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Organizational Dynamics

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Employee selection -- Management, Employees -- Recruiting, Employment interviewing, Organizational behavior


Organizations that focus on ensuring a high-quality candidate experience are more likely to attract, engage, and connect with top talent. They are also able to bring more visibility to their brand. This is because when individuals feel connected to an organization, their attitudes and behaviors are more positive. As such, it is critical to ensure that the selection process candidates experience is a positive one. Indeed, a 2017 review of the applicant reactions literature was conducted by McCarthy and colleagues, and findings indicated that when candidates have a negative reaction to the selection process they are likely to report lower levels of organizational attractiveness, reduced intentions to recommend the company to others, and decreased propensity to accept a job offer. This can have very significant implications, as demonstrated by the following statistics:

  • In [2014], Virgin Mobile estimates that they lose approximately $5.4 million every year as a result of job candidates who are unhappy with their experience applying to the company actually cancelling their cell phone subscriptions.
  • Career Arc reported that 72% of candidates who have had a bad experience have shared it online through an employer review site, a social networking site, or directly with a colleague or friend.
  • The Talent Board found 46% of candidates who have a “negative” overall experience say they will take their alliance, product purchases, and customer relationship somewhere else.
  • CareerBuilder estimates that 42% of candidates who were dissatisfied with their experience would never seek employment at that company again.
  • LinkedIn reported that the cost of having a bad company reputation is as much as $7.6 million for a company with 10,000 employees.

In spite of these figures, it is common for candidates to have negative experiences as a result of the types of assessment tools they are required to complete, as well as the way that they are treated during the hiring process. In fact, a survey of more than 4500 job seekersover the age of 18 was conducted by CareerBuilder in 2017 and results indicated that 73% of respondents found the job search process to be one of the most stressful life events and over 60% had quit in the middle of filling out online applications because of their length or complexity! Thus, while the use of job-related assessments is critical to organizations and offers a number of benefits, especially the increased ability to select top talent, candidates who complete assessments do not always see their benefits and can react negatively. Such negative reactions can take the form of perceived unfairness, decreased motivation, and anxiety.


Crown Copyright © 2018 Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

This is the authors' version of an article that subsequently appeared in Organizational Dynamics, Volume 47, Issue 3, July–September 2018, Pages 147-154. May be found at



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