Danyel Cx1 Danyel Cx1

Candidate Experience

Getting in ‘da-zone’

The experience economy

In 1998 Jospeh Pine and James Gilmore wrote an article for the Harvard Business Review entitled “Welcome to the Experience Economy”. They argued that during this digital revolution, individuals look for an experience and not just a product:

“A company intentionally uses services as the stage, and goods as props, to engage individuals in a way that creates a memorable event.”

There is no reason why talent acquisition should be any different. In fact, I would argue that talent professionals are acutely aware of this. We want to create a memorable experience and use this to drive our employer brand.

What is candidate experience and why is it important?

The best feedback I receive when we inevitably have to turn down candidates is “I have thoroughly enjoyed meeting and getting to know everyone at DAZN. I have learned through the experience and while the outcome has not been positive, I am looking forward to trying again.” Now, I may have paraphrased but the message remains the same.

Candidate experience is important because it is the first (and sometimes only) stage that candidates get to interact with the organisation itself. It is one of the cornerstones of the employee lifecycle and it is imperative that we tie this back to our employer brand.

Candidate experience is the journey from the moment the candidate begins to consider a role at an organisation all the way through to when they leave for their next adventure. They will have their on-boarding experience, employee experience and then the off-boarding experience upon leaving.

Todays job market is tough. It is a candidate-driven market and companies are fighting tooth and nail to attract some of the best talent out there. Culture and experience are important factors for candidates. The initial stage of their journey will set the tone for all future interactions.

Here at DAZN, we have a team of recruiters who all have an empathic mindset and a people-first mentality. I aim to reject candidates when I feel we have gathered enough evidence to support the decision. However, this may not always be the case or even possible depending on the role. What I can promise is we do our best.

The talent acquisition team are business partners. I push for detailed feedback from our managers and teams. I try and hold our hiring managers accountable. I learn about roles and provide as much guidance and information as I can throughout the entire process, being entirely transparent with our candidates.

I provide personalised and detailed feedback to people so individuals can use this as a learning opportunity. If I am able to, I try to give back feedback immediately and on a call.

When we say ‘goodbye’ to candidates we want them to feel good about themselves. We want them to take something away from the experience they had with us and we want them to want to come back in the future. Some of the best and most motivated candidates that I have seen have been the ones who tried again and used the feedback for their personal and professional improvement. We want to prepare candidates for success, not only with us at DAZN but in their career. If the person does not fit with the role, our aim is not to reject candidates but to guide them on how you can become better professionally.

I try to be fully transparent about the process from the beginning. We explain what we will assess in each stage in depth – who will interview them, what skills we are looking for and how to best prepare. We send out a package of our hiring/interviewing guides and links that the candidate should visit. We want to ensure candidates are confident moving forward and have the tools to succeed. We also want to ensure that we are bringing in the best talent in terms of culture and skills.

The journey

The candidate experience starts from the moment the individual begins to consider the role with us. That can be through us reaching out directly, them applying for a vacancy or by other means. It is imperative for us that all channels foster and enhance the experience.

Before any candidate joins DAZN or any other company they will meet a select few individuals who will be the ambassadors of DAZN.

Interviews are a two-way evaluation. Interviewers have a platform to shape the candidate’s impression of a company. We train all our interviewers and we are there to support and challenge them accordingly. We want candidates to leave with a good impression and feeling energised about the prospect of joining us. Even if the outcome was negative, we want candidates to feel good about the interview they have done with us.

So what does this all mean?

To ensure we are providing the most effective and most memorable experience we aim to get back to candidates as quickly as possible. We take the time to understand candidates and their needs. We hold our teams accountable and give back personalised feedback in a timely manner.

Candidate experience can transition into the onboarding experience, the employee experience and the offboarding experience – the entire employer brand lifecycle.

Candidate experience is our north star and we are continually working to improve the journey of candidates who seek to join DAZN. We facilitate experience. We want to set up people for success.