Measuring recruiting success: KPI #2

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3 mins, 5 secs read time

Lauren Ryan is the Director of Talent Acquisition at Greenhouse. She leads recruiting strategy, tracks the company’s recruiting KPIs, and oversees process improvements. She’s thrilled that she’s found a company that’s as passionate about the intersection of people and data as she is!

This is the third post in a series about the 5 key performance indicators (KPIs) we use at Greenhouse to measure our recruiting team’s success. Learn the methodology behind our KPIs in the introductory post and find the description of the first KPI here.

At first glance, it might seem like it’s really tricky to put a number on something like “candidate experience.” Is it really possible to quantify something as subjective as experience? Just like our friends in Customer Success have adopted the net promoter score to understand how happy our customers are, measuring candidate experience is part of a growing focus on relationship-based recruiting and is a critical data point in understanding the impact of your process.

It also turns out that a measured candidate experience is a critical KPI that we use at Greenhouse to measure our recruiting team’s success.

So, how do we measure candidate experience at Greenhouse, and why, exactly, is it a recruiting KPI? Read on to find out!

KPI #2: Candidate survey results

The second KPI we use is candidate survey results, meaning the feedback we get from candidates indicating they had a positive interview experience.

We all spend time designing a thoughtful interview process. We measure candidates on a multitude of culture-fit attributes, give them code tests or case studies, and get input on their technical experience from the people who will work with them.

However, remember that candidates are assessing your company and their fit in the role as much as you are. If you don’t ensure an excellent candidate experience, you handicap your chances of the candidate accepting your offer. Candidates use their experience during the recruitment process as a proxy for how much value a company places on its people and what their experience will be as an employee.

As recruiting organizations, we need to ensure we’re keeping a keen eye on delivering a smooth, thoughtful, and respectful candidate experience. Hiring a dedicated Candidate Experience Manager can help your company focus its efforts in this direction. But, there’s another reason a solid candidate experience is so impactful. At Greenhouse we see everyone who goes through our process as a potential brand ambassador. Whether the candidate receives an offer or not, we want to create a positive impression of the Greenhouse employer and product brand so that when the time comes, they would consider encouraging their friends to apply, apply again themselves, or even put in a positive word for Greenhouse when it’s time for their future employer to buy a recruiting platform.

Measure candidate survey results by considering the proportion of candidates who answer “Yes” or “Strong Yes” to the question “Overall, my candidate experience was a positive one” in a post-interview survey. A net promoter score from candidates, indicating their likelihood of recommending your company to someone else, would also be a great way to capture this information.


Wondering how your candidate survey results might measure up? Across Greenhouse customers, 73% of candidates indicate they had a positive candidate experience by answering “Strongly Agree” or “Agree” to the question “Overall, my interviewing experience was a positive one.”

Are you using the Greenhouse platform already? Check out this FAQ for more information about the candidate survey.

Move on to our 3rd recruiting KPI