Using ApplicantStack’s™ Questions module, you can create many different questionnaires to use in collecting data from candidates as well as from internal users about candidates. You can also create scoring rules to help filter your candidates between unqualified to a top prospect.
This guide will show you how to create and edit questionnaires as well as scoring rules.
ApplicantStack™ comes with prebuilt questionnaires for your use. You can access these by clicking the Library Tab, then clicking the Questionnaires button on the left side menu.
The Questionnaires Grid has 3 columns:
- Name: The name of the questionnaire.
- Last Modified: The date that the questionnaire was last modified.
- Actions: These are icons representing actions that can be performed on a given questionnaire including open, clone, edit, and delete.
The Questionnaires screen also includes a filter labeled Show. This filter allows you to display whether the questionnaire is active or inactive in the system. The right side menu also includes three buttons, which are New Questionnaire, Archive, and Delete.
Even though ApplicantStack™ includes prebuilt questionnaires for your use, you may need to create a questionnaire to capture the type of data that you need from a candidate. Click the New Questionnaire button on the right side menu.
When creating the Questionnaire, first enter the basic information:
- Name: This is the name of the questionnaire as you want it to appear in the online application.
- Instructions: This is an optional field that you can use to provide any instructions for the questionnaire to the applicant.
- For: Select Candidates if this questionnaire will be filled out by Candidates, or Users if this questionnaire will be filled out by Users (i.e. feedback)
- Private: Only select this check box if the candidate’s answers should only be available for reporting. The answers will not display on the candidate’s record. This setting is used for data that you want to capture, but do not want it to be viewed by users of the system.
Now, you are ready to begin creating the Questionnaire, select the Add Question button.
Next we need to add a question to our questionnaire. Our options are below:
- Question Type: Selecting the question type is important when considering how the answers may be used for reporting, sorting and scoring. The possible types of questions are listed below:
- Label: User presented with information.
- Yes/No: The user is presented with a yes/no picklist.
- Multiple Choice: The user is prompted to select one answer.
- Select Many: The user can select more than one answer.
- Single-Line Text: The user is able to type text into a single-line text box.
- Multi-line Text: The user is able to type text into a multi-line text box.
- Date: The user will be able to select a date from a calendar.
- File: The user will be able to upload a file.
- Question Text: This is the exact wording of the question as it will appear on the online application. For multiple choice and select many there is also a section to enter your possible answers, which should each be entered on a separate line.
Once you have chosen a Question Type, three additional standard check boxes need to be considered. They are:
- Required: Check to make this question required.
- Side-by-side: Check this to show the question on the left and the answer on the right.
- Horizontal: Check this box to show the answers list horizontally as opposed to the default vertical list. This setting applies to multiple choice and select many questions.
Other options based on the type of Question Type you have chosen can be:
- Possible Answers: List the possible answers for Multiple Choice or Select Many type questions
- Autofill: If you want to autofill the question for the candidate, select a source to autofill from.
Once you have completed your question, click Apply to add it to the list.
On the Create Questionnaire page, you are able to change the order of the questions. Click on the question and drag it to the desired position.
You may want to clone a question, which would create an exact duplicate of the question. With this question, you could change some wording and have an all new question without having to reset it’s attributes. Cloning a question can be accomplished by clicking the green cross in the Actions column by the question you want to clone.
By clicking a question’s edit icon in the Actions column, you can edit the question while you are still creating the questionnaire.
If you need to delete a question, click the question’s delete icon in the Actions column by the question you want to clone.
You can enter another question by clicking the Add Question button. There is no limit to the number of questions that can be added to a questionnaire.
The Show Advanced Settings link provides the ability to create a Layout Template, for a Questionnaire, to customize the way the questions are displayed. Using this feature, you can duplicate the display of your company’s employment application or apply any special graphics used by your company. Creating a Layout Template is an advanced task, which requires knowledge of HTML. If you do not have this expertise, we can complete this, as a custom project (see your ApplicantStack support representative for details).
You can see details about your saved questionnaire from the View Questionnaire screen. This can be reached by creating and saving changes to a questionnaire or by clicking the name of the questionnaire from the Questionnaire screen.
From this screen you can do the following:
- Add Scoring Rules: This allows you to add scoring rules to a questionnaire to help filter your candidates.
- Add Actions: This allows you to add actions for your questionnaire.
- New Questionnaire: You can create a new questionnaire.
- Edit: You can edit the questionnaire that you are viewing.
- Delete: Allows you to delete the current questionnaire that you are viewing.
- Preview: Clicking this button will display the questionnaire in the format that it will appear when it is attached to your job.
Please note: You will not be able to edit a questionnaire that has a layout template. If you try to edit a questionnaire with a layout template you will notice this message:
There are two ways to edit a questionnaire. If you are on the Questionnaire screen, you can click on the questionnaire’s name in the Questionnaire Grid. This will take you to the View Questionnaire screen where you can click the Edit button on the right side menu. The other way to edit a questionnaire is to click the questionnaire’s edit icon on the Questionnaire screen, which will take you directly to the Edit Screen.
Both the basic fields and list of questions are available for edit. To edit a specific question, select the Edit icon for that question and the details will display for revision. Click Apply for the changes to be saved.
You may also add questions to the questionnaire by clicking the Add Question button.
When making changes to Questionnaires, be aware of the impact the changes have on the system:
- If a Questionnaire is associated with more than one job, the changes made will apply to all jobs where the Questionnaire is used.
- If a Questionnaire has already been answered by candidates, you are able to add or reorder questions, but deleting questions or answers will result in lost data.
