Monday Metric: Why Interview Stage Conversion Rates Matter

stageconversionrateThe recruiter’s ultimate goal is to get the right people through the door, but all too often, companies focus on the amount of seats that are filled rather than how many candidates make it through each stage of the hiring process. There are a lot more factors that go into recruiting than just how many individuals are hired; that is just the end result. Understanding how and why candidates drop out at each stage, and how many are advanced or rejected by the recruiter, will give you a much better idea about the health of the talent acquisition strategy.

By measuring this type of activity, known as conversion rates, you can take an in-depth look at your current recruiting strategy and identify what you’re doing well – and where the process can be improved. For example, you may find that despite extending offers to star candidates, a higher than usual number don’t accept. This likely means that the time between the interview and job offer is taking too long, and candidates are getting new offers or pursuing other opportunities while waiting to hear back.

At the same time, if conversion rates at each stage are too high, that might signal a different kind of problem – namely, that you’re advancing too many candidates further into the process. The right recruiting approach is one in which conversation rates decrease as candidates move along in the pipeline, continually thinning the candidate pool for each position to ensure you focus only on the most qualified. If too many candidates are advanced into the later stages, then interviewers are likely being too lenient and advancing those who aren’t fully qualified. If that’s the case, you can provide coaching to ensure interviewers ask the right questions, gain the needed insight and put only the best candidates forward.

Conversion rates also let you look far beyond the typical measure of how many offers are accepted. This information is meaningless without supporting data into how you got there – and about the candidates who weren’t selected. The right strategy is to look at all elements of the recruiting lifecycle and see how they impact the interview process and candidate experience at each stage.

As hiring continues to become more competitive, a streamlined process for moving candidates along is key to reducing drop off and ensuring the best individuals move forward. At the same time, as many companies face growing skills gaps, the ability to narrow that candidate pool to those most qualified is essential to making the right decisions and avoiding costly mis-hires. But to get the insight needed to shape and continually fine-tune the recruitment process, measuring conversion rates should be a priority.

For more information and insights from the Greenhouse team, check out our section of the blog that explores recruiting metrics and why they can help you get better at hiring. You can also download our eBook, 5 Talent Metrics for Effective Recruiting, below:

5 Talent Metrics for Effective Recruiting


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