HR Giants Team Up to Offer Free Resources to Rejected Job Seekers

Zach Brooke
Marketing News
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Key Takeaways

​What? A new program released by Mercer and Career Arc provides job training to rejected job seekers.

So what? The program is designed to help organizations susceptible to bad online reviews on Glassdoor and other sites.

Now what? Both candidates and employers should make rejection as positive an experience as possible to position themselves well in the future. ​

April 6, 2016

A new social platform cushions the blow of job rejection with free training

Job hunting is seldom fun. Getting rejected for a coveted position is bad enough, but most professionals understand the special kind of frustration that comes with being ghosted by hiring managers. Now, in the age of employment review social sites, job rejections are no longer just bad news for candidates, they are hazardous for companies as well. Disgruntled applicants vent on sites like Glassdoor, reflecting poorly on everyone.

Combating this trend are HR consulting firm Mercer and software company CareerArc, which have teamed up to launch Candidate Care, a job skills and search platform that employers can offer for free to candidates who they don’t hire. Courtny Cloeter, partner and U.S. growth leader at Mercer, explains why Candidate Care is a win-win for applicants and employers.

Q: What services are included in Mercer CareerArc Candidate Care, and how long are rejected applicants given access?

A: The Mercer Career Arc Candidate Care system is a robust online platform designed to give the candidate an edge in their career search. The service lasts for six months for the end user from the date they activate. Users of the service enjoy unlimited access to many critical features including notification of open job alerts and access to a job search engine with millions of opportunities, integration with social networking sites that support the job search (including LinkedIn), résumé and cover letter guides and workshops, video interviewing practice, innovative skill assessment tests, networking assistance and industry research databases. 

Q: What does the networking assistance feature look like?

A: The networking assistance module enables candidates to optimize their social media presence and leverage research tools to uncover their next job opportunity through access to industry associations, LinkedIn and Facebook social media profile guides.

Q: How does Mercer Match work? 

A: Mercer Match is a game-based, neuroscience platform that is a standalone product we have integrated into the Candidate Care platform to provide additional resources for the declined candidate to leverage when understanding marketable skills and new career opportunities.

Q: Do rejected candidates have access to job postings not listed on public job aggregators?

A: Yes, in addition to integrating job postings from web aggregators, the Mercer CareerArc Candidate Care Platform also boasts proprietary job listings from enterprise customers and access to network and research databases with links to associations to further discover career opportunities outside of the platform. 

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Q: How many businesses are currently using Candidate Care?

A: There are currently 37 companies utilizing the platform. Through continuous engagement and education with HR leaders on the importance of employer brand … we expect continued interest as HR leaders continue to act as employer brand stewards for their respective companies.

Q: How many rejected candidates are making use of Candidate Care? Can you share a percentage of eligible candidates who use the service?

A: There are tens of thousands of candidates who have accessed the system. Activation rates vary from organization to organization depending on the marketing and communication efforts with the declined candidate population.

Q: Can all types of businesses use it, or would it only work well for employers in certain fields? Would a health care worker, a paralegal, a marketer and a teacher all benefit equally from Candidate Care?

A: All businesses can benefit from protecting their employer brand and providing their declined candidates with a career transition system to support their job search. The platform is built with adult learning principles in mind and is flexible for all industries of work and all job types, from hourly, part-time and entry-level workers to director and executive-level job seekers.

Q: What feedback are you hearing from clients and candidates? 

A: The feedback we have received from job seekers and clients has been overwhelmingly positive. The platform star rating is currently 4.3 out of 5 based on job seeker feedback. A global consulting firm has already had more than 500 declined candidates rate the application 4.7 out of 5.

Q: How likely is it that a candidate is declined for reasons that can be addressed by making use of the career resources?

A: The resources in the platform are designed to significantly improve the steady state of existing applicants and have been vetted and utilized by workforce development associations and state governments in their retraining initiatives for unemployed workers.

Q: Do you follow up with rejected candidates to see if they are employed by the end of the complimentary period?

A: Yes, we conduct surveys and connect with end users to gain insight into their platform usage and success in landing a new job.

Q: What about following up with rejected candidates to see if they’ve posted about the employer that rejected them?

A: Yes, we have features on our product roadmap to help organizations hear directly from candidates via social media and encourage those that had a good experience to let those employers know.

Q: Mercer and CareerArc report rejected candidates are three times more likely to post negative reviews of a company online. Where is that figure coming from?

A: According to our 2016 Candidate Experience Study, nearly 60% of candidates have had a poor candidate experience, and 72% of those shared that experience online or with someone directly. This provides a tremendous opportunity for employers to be proactive rather than reactive in addressing their potential candidate pool. Frustrated candidates are taking to sites like Glassdoor and commenting about employers on social media, describing the interview and application process, the way they were treated or if they received a response to their application at all. Many never get notified.

Q: Other research shows 40% of companies already neglect to inform declined applicants of their status. How will adding this extra step decrease this number or distinguish companies that use Candidate Care?

A: The introduction of Candidate Care will enable organizations to solve two challenges with one solution. At once, they can update their application response processes and communication while also offering a tool for declined candidates. This will truly separate these organizations from their competitors, as they will be seen as organizations that care about their talent community and go the extra mile.

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Author Bio:
Zach Brooke
Zach Brooke is a staff writer for the AMA’s magazines and e-newsletters. He can be reached at or on Twitter at @Zach_Brooke.
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