How Virgin Media lost £4.4m due to bad candidate experiences.

For anyone wondering what the title of the article is about, I’ll clue you inThis story is ultimately surrounding the poor hiring process of Virgin Media to be precise.

Allow me to paint this picture…

Picture this. You’re a Virgin Media customer.

You’ve applied for a role for one of their customer service based jobs and you’re excited for the interview!

You worry that your lack of experience might hinder you but your passion for the job might outweigh any negatives considering they provide on the job training.

But nonetheless, you’re excited. And you have every reason to be, considering you weren’t even expecting a call back.

You spend days preparing and making sure all boxes are ticked for the big day…

Hopping out the car, you walk into the building only to be greeted with the receptionist of doom. She’s had a bad day and it shows. She greets you reluctantly before you head into the interview itself.

You’re pitching your socks off and selling yourself when all of a sudden your interviewers phone rings. He leaves the room to answer the call without any hesitation leaving you in the lurch. Whatever. It must be important.

Ten minutes later he returns. Your palms are sweaty with anticipation and you’ve thought of a few killer lines to really seal the deal…

But you’ve been shot down. “I’ve heard everything I needed to hear” he says, before promptly telling you that he won’t be offering you the role.

Imagine how you’d feel…

This is exactly how Louise felt, a hairdresser from Manchester, when she popped into Virgin Media for an interview that she was so psyched about.

Immediately after, Louise wrote in to Virgin Media to tell them she’d be changing to Sky Broadband and so would her sister.

Now put this into perspective.

18% of all rejected candidates for roles within the business were current Virgin Media customers and they were all recorded as ‘detractors’, meaning that ultimately these customers would walk away with the feeling that they’d never recommend Virgin to others.

They actually uncovered that 6% of rejected candidates who said they’d switch providers actually did within a month.

The data that Virgin Media ultimately uncovered was that out of 123,000 rejected candidates a year 6% were actively cancelling their subscriptions (which amounts to around 7500 customers.) Calculated on the basis of the average spend per customer lead to….


£4.4 million in revenue per year lost through cancelled subscriptions.

So what does this teach us?

• Poor hiring processes and bad candidate experiences can create more than just brand critics.

• You can lose a bunch of money and ultimately deter jobseekers from ever coming within an arm’s length of your company again.

• That we should always reply to those who apply. They are people at the end of the day and rejection ultimately feels better than no answer at all.

• That we should be kind. Take people’s emotions into account – after all, an interview to you is an hour of your day but to candidates it could be their next career move.

Standard practices like this are not hard to implement and surprisingly are made significantly easier with the advancement of modern-day technology and platforms are readily made to solve all sorts of problems.

This is one of the reasons why we created OCTA, to help the modern recruiter (agency or inhouse) keep candidates informed throughout the whole hiring process and to ultimately protect brand image without much expense on their end.

We don’t like the idea of candidates being neglected and chucked to the side regardless of how well they fit the role they’ve applied for. There are preventative measures that can be taken to reduce the quantities of irrelevant applications too which is a separate discussion but equally as important.

If you’d like to see how you can implement OCTA into your business process to keep jobseekers informed we’re always just a couple clicks away.

Click here to grab some time with me and I’ll walk you through a process in which you can automate jobseeker feedback and save hours doing so ( )

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