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article imageQ&A: How technology is reshaping recruitment Special

By Tim Sandle     Sep 7, 2018 in Business
Today’s job market is highly competitive and millennials with key skills, such as tech skills, can hold the upper hand. This means businesses need to work hard to attract top talent. Aman Brar of Canvas looks at tech developments in recruitment.
Aman Brar is CEO and board member of Canvas, a text-based intelligent interviewing system that enables organizations and recruiters to screen more job candidates and market employment brands. The adoption of such new technologies is essential for companies to recruit top millennial talent.
In conversation with Digital Journal, he provides his thoughts on how technology is reshaping the recruitment process.
Digital Journal: What is the current state of the recruitment market?
Aman Brar: Employees are still the most significant investment an organization will make for its future. Recruiting the right people is an integral part of any business plan, but unfortunately, it is also a challenging and time-consuming task.
Recruiters are at a disadvantage in today’s hyper-connected society. There are several barriers that run the risk of impeding talent acquisition, including a negative candidate experience, ineffective employment branding, drawn-out recruiting processes and the inability to reach a busy, on-the-go workforce.
DJ: What do recruiters need to do differently?
Brar: Today’s recruiters should think more like marketers by promoting positions as a product to the workforce. By building an employment brand, job seekers get a better idea of what it will be like to work within the organization and how they will fit into the overall culture of the company.
The 2017 Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends Report finds that talent acquisition is the third most important challenge organizations face today. Hiring is daunting and expensive, and there is a lot at stake as a single bad hire can cost a company nearly $15,000, according to CareerBuilder.
Given the high pressure of acquiring top talent in today’s competitive job market, recruiters and hiring managers cannot afford inefficient communication practices or delays in the interviewing process.
DJ: How has new technology altered the recruitment process?
Brar: Over the last century, the process for reaching candidates evolved from window signs and in-person interviews, to online listings and phone interviews. While technological shifts have changed how people communicate, they have also created a more dynamic, ever-evolving business world. To keep up, recruiters must stay on the cutting edge and engage with talent in the most efficient ways possible.
The latest technology trend to positively impact recruiters is the utilization of text messaging. By screening talent via text, a team of four recruiters can save 3,689 hours per year. A good recruiter will typically do about four to six phone screens per day, between scheduling and taking notes, while recruiters can do up to 10 times that volume using the Canvas text-based recruiting platform. In addition, the average text screen takes just 4.4 minutes. Plus, you can have multiple conversations with candidates asynchronously.
DJ: How is this impacting on recruitment?
Brar: One of the biggest delays for recruiters and HR professionals comes at the onset of the interview process, where screening a high volume of candidates gets delayed by waiting for qualified applicants to call back.
The job interview process is getting longer, to recruiters’ detriment. From application to offer, today’s average overall job interview process takes nearly 23 days. Shouldn’t we be shaving days off of this process? That’s compared to 12.5 days just seven years ago. Texting is helping recruiters expedite the hiring process once again.
DJ: Are millennials seeking different things from the recruitment process?
Brar: Recruiters need to capture the attention of the next generation of talent job by engaging with them on their turf. Their cell phones.
While Millennials and Gen Z-ers (and the rest of the generations still present in the workforce, really) are constantly on their cell phones, they’re hitting “decline” as soon as the phone rings, even when a recruiter is on the line.
According to a recent Yello survey, 86 percent of the 1,400 adults (ages 18-30) polled felt positively when recruiters or hiring managers used text messages during the interview period, a 7 percent increase from 2016. In addition, recent research from the KPCB 2016 Internet Trends Report states that only 12 percent of millennials and 29 percent of Gen Xers favor the phone for business communication.
DJ: What is the impact of this trend?
Brar: Picking up the phone and calling talent to screen them is unscalable and outdated. Imagine in the world of dating, if you had to call everyone you were interested in dating as a first introduction? Dating sites and apps have proven that starting a process purely via text could lead to your partner in life, and Canvas has proven it could also lead to your next project manager, sales associate or software engineer.
Texting isn’t just for the younger generation of talent either. Nearly all adults have a cell phone, and the numbers are growing. According to Mobile Marketer, 60 percent of individuals over age 45 say they are just as likely to use texting as voice calling. In addition, Club Texting reports that 98 percent of people between ages 30 and 49 years old text, and 92 percent of those over age 50 text.
Additionally, a study by Nielsen found that texting is now the most utilized data service worldwide, with 18.7 billion texts sent every day. With nearly instant response times, texting can expedite the hiring process for both the recruiter and the candidate—regardless of their age.
In a follow-up interview, Aman Brar provides details of the text-message approach to recruitment and the services that Canvas offer. See: “Q&A: How text messaging can drives recruitment success.”
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