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Connecting Future Talent to your Current Stars

Candidate experience and engagement continue to be hot topics of conversation. And in an increasinglytech-dominated workplace, making sure your people (both future and current) remain front of mind, will not only enhance the company reputation but also your ability to engage with, attract and retain top talent. 


Take ‘Early Careers’ for example, it’s widely accepted by resourcing functions and recruiting professionals that millennials are more purpose-driven than other generations. This is reflected in their motivations, aspirations and experiences which often come to the fore within their recruitment journey. 


So, in the instance of this emerging talent, it’s important to understand what their drivers are when choosing an employer, what their decision-making process looks like, how you will communicate with them, the candidate experience in their eyes and what guidance they may/may not be receiving on campus. 


At our past Resourcing Leaders 100 members meeting on Early Careers, Nicola Sullivan (Business Development Director at Meet & Engage), shared with us some great insights on what this looks like for women aspiring for a career in engineering, technology and consulting.


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Nicola highlighted the expectations of this group, who expect ‘on-click wonder’, simplicity, and a good user experience. With high expectations, if the process becomes cumbersome or confusing, you run the risk of disengaging them or even worse, losing them from the process. 


Key insights on candidates at this stage of their career development being:


- Receiving genuine contact with their future employer is one of the most important factors when deciding which offer to accept, even trumping salary.

- For 84% of woman, how they’re treated during the recruitment process has a direct effect on brand advocacy, regardless of being offered the job or not. 

- The impact of candidate experience; the positive feeling experienced during the recruitment process often determines an accepted or rejected offer. 

- The rise of reciprocity; for everything the candidate gives, what are you providing in return?

- 80% of candidates say they’d take a job over another due to the connections formed during the recruitment process.


Nicola also stressed the importance of enabling your future talent to engage with your current stars. Why? Well we’re in the age of peer review, we do very little without hearing what others have to say, ala TripAdvisor, Airbnb, Glass Door. 


Furthermore, candidates are bombarded with company spiel across a plethora of channels, but a company comes to life and becomes real when they meet its real assets - its people.


It’s also human nature to yearn for a sense of belonging, we like to feel part of something, feel inspired. Early Careers candidates prefer to hear from their peers over the top brass as they can better relate to their experiences. It allows for role models to be created, who are accessible and can depict an achievable career path.


For Nicola, we need positive role models, commenting: “when I meet a powerful woman, I feel motivated and energised to become like her one day.” 


But sounding a note of caution, Nicola says to beware of personalisation giving way to automation. Citing how many women find video interviewing as being the most challenging part of the recruitment process due to lack of human interaction; adding: “It’s important that candidates feel that they’re having genuine dialogue rather than just talking to a machine.” 


And whilst technology can enhance the recruitment experience, make sure it’s not at the expense of a human touch. 


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Nicola Sullivan - Business Development Director