By: Tony de Graaf, Hiring Success Director EMEA at SmartRecruiters
Acquiring top talent is an age-old challenge for businesses that’s been exacerbated by the pandemic and the global skills shortage. In fact, a recent report by Deloitte found that nearly half (46%) of all talent acquisition (TA) teams struggle not only with attracting strong candidates in the current market, but also have difficulties narrowing down the right candidates from large applicant pools.
On average, the job market is seeing increased applications across a variety of sectors post-pandemic with research revealing some job ads are seeing upwards of 3,000 applicants per opening. For talent acquisition teams this can be extremely overwhelming with most of their time spent sifting through applications, slowing down the time to hire and diminishing productivity.
In the same Deloitte research, over half of respondents (56%) said they expect to hire an increased number of candidates this year, but their talent acquisition teams will remain the same. Talent acquisition teams already face intense workloads. The increases in applicants, and more roles to hire for, without adequate tools to streamline the process could significantly hinder hiring success and slow business growth.
Driving talent acquisition with data science
The greatest asset a company has is its people. If talent acquisition isn’t optimised, organisations will miss out on top candidates to competitors. Therefore, success will be dependent on the efficiency of the TA teams – and innovative, enterprise-grade technology can help. HR software and tech tools can intelligently automate workflows and capture rich data from potential candidates which businesses can use during the hiring process.
Research from LinkedIn found that 67% of recruiters and hiring managers agree integrating data capturing software into the recruitment process saves them time, while 47% report it reduces human bias in the hiring process and 31% believe it delivers better candidate matches.
Furthermore, talent acquisition teams that integrate digital solutions into the process can simplify scheduling interviews, screening resumes, and finding passive candidates who may be a great fit, to apply for the role. Business leaders must also invest in recruitment technology that provides the TA teams with an overview of data in real-time.
This visibility will enable them to pinpoint any improvement areas that need working on so they can execute the best possible recruitment strategy. Real-time data provides recruitment teams with vital insight into who candidates are, their skills, and their location, often speeding up the conversion rate. In addition, investing in the digital transformation of recruitment will provide HR teams with the tools they need to enhance their skill sets and increase overall business efficiency.
While data-driven tools are helpful in optimising the talent acquisition process, these tools don’t replace the human interaction. Instead, they enhance the TA team’s productivity, candidate engagement and hiring success.
Adopting AI in HR tech
Due to the pandemic, workflow automation has become commonplace in many organisations; this is especially true for TA teams who have seen their hiring needs grow exponentially. Accelerating the digital transformation of a business is stressful and complicated, and talent acquisition leaders can find themselves working overtime or helping with internal communication while simultaneously watching their email box as it explodes with endless questions from applicants in the pipeline. This is where automation can help streamline the process and alleviate some of the painfully monotonous recruitment tasks.
For example, HR teams can use chatbots to guide applicants to the right vacancy based on their skills and the job description. Because these chatbots can answer thousands of frequently asked questions simultaneously, recruiters can spend less time on repetitive tasks. Implementing knock-out questions into a chatbot pushes the right talent to the forefront, which is incredibly helpful for busy recruiters who have high job requisition counts and little to no time to screen candidates. As a result, there’s more time to spend on bringing in the best candidates.
Recruiting automation can also exist outside organisation’s careers website. Being where the candidates are is a modern way to catch talent’s attention outside of traditional careers platforms. Such as integrating chat capabilities for WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and other social messaging platforms.
Direct messaging solution software, like our solution, SmartMessage, centralises all candidate communications across SMS, WhatsApp, and email into one view. It’s a game-changer for hiring teams that no longer need to waste time juggling multiple systems. They can manage all hiring communications within one central inbox which is innately compliant to keep candidate data safe.
Some of our clients using direct messaging capabilities have seen higher conversion rates and better response rates. One client found applications preferred text messages much more to email with an increase in the open rate to 98% and a 45% response rate. In modern recruiting, timeliness is critical for success.
According to a study by PWC, nearly half (49%) of job seekers say they’ve turned down an offer because of a bad candidate experience. One of the most common negative scenarios candidates experience is sending their CV to a prospective employer only to never hear back or receive a response too late.
From the recruiter’s side, we know that this results from too many applicants and too few resources. Digital recruitment tools allow recruiters to handle and reply to higher volumes of applicants as it allows recruiters to sift through applications quickly and shortlist the most qualified candidates. A volume-ready recruitment solution enables the maintenance of high hiring standards despite the increase in applicant volume. Don’t lose out on top talent because your tech stack isn’t up to date.
Upgrading your tech stack and implementing HR technology will enables effective recruitment and onboarding processes. Efficient onboarding also increases employee effectiveness and engagement, particularly during their first few months into the job, which is critical when up to 25% of new employees quit within the first few months.
The pandemic has shifted the hiring process dramatically, and to maximise the productivity of teams, enhance the hiring process, and advance over competition – organisations must implement innovative HR technology. Afterall, a business’s greatest differentiator, is its people.