Employers' slow feedback may alienate job candidates: Poll

This article is more than 12 months old

Singapore job seekers list out frustrations when applying for jobs in survey

Employers in Singapore are potentially alienating job candidates with their slow feedback and poor communication during the hiring process, new research from recruitment consultancy Robert Half shows.

Nearly half of the 500 job seekers polled here cited slow feedback on where they stand in the recruitment process as the top frustration when applying for jobs, followed by poor communication about the steps that form part of the process.

Delayed decision making by the prospective employer ranked similarly high on the list.

According to Robert Half's research data, 42 per cent of professionals apply for 10 or more roles simultaneously.

Some eight in 10 job seekers said they also regularly receive multiple job offers when looking for work, with 36 per cent "often" or "always" getting more than one offer, Robert Half said.

Just more than half of the respondents also said they generally do not receive feedback from potential employers about their interview performance, and 61 per cent were not given a reason why they were not offered the job.

As a result of such delays, 47 per cent of job seekers said they would not recommend a company as a potential employer, with nearly half going so far as to withdraw their application if they have not received a timely response about its status.

Other survey answers on frustrations faced by applicants included the lack of transparency on rewards and benefits, disappointment with terms and changing requirements.


Robert Half Singapore's managing director Matthieu Imbert-Bouchard said businesses should avoid alienating applicants with long drawn-out interview processes if they want to secure the best candidates.

"Singaporean companies would benefit from balancing their recruitment process against the expectations and frustrations of job seekers, while simultaneously streamlining their application and interview process.

"This will help them ensure that delays and other frustrations are not costing them top candidates," Mr Imbert-Bouchard said.

Applicants who feel they have not been treated properly may also give negative feedback on the organisation, "significantly damaging" its reputation.

According to full-year data by the Ministry of Manpower, the annual average unemployment rate last year for Singaporeans was 3.3 per cent, higher than the average of 3.1 per cent in 2016.

Overall, the rate was 2.2 per cent, higher than the 2.1 per cent seen in 2016.

Retrenchments in Singapore dipped last year compared to the year before, coming in at 14,340 against 19,170 in 2016.