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Best Days and Times to Send Emails to Candidates

Posted by
Nupura Ughade
May 5, 2023

Picture this: you've just spent hours crafting the perfect recruiting email, polishing every word and phrase to entice potential candidates to join your team. You hit send and eagerly wait for a response. But instead of a flood of enthusiastic replies, all you hear is the sound of crickets chirping. What went wrong?

The timing of your email might have been the culprit. In this blog post, we’ll cover the best days and times to send emails to candidates to maximize responses, including benchmarks from Sense candidate engagement data.

Why is email timing important?

Sending emails at the wrong time can cause them to get lost in the abyss of a candidate's inbox, never to be seen again. On the other hand, sending emails at the right time can increase your open rates, click-through rates, and website visits through email.

The ideal email timing can vary across different industries. For example, if you're recruiting for a retail job, the best time to send an email might be in the early evening or on weekends when people have more free time to check their emails. Job candidates with a non-traditional work schedule, such as healthcare workers or truck drivers, not be reachable via email during regular business hours. For finance or tech jobs, sending emails during normal business hours might be more effective.

Best days to send recruiting emails to candidates

Based on open rates, click rates, and % of candidates engaged from our own data and external research, here are some insights into the best days to send a recruiting email.

Avoid Sundays and Mondays

No surprises here. Emails sent on Sundays had the lowest engagement rate across industries, according to a study by sendinblue. Candidates are often time-pressed on Mondays and your email may get lost in the long list of to-dos as candidates try to catch up with work after the weekend.

Sense’s extensive candidate engagement analytics also find Monday to be one of the worst days to send emails, with a response rate as low as 21%, as compared to an average of ~30% on other days of the week. 

Send emails during the middle of the week

According to HubSpot, Tuesdays and Thursdays are the best days to send emails to get the highest engagement. Sending emails mid-day can be effective candidates take a break from work, check their email, and have time to respond.

That said, don’t completely disregard the idea of sending emails on weekends, especially Saturdays. In fact, Sense data finds Saturdays to be one of the highest engagement days for recruiting emails. Candidates that work night shifts or have long working hours during the weekdays are more likely to explore job opportunities during weekends.

Best times to send recruiting emails to candidates

Here are four potential optimal times to send recruiting emails:

Mid-week, mid-day

Sending recruiting emails on Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday between 10:00 AM and 2:00 PM (local time) can be effective because candidates tend to be relatively less busy during these hours.

Early morning, 6:00 AM and 7:00 AM

Emails sent early morning can be effective as candidates tend to check their emails first thing in the morning.

Late afternoon, 4:00 PM and 5:00 PM

Emails sent between this time can be effective as candidates wrap up their workday and have more time to read and respond to recruiting emails.

Saturday evenings

According to Sense data, sending recruiting emails on weekends, particularly on Saturday evenings is effective as candidates, especially active job seekers, have more free time to review job opportunities.

These times may not be ideal for every candidate or company. Experiment with different sending times and analyze the response rates to determine the most effective strategy for your particular audience and tweak your outreach strategy for each role.

Sense benchmarks for candidate engagement on emails

In addition to streamlined recruiting workflows, Sense’s talent engagement platform offers robust recruiting analytics to help you proactively identify where you’re succeeding and where you need to improve.

We examined the candidate engagement on recruiting emails sent from the Sense platform and here are the top 2 takeaways:

  • Thursdays, Fridays & Saturdays are the best days to send Emails to candidates with an average open rate of ~30%.
  • 9 PM and 6 AM are the best hours to send an email, with an average open rate of 57%.

To help you create winning recruiting emails, we've created ready-to-use and customizable email templates.

Want to learn more about automating email communication across the recruiting funnel? Check out our Recruiting Automation Playbook.

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