This feature is currently available to all Premium partners. Please speak with your account team to enable!
The Applicant List Upload tool allows you to upload an anonymized list of your applicants from an external system in order to determine which of these candidates interacted with you through Handshake. Handshake will identify matching student accounts and then report to you on the past interactions you took with these candidates.
- Matching student accounts will only be displayed if the student has an active and public student account. Matching accounts that are not activated or are set to private will not be included.
Please note: Premium features are for Handshake Premium accounts only. For more information, please check out this resource!
- Access List Uploads to import applicant lists
- How to upload applicant lists
- How Handshake anonymizes candidate data
- What happens to your hashed data after it is uploaded?
Access List Uploads to import applicant lists
Import Applicant Lists will be coming soon on the Reports view under Applicant Analysis. If you are interested in participating in our beta program for earlier access while we optimize our matching algorithm, please get in touch with your customer success manager!
How to upload applicant lists
The file containing the list of applicants you would like to anonymously compare with Handshake’s over 7 million active student accounts needs to be in a CSV format.
You can import external applicants by following these steps:
1. Prepare a spreadsheet with applicant names, emails, the role applied to, and the status of their application. The file needs to be formatted in columns with the exact header titles listed below:
- Handshake recommends creating tightly-scoped spreadsheet files with applicants and hires for individual or small collections of roles from a single hiring period.
2. Click “Import applicant list” on the Applicant Analysis report.
3. Your file will be validated before being anonymized and uploaded to ensure that matching can be performed without errors. Handshake will irreversibly anonymize applicant personally identifiable information (PII) using SHA-256 hashing in the browser. Click here for more information.
4. Upload the anonymized spreadsheet to Handshake.
5. Handshake will look for candidates accounts with matching hashed values.
- This matching process is similar to how passwords are validated when sent securely between two platforms: neither system knows the plain text of when matching, but they can identify exact character patterns.
- These matches will be made in a two step process:
- First, Handshake will search using the hashed candidate email against its own database of hashed user emails
- Next, all remaining records not found by email are searched using the hashed names.
6. Handshake will retrieve details on your historical interactions in the last 12 months with these matched candidates.
- Handshake does not report on candidates that you have not interacted with in this 12 month window
- Handshake plans to continuously improve its matching algorithm and interaction data set in order to ensure every sourced candidate is matched and reported upon
- Because of limitations inherent in the matching process, the results may be incomplete
7. Handshake will generate output spreadsheet with the information on your interactions on Handshake with matched candidates, one reflecting all exact email matches found and the other with all possible name matches.
- Only matches who interacted with you on Handshake will be provided.
- Your customer success manager will receive these files and prepare them into an easily understood format.
8. On a regular basis, Handshake deletes all uploaded files to ensure no employer-provided hashed data is stored in perpetuity.
How Handshake anonymizes candidate data
Once you have prepared a file with a list of applicants and have validated its format, Handshake will anonymize all fields in the file that could be used to identify the exact candidate. Specifically, Handshake will run a SHA-256 hashing algorithm on the First Name, Last Name, and Email fields in the file. This process will transform the plaintext names and emails into 64-character hexadecimal values that are functionally impossible to decrypt. As an example, “John Doe” would read as “6cea57c2fb6cbc2a40411135005760f241fffc3e5e67ab99882726431037f908” after hashing. You will have the opportunity to view a preview of these hashed values for verification before any data is transferred to Handshake.
File validation and hashing take place in your browser on your computer. Handshake does not receive any data from your local system until after hashing and you explicitly click the button to upload.
What happens to your hashed data after it is uploaded?
Handshake will begin the process to look to identify matching student accounts with the hashed fields. Handshake will identify the matching values produced by the hashing algorithm against its own set of hashed data, in the same way that web passwords are securely validated. Handshake compiles an output report summarizing your historical interactions with the matched Handshake accounts in the past 12 months. This output report is emailed to your Handshake success team.
Once the above process is complete, the original hashed file is deleted from Handshake’s system. Handshake does not hold on to the original file any longer than necessary to identify matching Handshake accounts. Unmatched records are never shared or stored.