Jobs in the Travel Industry: Candidates want to know interview outcomes quicker

I love my job – there are plenty of highs, and days are busy and rewarding. However, if there was one thing that I could change and which would highly benefit both my customers and clients it would be the speed in which my candidates receive feedback following an interview. The impact of not giving feedback and waiting days before contacting interviewees can damage your brand. Conversely, clear, quick, kind communication when hiring for jobs in the travel industry can lead to benefits for your company – not least, attracting the best candidates, particularly in the current market where there are more jobs than candidates.

It may be the (unwelcome) rise of ghosting culture that’s to blame (read my blog about ghosting here), or perhaps we have all become more blasé in the current social-media dominated climate. It’s hard to know the cause, but for jobs in the travel industry, the phenomenon of keeping an interviewee hanging on is definitely on the rise.

I’m increasingly having to chase on behalf of good candidates what the outcome is following an interview. An example of a recent email from a candidate – once I’d chased (which took a lot of unnecessary calls and messages) and found out that the job had gone to someone else – is this: ‘Thanks so much Fi, it’s just such a shame it took so long – to be honest it put me off working for this company, particularly as they implied they’d let me know quickly.’

Don’t risk a bad reputation

So, what happens next is this candidate (who went on to gain a good position in another company) tells colleagues in their new job that he wasn’t impressed with how this other company handled the hiring process. The travel industry isn’t that huge – it doesn’t take much for a company reputation to start to get tarnished.

Here at Progressive Travel Recruitment, we work on many tailor-made travel consultant roles. Excellent customer service skills are required for these jobs in the travel industry, including being responsive and understanding, and catering to customers’ multiple needs. We will only put forward candidates who totally understand that how they treat customers directly affects the company reputation. So, why would that same company treat them any different?

My job as a travel recruiter is to sell the candidate the idea of the potential role and the company. But the company needs to be actively impressive to the candidate, too – particularly in this candidate-driven market. Having to chase for information is never impressive. In our instance it’s brand breaking as the candidate wonders why they didn’t hear back or get feedback.

If a candidate has spent time preparing, turns up on time, takes time off work to attend an interview and then is left hanging about the decision, this has a very negative effect on them. And far from being snowflakes, I have absolute sympathy with them. They deserve better.

Tips for employers when hiring for jobs in the travel industry

1 Set and state an amount of time within which you’ll contact a candidate after interview and stick to it. I recommend 48 hours.

2 Put yourself in the interviewee’s shoes. They will have put in a lot of effort for an interview and deserve respect and don’t want to be left hanging. Try and remember what it’s like being a candidate and waiting to hear how your interview went.

3 Imagine the candidate is a customer and treat them accordingly.

4 Always consider the company brand; its reputation is in the balance when you treat potential staff badly.

5 You want to be an employer of choice in order to attract the best candidates. So treat everyone you meet with the same positive attitude.

6 If you’re not sure who to hire and need to keep a candidate warm after interview when you have other interviews lined up, you should communicate this honestly. People prefer honesty to silence.

7 Advise candidates and recruiters of your hiring process, so that they are aware of timescales and next steps.

8 If you know you’re not going to hire, let someone know as soon as possible.


Need the best candidates for jobs in the travel industry? Connect with Fiona on LinkedIn here.