The Power of Surveys in the Candidate Experience

Nov 4, 2023

4 min read

Whether or not a candidate ends up working with us, their journey with our company through the hiring process will leave a lasting impression. 

We often hear about the "candidate's experience," but what does it mean? This term refers to the journey, interactions, and feelings from the initial application to the onboarding process.

Why is it important? Assessing and optimizing the candidate experience is essential for attracting and retaining top talent while providing organizations with a comprehensive understanding of the effectiveness and impact of their recruitment strategies.

How can we assess the candidate's experience? One way could be conducting surveys and gathering feedback! 

In this article, we will explore the power of three surveys in evaluating candidates' experiences during the hiring process.

Net Promoter Score Survey (NPS)

The Net Promoter Score (NPS) survey measures customer loyalty and satisfaction.

NPS surveys measure candidate satisfaction by asking, "On a scale of 0 to 10, how likely are you to recommend our hiring process to a friend or colleague?" They gauge the likelihood of candidates referring the organization based on their experience. To capture the overall impression, the surveys can be sent at different stages, such as after the initial application,post-interview, or at the end of the hiring process.

Here is a template of an NPS Survey to share with your candidates:

“Hi [Name], 

Thank you for your interest in [the company’s name] and for investing your time in our hiring process. 

We value your opinion and ask you to take 2 minutes to share feedback on your journey with [the company’s name]. 

Please note that this is completely anonymous feedback.


Considering your candidate experience, how likely do you recommend [the company’s name] to others? (Linkert Scale: 0 - Not likely to 10 - Very likely)

(If the answer is between 1 and 8) What should we do differently to get a higher score? 

(If the answer is 9 or 10)  What makes us a 9/10?

The Post-Interview Survey

If you want more detailed feedback, perhaps consider a “Post-Interview Survey.” It gathers input on the interview process, including questions about the interviewers' professionalism, the clarity of instructions, and the overall experience. Key questions to include in the survey are:

Application Process

  1. Was navigating our career page, LinkedIn jobs, or other job boards easy while submitting your application? (Likert Scale)

  2. Did you find the application instructions and requirements clear and understandable? (Likert Scale)

  3. Did you encounter any technical issues or challenges while submitting your application? (Likert Scale) If yes, please specify…

Recruiting Team

  1. How would you rate the professionalism and conduct of the interviewers? (Likert Scale)

  2. Did the interview questions accurately assess your skills and qualifications? (Likert Scale)

  3. Did the recruiting team manage your expectations by delivering updates on the next steps with a clear timeline? (Likert Scale)

  4. Do you have any suggestions for improving the interview experience? (Open-ended question)

Overall Experience

  1. How would you rate your overall experience with our organization's recruitment process? (Likert Scale)

  2. Were you satisfied with the communication and timeliness of updates throughout the process? (Likert Scale)

  3. Did the process clearly understand our organization's values, culture, and expectations? (Likert Scale)

  4. Please share any additional feedback or suggestions to help us improve our recruitment process. (Open-ended question)

The Candidate Withdrawal Survey

This type of survey helps us understand the reasons that led the candidate to withdraw from the hiring process. By collecting feedback from candidates who have chosen not to continue, organizations can gain valuable insights into any pain points, and areas for improvement within their recruitment process. Some sample questions to include in the survey are:

  1. What was the primary reason for your decision to withdraw from the hiring process? (Provide a list of single-choice answers)

  2. How would you rate your overall experience with our organization's recruitment process? (Likert Scale)

  3. What else could we have done to encourage you to continue the process? (Open-ended question)

Best Practices for Implementing Surveys

Timing is Key: Send surveys at strategic points in the hiring process to capture fresh feedback, such as after key interviews or at the end of the candidate's journey.

Keep Surveys Concise: Candidates are more likely to complete surveys if they are brief and focused. Include questions that directly address the candidate's experience and provide actionable insights.

Ensure Anonymity and Confidentiality: Assure candidates that their responses will remain anonymous to foster an environment of trust and encourage honest feedback.

Express Gratitude: Express genuine gratitude for the candidate's participation and valuable feedback. Let them know that their input is highly valued and will contribute to improving the candidate’s experience.


Many applicant tracking systems have built-in survey functionality or integrations with survey tools. Check if your ATS offers survey capabilities, as using the same recruitment and survey administration platform can be convenient.

However, various tools can help you create candidate experience surveys, such as SurveyMonkey, and Typeform.

You can also consider Google Forms, as it is a free and simple tool that allows you to create surveys and collect responses.


Candidate experience surveys are vital in evaluating and enhancing the hiring process. These surveys provide organizations with valuable insights into candidate satisfaction, areas for improvement, and opportunities to cultivate a candidate-centric approach. We can make data-driven decisions, enhance employer branding, and attract top talent in today's competitive job market by conducting surveys.

Are there any other candidate experience surveys that you have found effective? I'd love to hear your suggestions! Feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn.

Your Friendly TA Ivana


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© 2023 Ivana Evola

Made with 💙 by Daniele

Let's connect!

© 2023 Ivana Evola

Made with 💙 by Daniele