team today.