Recruitment is always evolving. From printed CVs and newspaper ads to online boards and applicant tracking systems, the best companies have always embraced new technology to maintain an edge in the hunt for top talent.
As new tools and products continue to hit the market to provide new solutions and benefits, recruiters are faced with the challenge of deciding which ones most fit their needs before building their processes around it. So how do we weigh our options and decide?
First and foremost it’s important to analyse whether the tech you plan to introduce genuinely helps the team and helps applicants. Simply put, you have to ask yourself: is this tech levelling us up and offering something new that your existing products don’t have?
Does a new product simply look and feel sleeker, or does it have added benefits and features that help recruiters, hiring managers and applicants? Putting metrics in place at a granular level to judge performance and experience against new tools will help your decision-making.
Time and Cost per Hire
The fact that there’s a wide variety of tools out there and they help different people in contrasting ways can make it difficult to decide which tech to adopt. This is where hard metrics come into play – time and cost per hire for example, or candidate quality and their experience. Once you access and review important information like this, you should be a step closer to making a decision.
The next step is to ensure your recruiters are happy with the tech. They will be the people using it every day, so it has to work for them to make sure they continue to work for you. It’s not unheard of for recruiters to leave a company because the tech stack employed there doesn’t work for them or they don’t enjoy using it.
Of course, when it comes to technology in recruitment, hiring and management, it’s not just the HR department that uses it – Hiring Managers within the organisation will also be key to successfully onboarding products and often, they can prove tricky.
While the benefits of an applicant tracking system or any tool designed for talent operations will always be clear for those to use them day in, day out, for Hiring Managers it will be a different experience with less touch points but when they do use it they’ll be making big decisions. Making things as painless as possible so Hiring Managers engage with it as much as you need them to is vital.
Dipping in and out of a tool once or twice a quarter to review profiles and leave notes isn’t conducive to gaining expertise, As a result, easily available training and a quick onboarding process can make or break things.
Get Faster Hiring Times
In addition, it helps to choose products that are user friendly, intuitive and easy to navigate for even the rarest users. Engaged Hiring Managers result in quicker hire times and that makes everybody happy, regardless of other metrics.
Once the benefits to the business are clear, the recruitment department is on board and Hiring Managers are happy, the next stop on your journey to a successful implementation is to lock down a solid user experience for applicants.
It’s crucial that the process is seamless and easy for them, otherwise they won’t engage and the whole exercise is pointless, no matter how good the system looks on paper or how much your HR department loves it.
For happy applicants it’s key to reduce the amount of steps a candidate has to take between clicking on the job and successfully applying. Repetitive asks, unnecessary fields and other assorted hoops to jump through will take too much time and discourage candidates from applying.
The Name of the Game
Once tested, surveyed and rolled out with all considerations taken into account, it’s important not to rest on your laurels. Installing a bright, clear and easy to see ‘Feedback’ option to ensure that if and when things go wrong, habits change or expectations aren’t met, they can be quickly and easily shared with you or the people responsible for maintaining your technology.
Being proactive and welcoming feedback from candidates especially will enable you to constantly tweak and optimise your products, learn more about potential candidates and whether or not they would be inclined to apply again, and that’s the name of the game.
Recruitment is an imperfect science, no matter how much tech we apply to it. An applicant tracking system can do a lot for retaining and nurturing talent, tools like Calendly and Zoom are ideal for speeding up the screening process and getting to the next stage. But ultimately, while tools and technology continue to make things more and more efficient, recruiting is a people first business and that will never change.
AI: The Final(?) Frontier in Recruitment
One of the hottest topics in Talent recently has been the rise of ChatGPT and the impact it and AI as a whole might have on the industry. Here, we examine some pros and cons of AI in hiring.
AI has shown some significant benefits in other fields, including medicine and science, and also has a knack for removing a lot of manual work. For example, AI could be used to populate job descriptions almost instantly, before a quick check by a recruiter or hiring manager signs it off. This kind of work and similar tasks could save recruiters hundreds of hours per year.
It might be easy to focus on the positive and exciting, but there are also pitfalls out there. As we’ve seen with other open source and open contributor tools, such as Wikipedia, you can’t guarantee accuracy and honesty, as, theoretically, anyone anywhere, can use the tools. This potentially dangerous side effect has already been touched on with AI Deep Fakes in multimedia so we must be vigilant as it grows and spreads. AI could also grow to be relied upon too much, breeding laziness and a lack of creativity.
While the benefits available right now are centred around repetitive manual tasks, such as boilerplate content or easily structured job descriptions, where it’s headed is the bigger question. Will AI have the ability to predict career paths accurately, and perhaps spot talent where we might not previously expect to find it. For example, a person working in finance, with a focus on numbers, could be tested and found to be ideal for a more creative career, or vice versa.
We also have to be careful because automation can be easily spotted and when contacting a potentially excellent candidate you want to ensure they read and respond to your message. If they come to believe the message is ‘robotic’ then they might not take it as seriously as they would a ‘genuine’ message and ignore it.
The conversation around automation, AI and direct communication when it comes to outreach is ongoing and won’t end anytime soon. But regardless of your preference, it’s best practice to use technology for optimization. Whether it’s as simple as A/B testing, or deeper analytics, constantly revising, rewriting and updating your outreach could be the difference between success and failure.
In addition to using standard email or Inmail to reach candidates, talent professionals, including Starcircle’s Eliza Molina, have adopted some creative methods for finding talent, checking out Discord, Github, Slack and Twitter for leads and talent. There’s always something – or somewhere – new to explore to access hidden talent.
More About Starcircle’s Inner Circle
The article above covers the key points raised at Starcircle’s Inner Circle event in March.
Inner Circle is Starcircle’s exclusive global network of clients and alumni who come together monthly to share experience, expertise and unique perspectives on trending topics within the talent market,
The events are invite-only, with a small number of invitees and speakers participating in roundtable discussions and debates. Each session focuses on a specific theme aimed at breaking down barriers and removing friction in the hiring process.
Inner Circle sessions are off the record events which aren’t recorded, shared or made available to anyone other than the live attendees.