NEWS + ADVICE
Current Trends for Evaluating Candidates
The recruitment process has become highly transactional. The never-ending search for top talent, the continuous scheduling and tedious screenings are often inefficient and monotonous. It’s time to think about new ways to recruit and evaluate candidates that will concentrate on the more rewarding aspects of the process – the human connection and strategic thinking.
A 2018 report1 on recruitment identified trends that are bringing more strategy to the process while allowing recruiters to focus on identifying high-potential talent.
The four trends that rose to the top were:
- New interviewing tools
- Artificial intelligence
Diversity is the new mindset
78% of recruiters believe that diversity is the most significant trend that impacts how they hire. Old diversity practices used to be a box on a form, but today it has become linked to company culture and fiscal improvements.
A primary factor in play is the knowledge that shifting demographics are differentiating our communities and reducing the number of potential candidates for organizations that don’t adapt. There is significant evidence that diverse teams become more productive, offer more innovation and are much more engaged.
Top two reasons companies focus on diversity:
- Improved culture
- Improved company performance
New Interviewing Tools
The second most impactful trend mentioned by 56% of recruiters was the use of new interview tools. Traditional interviews have not become instinct but they are thought to be a less than effective way to evaluate candidates. Some believe the traditional way may challenge the impact of more useful information and bring more bias into the process.
As an example, attractive and charming candidates are not necessarily better qualified but unconsciously it can be assumed that they are. Research respondents stated that traditional interviews offer a limited way to access soft skills or weaknesses. How do you evaluate determination in a job seeker or spot incompetence through a chat?
Five techniques should help improve the old model:
- Online soft skills assessments can measure qualities like teamwork and curiosity giving a more thorough scope of candidates.
- During job auditions companies will pay candidates to perform real work so that they can witness skills in action.
- Casual interviews can take place in a restaurant and might offer a unique look into a candidate’s character, including manners, courtesy to wait staff, poise, tolerance, etc.
- With virtual reality (VR), companies take candidates through a simulated 3-D environment to examine their skills in a uniform way.
- Video interviews can either be recorded or live and help by reviewing a broader talent pool more efficiently.
Data becomes a superpower
An even 50% of recruiters stated that data is the current trend that’s the most significant piece in their hiring process.
Recruiting has typically been a people profession but today’s trends indicate that it’s also a numbers game. The research shows that most talent acquisition professionals are using data with more recruiters indicating they will begin using it within the next couple of years.
Data becomes valuable to the recruiting process when you can rely on facts and statistical analysis to back up your hiring decisions, including elements like narrowing the field of candidates or refining your plans for hiring. Talent acquisition professionals who rely on data are believed to be more efficient — lowering company costs and streamlining their hiring.
You can begin data collection by choosing a few important hiring measurements to track. Most every company can benefit from gauging quality of hire, because this information indicates the overall effectiveness of your hard work. Other reliable measurement resources include:
- Cost-per-hire (Try Workable’s cost-per-hire calculator)
- Source of hire
- Candidate experience scores (e.g. application conversion rates, candidate feedback)
- Job offer acceptance rates
AI is a mighty workhorse
From the research, 35% of recruiters report that AI is the trend most impacting their process. While AI has become a buzz word, there are few organizations that fully understand its impact. AI is showing a strong foothold in recruitment and is poised to assume some of the more repetitive tasks.
As an example, software is available today that will allow you to automate job seeker searches and efficiently match prospects. Other current technology will assist in the screening process before recruiters even talk with candidates.
Where AI is most helpful:
- Identifying candidates
- Screening candidates
- Fostering relationships
- Scheduling candidates
When you tally the effects of these tasks the time savings can be huge. For the more sophisticated parts of recruiting, like interviewing candidates, it’s not a surprise that AI isn’t as effective. And for many of us, particularly in smaller and medium-sized contractors, it may be years before we see effective tools.
These four trends are predicted just to be the start of a movement to render obsolete the transactional elements of recruiting and evaluating candidates. Embrace these trends and continue to look for new ways to improve the process. Doing so can make you more effective while offering more job satisfaction.