Technology, the new recruit: how tech can improve your recruitment capability

Technology, the new recruit: how tech can improve your recruitment capability

Believe it or not, technology is a vital component in the recruitment process. Through the application of advanced digital tools, tech can match candidates and businesses together to ensure mutual compatibility. Whilst recruiting is arguably about people, technology helps us to understand each other better, and enable businesses to glean greater insight into their position in the market place. Through a combination of big data, the presence of social media, AI and cloud technologies, technology can help business source and recruit talent in more intelligent ways.

New windows into work life

Social media is a fundamental aspect and corner stone of the digital landscape. As we continue to import our lives online and spend a greater portion of our free time on digital platforms, increasing numbers of job seekers are using social platforms to research and get to know their prospective employers. Platforms such as Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn are influential in reaching out to potential candidates. Whilst corporate websites remain a must, social media platforms offer potential candidates a window into company culture and ethos: a different vantage point from which to consider your business. Increasing numbers of professionals allot credence to working for companies with whom they share a world outlook [hyperlink to article].

The idea of “companies for good” resonates with a growing community of people. In order to spread the word about cross company messages and activities, social media has been incredibly influential. Platforms such as Instagram are fantastic portals in which to establish a pastoral image of your company culture; one which values people, wellbeing and champions good causes. Whether this is through showcasing work communities, sports clubs, charitable activity or innovative work spaces, cultivating a well-rounded picture of your company is an excellent mode of communicating with talent, and of cultivating a more engaged and excited pool of potential applicants.

Speaking directly…

Although social media platforms are useful storefronts for businesses, they provide a direct mode of communicating with talent; trends are beginning to emerge that many professionals do the bulk portion of their job searching on mobile apps, so it is essential that employers look to position themselves within the social networks, many of us use daily. While a multi-platform approach is doubtless essential, the kinds of messages which are communicated to potential candidates is pivotal; posting concise and attention-grabbing job headlines is a great way to capture new talent. More so however, is the importance of sharing messages that communicate mission and vision. Using these portals to communicate cohesive messaging can refine the types of candidate who are interested in your business and enable further discourse down the line when it comes to interviewing. While some members of the profession will dismiss social media as “fluff”, any savvy recruiter will recognise the importance of facilitating greater rigour- social media is a fantastic method of galvanising your talent pool by enhancing those conversations.

Technology to combat unconscious bias

While social media can facilitate the growth of talent interested in your business, recent technology has the capacity to create a more level playing field for prospective applicants and remove any unconscious bias that can potentially undermine a recruitment process. As Forbes attests: “While companies have increasing amounts and diversity of data they can leverage to try to identify the best fit for each position, the recruiting process is still stuck in the past, based on standardized resumes and (potentially biased) interviewers’ opinions, and companies are suffering because of that. Even though we are talking about people, machines seem to be able to help not only source but also screen applicants. In fact, studies have shown that humans are notoriously bad at picking the right applicant and a meta-analysis illustrated that algorithms can outperform human experts in hiring.”

As our gender pay gap reports have highlighted, unconscious biases still run riot in our work places. As a result, it is more urgent than ever to eliminate bias to ensure that businesses tap into a wide talent base, rather than saturate one pool of talent. Technology can be used for performing advanced tasks such as: facial recognition, social interpretation and candidate screening. It also removes the prejudices inherent in humans, which can inform your final round panel of candidates.

Finding the right kind of candidate for the role is the greatest challenge facing recruitment professionals. While easy and free access into professional work histories is readily available, thanks to platforms such as LinkedIn it is essential that recruiters don’t simply “data mine” their way into finding the right candidate. It’s essential that Companies should make use of technology to analyse the information at their fingertips to drill down to find the right candidates. This is where big data technologies come into their own; refining the recruiters ability to discover, visualise and draw insight, big data systems pull together large amounts of information that can then be refined and reduced into groups of candidates that tick all the right boxes.

While big data technologies are certainly part of the future for recruiters, it’s still essential that good recruiters interpret the information, and utilise other human factors when making decisions; did a candidate attend a networking session? Engage on social media? Show up to an interview? While a great deal of things can be gleaned from a digital network, it’s still important that a recruiter keeps their eyes and ears firmly grounded in human interaction.

Cloud technologies have transformed the way businesses store and share data. One of the biggest advantages to shared document platforms is the centralisation of data and ease of. This provides recruiters with access to client information anywhere, anytime on any device. This means that recruiters are poised to react more quickly to client requirements, increase the chances of securing revenue, and expediting the recruitment process in the process. Cloud-based software solutions can streamline process, making it easy for managers to view candidate applications and provide feedback in real time.

As in so many aspects of business, technology can enhance the capacity of recruitment professionals by; streamlining and centralising data, providing vital insight and enabling greater communication with potential candidates. Whilst it is certain that the human component of recruitment will remain, installing a combination of these valuable systems will promote your outreach, and ensure that you are able to engage with the right professionals for your clients.

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About the author:
Catherine is one of the Future of Law's digital editors. She graduated from Durham University with a degree in English Literature and worked at a barristers chambers before joining Lexis Nexis.