- If a Questionnaire has a defined Layout Template (e.g. the default Employment Application), and you add, delete or reorder questions, you will also need to update the Layout Template.
Once you have finished all of your edits, click the Save button on the right side menu to save your questionnaire.
The Scoring module is a valuable tool. It uses candidate answers as well as words and phrases in their resume to identify key factors that you determine. The ability to score candidates based on this data allows you to quickly spot candidates that are unqualified for your jobs as well as candidates that are considered top prospects.
You can set up scoring rules for all the candidates for a specific job on the Scoring Tab for the job. You can also run existing rules by selecting Run Rules from the right side menu.
Click Create Rule:
To Create a Rule you first determine the Rule Source. The Rule Source can either be:
- A questionnaire (the answer to a question within a chosen questionnaire)
- Resume (a word or phrase that exists in a candidate’s resume)
When a rule source is set to Questionnaire you will need to select a questionnaire from the drop-down list labeled Questionnaire.
Once you have selected your questionnaire, that questionnaire’s questions will display and you can assign points to the answers. You can assign points to as many questions on the questionnaire as you like.
You may decide that the answers to certain questions might determine if a candidate is unqualified for your job. You can indicate that this answer is a knockout by selecting the corresponding checkbox labeled Knockout. Even though an answer may be considered a knockout, the candidates are not removed from the database because of a knockout answer, but the indicator can be used for searching and sorting.
When a rule is created with a source of Resume, you will need to enter a phrase that will trigger the rule and either award a certain number of points to the candidate or indicate they are unqualified if that word or phrase is found in their Resume text. Enter the word or phrase in the field labeled Phrase. Enter the point value in the field labeled Points or you can check the checkbox and make the word/phrase a Knockout.
Once all your rules have been assigned you can manage them through the Scoring Tab on the Jobs Tab.
You can edit a scoring rule by clicking it’s corresponding Edit icon as well delete or remove a scoring rule by clicking it’s corresponding Delete icon. You can also run your newly created rules against candidates that have applied for the job previously by clicking Run Rules from the right side menu.
You can set up scoring rules for questionnaires in your library. When you create scoring rules for a Questionnaire they will apply to all Candidates who answer the Questionnaire. Note that the scoring for a candidate may use BOTH Job scoring rules AND Questionnaire scoring rules. Job scoring rules will take precedence in case of overlap.
To add scoring rules to a questionnaire in the library, click on the questionnaire’s name, then beside Scoring Rules click Add Rules.
Once you click Add Rules, the Create Scoring Rules screen displays and you can assign points to as many questions on the questionnaire as you like.
Once you have added all your scoring rules, click the Save button.
If you need to change any of the scores or delete the rules in their entirety you can do so by clicking the corresponding buttons.
These buttons are:
- Edit Rules: Takes you to the Edit Scoring Rules where you can change or remove any of the scores that you have assigned.
- Delete Rules: Deletes all scoring rules assigned to the questionnaire.
Questionnaire Actions provide your ApplicantStack™ questionnaires with added functionality allowing you to send emails to individuals, automatically send a candidate to a new stage, or a combination of both upon submission of the questionnaire. For example, you can add this action to your Application for Employment and it will send an email template that you choose to any of the applicant's references upon submission. You can use this feature to email referral questionnaires or requests for letters of recommendations to an applicant's references further automating the hiring process.
To use this feature navigate to the Library Tab. Click on the Questions button on the left side menu. Select the questionnaire you wish to work with by clicking its name.
Click the Add Actions link and you will be presented with the following:
On the Edit Questionnaire Actions screen you have the following options:
- Email Actions
- Stage Actions
- Candidate Email Actions
You can create Questionnaire Email Actions to have the system send an email to a Recipient entered in a questionnaire (e.g. References) using an Email Template in your Library. For each email that you want to trigger from this questionnaire, select the Name question and Email question from the questionnaire and select the Email Template to send to the recipient
- Send Emails: You can set the emails to send immediately upon application submission or you can set them to send on a stage change. For example, you can have the emails send after a candidate passes the Manager Review stage. You will need to configure this in the Application Workflow Settings. These settings can be reached by clicking Setup, then Configure, then Configure Application Workflow Stages. Select the stage you want to have the email send by clicking its edit icon. Next check the questionnaire you need in the section labeled Questionnaire Email Actions. For more information on configuring workflow see Configure Application Workflow Stages.
- Recipient Name: You can choose the field that will contain the email recipient's name. Select the field from the drop-down.
- Recipient Email: You can use the dropdown menu to select the field that will contain the recipient's email address.
- Email Template: You can use this drop-down menu to select the email template that you constructed that will be sent to the recipient. If you need help constructing an email template please see Email Templates. Note that you can specify different email templates to go to different recipient types.
- Add Row/Remove Row: Clicking these links allow you to add additional rows so that you may add more recipients or remove rows if you need to remove recipients.
You can choose to immediately email the recipient(s) as soon as the questionnaire is submitted. Or choose On Stage Change to wait to send the emails until the candidate reaches a certain stage of the workflow (defined in the Workflow Configuration).
You may want to move candidates from stage to stage when they answer questionnaires that you send them. Using the stage actions, you can send the candidate to a specified stage when the questionnaire is submitted. To do so, select the stage from the drop-down.
You may need to have a particular email that you need to send as soon as a candidate submits the questionnaire. You can set the trigger in this section by selecting the email you wish to send from the drop-down. The dropdown lists all available emails in the library.
Clicking Save will commit your changes.
If you need to change the actions, click the questionnaire name and click the link Edit Actions. This will open the Edit Actions form and you may change the parameters that you have set or add additional ones.