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New trends in recruitment and selection

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Recruitment is one of the most powerful and important areas over the overall business, but what is changing and how can you spot the new emerging trends and be at the forefront of efficient hiring? Tom Haak, Founder and Director of The HR Trend Institute talks us through exactly what he thinks will be trending in the […]

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Recruitment is one of the most powerful and important areas over the overall business, but what is changing and how can you spot the new emerging trends and be at the forefront of efficient hiring? Tom Haak, Founder and Director of The HR Trend Institute talks us through exactly what he thinks will be trending in the recruitment space across this coming year.

1. It is all about the candidate experience

As outlined above, unfortunately many experiences of candidates are still poor. Designing an attractive and relevant candidate experience, as the first step in the longer employee journey, is very important. As we described in our article “Where to start when you want to improve the employee experience“, not all the elements of the employee journey are easy to change. Redesigning the recruitment process is probably one of the easier ones. Recruitment is often a high priority (“We need new people, fast”), and recruitment is a process that many people understand. The big consultancy firms generally do a good job in the initial phases of recruitment: their attractive business courses for talented students, taking place at nice locations, are well known (and expensive). Designing a business course that is attractive is relatively easy, it is more difficult to make sure all employees (and ex-employees) contribute to a positive candidate experience.

2. Semi-automatic referrals

Recruiting via referrals is increasingly important for organisations. Where initially referral programs worked mainly with money as a reward, you now see more game-like rewards as well (points, leaderboards, badges).

3. AI powered search (or: from active to passive candidates)

The candidate search software is quickly becoming more powerful (all of them are “AI powered”, of course). If you give the machine an indication of the type of candidates you are looking for, it will start a broad search, and deliver a long-list of potential candidates quickly. You can feed the machine with a list of requirements, but also with the profiles of people who are already successful in your organisations (or other organisations) in the domain where you are looking for candidates. This development will probably also mean the end of the traditional job boards, where you can post vacancies. Why would you need a job board, if your machine can search almost everywhere? Of course, candidates need to be visible online, but today most candidates are visible. The software will also look at the personality profile of potential candidates, to check if there is a match between the personality of the candidate and the ‘personality’ of the organisation.

The initial contact between candidates on the long-list and the organisation, can be done by chatbots, via the preferred platform of the potential candidate (FaceBook chat, WhatsApp, WeChat etc.). The chatbot can do the initial screening. “Hi Tom, are you interested in an opportunity in Winnipeg?” “No.” “Thank you for your candid answer. Are you interested in new opportunities anyway?”

4. From fixed jobs to fluid roles

Organisations are more creatively using the opportunities of a more flexible workforce. It helps to think less in terms of jobs and more in terms of assignments. There is an assignment to be done, and how can we quickly find the best possible people who can (and want to) do the assignment?

Organisations are less organised around fixed jobs, and more around flexible teams, that look for suitable candidates in the internal- and external talent pool. Candidates are recruited to strengthen a pool. It is important they have the right skills, and that they fit well culturally in the organisation.

An example of a solution that can be used to establish teams with people that together have the skills and the motivation to get the assignment done, is Part-up. 

5. Clever and automatic candidate selection

Humans are not very good at selection. The combination human and machine can improve the quality of selection a lot. especially in areas where performance can be clearly shown and measured, developments are going fast. If you are coding software, you feed the machine with a piece of code you have written, and then the machine will determine how good you are, and in what type of team you will fit and add value, as teams have different coding styles. No CV, no diploma, just some of the work you have done.

6. Chat bots to improve communication, and to improve the recruitment process

Chatbots are in increasingly used in recruitment, to have conversations with candidates. They can save recruiters a lot of time, by answering the first questions of candidates, and helping to make the first selection. The chatbots can talk with applicants on the website of organisations, but also through the various social media (Facebook chat, WhatsApp, WeChat, Slack). The chatbot asks questions, and the applicants can give answers by typing text, or by answering a multiple-choice question. (“Are you interested in a job in France? Please answer yes or no.“ “No.“ “I am sorry, we do not have opportunities outside France now. I will contact you if a suitable opportunity occurs, Thank you.“)

There are more trends on my list (like “resumes and motivation letters are becoming less important”, “the further rise of data driven recruitment”), but as I am running out of time and space, the six trends above will have to do.

This article was published earlier on the website of the HR Trend Institute

Tom Haak is the director of the HR Trend Institute where this article has been curated from, which follows, detects and encourages trends in the people and organization domain and in related areas. Where possible, the institute is also a trend setter.

Tom has an extensive experience in HR Management in multinational companies. He worked in senior HR positions at Fugro, Arcadis, Aon, KPMG and Philips Electronics.

He has a keen interest in innovative HR, HR tech and how organisations can benefit from trend shifts.

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