Candidate Persona

The development of successful recruitment strategies stands and falls with an understanding of the target candidates. The concept of “candidate persona” plays a decisive role here. The application not only allows you to design job advertisements that are a perfect fit, but also to create an optimized candidate experience.

Test Dualoo for 30 days free of charge & without obligation:

What is a candidate persona?

Definition of “Candidate Persona”

A “candidate persona” is a fictitious profile that describes the ideal applicant for a particular job. It is based on real data and findings. The aim is to be able to imagine the abstract person “candidate” in a more tangible way and to derive concrete measures for the recruiting strategy from this.

Advantages of the Candidate Persona

Targeted recruiting: Candidate personas enable you to align your recruiting strategy with your ideal candidates. This includes meaningful and targeted job advertisements, but also the selection of the best channels to address them.

Higher quality of applicants: You increase the identification of suitable applicants and thus attract exactly the right candidates.

Optimal candidate experience: By gaining a deeper understanding of your target candidates, you can improve the candidate experience. This includes both the manner of communication and the selection procedures used (interview, meet the team, etc.).

Tips and tricks for entering candidate personas

Use both quantitative and qualitative data to create your personas. Combine internal and external insights by drawing on findings from employee feedback and market research.

The more precise your persona, the more effective it is.

Candidate personas are not static and can change depending on market and company developments. Check them regularly and adapt them to changing conditions.

Make sure that your personas are used in all areas of your recruiting and applicant management.

Develop your candidate personas together with your HR team. This will ensure that your entire team understands how and why you use candidate personas.

Candidate Persona - Tipps & Tricks
Candidate Persona - Herausforderungen

Possible challenges in the use of candidate personas

Despite the many benefits of using candidate personas, there are also some challenges. On the one hand, entering and maintaining these profiles can be time-consuming. Your own candidate personas require thorough research. Regular updates are also necessary to ensure a high level of accuracy and relevance.

On the other hand, there is a risk of overgeneralization. Individual differences and unique talents must not be overlooked in all the focus on candidate personas.

Procedure for creating candidate personas

Start with a comprehensive analysis of the labor market and target group to develop an understanding of your ideal candidates. Use both internal and external sources such as employee feedback, studies or social media.

Based on this data, you can now create concrete and specific candidate personas.

Integrate the personas you have entered into all aspects of your recruiting and applicant management. You can use the persona to enter targeted job advertisements and develop personalized interview questions to select the right candidates. In the onboarding process, the persona enables a tailor-made induction program. Candidate personas can also be used for individual career development and personalized communication. This strengthens the long-term bond with employees.

Make sure you regularly review your personas and adapt them to changing conditions. By observing trends in the company, on the job market and in your industry, your candidate persona is always up to date.

A candidate persona should contain the following aspects (based on a male persona):

  • Demographic information such as age, gender, place of residence, level of education, etc.
  • Professional information such as education, professional experience, industry knowledge, etc.
  • Career goals: Short-term and long-term goals, desired development opportunities
  • Motivations and values: What motivates the applicant? What is important to him in his professional life?
  • Challenges and concerns: What obstacles might prevent the candidate from applying or accepting the job?
  • Communication preferences: Which channels does the applicant prefer for communication (e-mail, telephone, social media)?
  • Sources of information: Where does the candidate look for job vacancies and information about potential employers?
  • Working environment and corporate culture: In which working environment does the applicant feel comfortable? Which values and culture suit him?
  • Salary expectations: What are the applicant’s expectations in terms of salary and benefits?
  • Other interests and hobbies: Are there any personal interests and activities outside of work that could have an impact on the applicant’s lifestyle?

Example candidate persona “Tim”

To illustrate this, you will find Tim Lichtenstern’s exemplary candidate persona below:

Candidate Persona Beispiel - Tim Lichtenstern
  • Name: Tim Lichtenstern
  • Age: 32 years
  • Education: Bachelor in Computer Science
  • Professional experience: 4 years in software development
  • Current position: Junior Software Developer
  • Career goals: Interested in a position as a senior software developer in the next two years. The long-term goal is to become a technical manager.
  • Professional skills: Experience in Java, C#, Python. Good knowledge of agile software development and DevOps practices.
  • Soft skills: Team player, good communication skills, problem solving skills and attention to detail.
  • Motivations: Enjoys working on complex problems and constantly learning new technologies. Values work environments that foster creativity and innovation.
  • Work preferences: Prefers flexible working hours and the ability to work from home. Values a good work-life balance.
  • Communication preferences: Prefers clear and direct communication. Likes to use digital communication tools such as Slack and email.
    Job search: Active on platforms such as Linkedin and XING. Attends specialist conferences regularly.
Candidate Persona - Fazit


Using candidate personas can significantly improve your recruiting and applicant management strategies by providing you with a deeper understanding of your ideal candidates. Despite potential challenges such as time and overgeneralization, the benefits clearly outweigh the risks, including targeted recruiting, personalized candidate journeys and better job advertisements. With a clear focus on application processes and regular reviews, you can exploit the full potential of candidate personas and successfully optimize your HR activities.

Improve the candidate journey with Dualoo – the e-recruiting software for SMEs.

The following companies advertise their jobs with Dualoo: