How Technology is shaping the Recruitment Industry
12th February 2019
With unemployment figures at their lowest level for over 40 years, today’s job market is candidate-driven with recruiters and companies alike facing an ongoing battle to attract the top talent.
Technologies such as social media, artificial intelligence, and the cloud are changing the traditional recruitment processes and businesses within this sector must keep up to be competitive and succeed.
The need to keep moving forwards
The UK recruitment industry has historically welcomed technology wherever possible, being an early adopter of software and services to improve processes and systems. However, this may be slowing.
In a recent report on the recruitment sector, although 29 per cent of recruiters considered technology and core process efficiency to be one of their top three challenges over the coming year, only 16 per cent placed the introduction of more automation in their top three priorities in the short term.
Enhancing not replacing people processes
Technology and innovation are moving recruitment away from a desk and paper-based activity and towards a dynamic, intuitive and streamlined business process. This move is not a threat to people and employment as the personal element to recruitment is still important. The new technology will speed up and fine tune processes to give efficiencies for both the recruitment businesses and their clients.
The new technological advancements are also good news for SMEs, starts ups and Fintech companies, as it is opening up the market and allowing them to compete with the larger organisations and multinationals for the same talent.
Here are just some of technology areas that are helping to transform the recruitment industry:
Big data analysis
The term Big Data refers to the vast amounts of unstructured data that result from people’s online interactions - with the Internet, social media and mobile apps. By collating and interpreting big data, recruiters will have the means to gain a better understanding of their candidates’ requirements, improve the profiling, quality and retention of prospective applicants, and accurately match up the right people to the right clients.
Using data analytics can also give recruiters insight into an untapped passive candidate audience through social media and programmatic advertising, which have both been proven to be increasingly effective.
To satisfy regulatory requirements such as Data Protection and GDPR, the technology infrastructure needed to secure a company’s Big Data retention and storage programme must be considered from the very beginning.
Robust access control and encryption must be inbuilt as the individuals and clients’ private information could be at risk if it were to experience a data leak or cyber-attack.
Partnering with a professional Cloud provider can guarantee your business a secure systems design and total compliance.
AI & Chatbots
The ability to effectively identify relevant talent is fundamental to the success of any recruitment company. Most recruiters already use Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) to perform time-consuming tasks such as screening CVs for key words or phrases, or previous company histories, that would mark a candidate as suitable for specific job vacancies.
But technology is moving on and now recruiters are beginning to use artificial intelligence (AI) to attract and profile prospective candidates.
Introducing this innovative automated learning technology, allows recruiters to match the right candidate to the most suitable roles far more efficiently and accurately than ever before. By embracing AI, recruitment consultants will see huge improvements in terms of quality of search allowing them to pipeline more quality candidates for their clients.
The use of chatbots to screen candidates is already on the increase - and it is predicted that over the course of this year, the AI that propels chatbot functionality will become even smarter and more relevant with its capabilities.
However, building an artificial intelligence infrastructure requires a serious review of your business’s data storage, networking, security and AI needs, combined with careful strategic planning. It is always worth consulting with a professional IT supplier to understand the necessary requirements and possible upgrades – most reputable companies will not charge for an initial consultation just to test the waters.
Compared to several years ago, the interview process is already becoming far more high-tech - many people now interview candidates over Skype. Not only does this save time and money for all involved, but it also removes the restriction of geographical location – both for candidates and recruitment agencies – and it gives recruiters access to a national, if not global, talent pool.
Some videoconferencing software can record the interview which makes it much easier to evaluate and review the candidates.
According to some in the industry, video interviews are also set to become automated – meaning a candidate will speak to the camera whilst the machine takes them through a list of questions.
This is predicted to help eliminate unconscious bias and save recruiters’ time. Facial and speech recognition software may can also be used to analyse the candidate’s body language, their tone of voice and their stress levels during the interview.
In every industry sector, cloud technology has transformed the way businesses use and store data. One of the biggest advantages of using the cloud is the centralisation of data and ease of access - which really benefits the traditional recruitment processes of sourcing, interviewing and hiring new talent as it is admin-heavy with constant liaison between many parties.
Giving recruitment consultants access to their data, files and emails from anywhere, at any time, on any device allows them to react more quickly to client requirements and ultimately increase the chances of securing more business.
Cloud-based software solutions can make it easy for recruiters to view candidate applications, share with their clients and provide feedback. This not only makes internal operations more efficient but speeds up the turnaround for each role and the applicants themselves.
Getting the technology right
Technology is revolutionising the recruitment industry and it is becoming more apparent that those that embrace change stand to benefit the most.
Investing in the right infrastructure to support your business and stay competitive within the market is key. We can make sure you have the right IT in place to deliver the best digital solutions for your business.