In order to hire the most qualified person for your open position, you must keep candidates engaged throughout the interviewing and hiring process. If you don’t keep them engaged, then they will drop out of the process.

The reason that they’ll do so is simple. We’re in a candidates ‘job market right now, and in such a market, candidates have options. They don’t have to stay in your hiring process if they don’t want to. They have other options at their disposal including the option to stay with their current employer.

There are two main ways to keep candidates engaged during the hiring process. That’s because these are two things that they want. You must show them respect and you must show them consideration.

Candidates would like for their interviews to be scheduled at a time convenient for them, since they’re probably conducting a confidential job search. They would like feedback following telephone and face-to-face interviews. And they would like to know where they stand in the process and what the next steps will be.

The bottom line is that candidates want potential employers to be respectful of their time and also considerate of their job search, especially if it’s a confidential one. Failure to do this might mean that you’ll lose their attention, they won’t be engaged, and they’ll drop out of the process.

What candidates want in the hiring process is not that complicated. However, it does require time, energy, and effort to provide these things in a consistent manner.

But when you pay more attention to what top candidates want, then as an employer, there’s a better chance that you’ll get what YOU want.