In a corporate world blighted by disruption and uncertainty, talent acquisition strategies have been ruptured in no small measure, and must now be pivoted in order to adhere to the changing times.
In strangely poetic fashion, ‘big data’ is an area of business that has seen a meteoric rise in recent years, and may now be poised to intercept and help change the face of talent acquisition. Many believe that this will make for a smarter and fairer process.
Earlier this month, we delved into this topic in great detail, as we proudly partnered with talent acquisition tech company Oleeo for a HRD Connect Webinar. Here are some of our key takeaways:
Talent acquisition challenges in 2020
As factors such as the economic outlook and political landscape change, employers must pivot their talent acquisition strategies in order to align with new requirements.
The strain on recruiters is also key here. One of the primary by-products of an employer-led market is the increasingly high volume of candidates that must now be processed for each role, and the numerous steps that are involved for each.
On average, applications for roles have doubled over the past two years, and what’s more, a dedicated recruiter can spend in excess of two months of their time reviewing initial candidate applications.
Finally, diversity and inclusion strategy has become the subject of major public debate in 2020, and must be tackled with more conviction than ever. Studies show that 61% of recruiters believe their function has not yet implemented a D&I strategy, and so if ever there was a time to shift the approach to talent acquisition, it’s now.
Smoothing out the process
In a space that has suffered the disorienting effects of coronavirus, and with 63% of recruiters stating that quality of hire is their greatest challenge yet, ‘recruiting enablement’ is now a no-brainer, Oleeo suggests. In layman’s terms, this is the practice of providing talent acquisition professionals with tools that they need to need to be effective and efficient at recruiting quality hires.
With ‘sales enablement’ now being a tried and true practice among many organizations, leaders can now apply the same principles to talent acquisition and expect to see the same results. Namely, removing the guesswork from the process, allowing data insights to drive the process, and subsequently seeing an improvement in overall efficiency and quality.
And this data-led approach appears to be gaining considerable traction, with research showing that 72% of enterprise say automating recruiting decisions is a priority in 2020. A telling statistic, but hardly surprising given this is thought to double the chances of improving the quality of hire.
What’s more, with the integration of data in the talent acquisition space, organizations can expect to be delivering a smoother and more personalized candidate experience, again ensuring that that high quality candidates are attained.
Hardwiring D&I into talent acquisition
Never before has it been worse to have a one-size-fits-all approach to recruiting. In 2020, organizations need to tailor processes to different roles, profiles, situations and markets.
Not only will this make for a greater quality of hire, but it will encourage the acquisition of more diverse talent, with recruiters venturing outside of the usual pool of candidates. With 90% of companies concerned about reducing bias in their talent acquisition process, this is more topical than ever.
To help organizations develop a clear vision of what’s needed, Oleeo describes diversity as the ‘Who’. Who is being hired? Who is being engaged and retained? And who is being developed and promoted?
Similarly, inclusion is described as the ‘how’. How are candidates being culturally welcomed and accepted? How is the organization creating a sense of belonging? How are you ensuring that everyone feels valued?
In a nutshell, organizations must keep these values in mind in pivoting their acquisition strategies.
Integrating data into talent acquisition
Using data and AI to reduce bias and improve acquisition is gradually becoming the new norm. In fact, 125% more companies are using AI to reduce bias this year than last.
One such example comes from the UK Metropolitan Police. Data-driven insights were used to identify a dramatic drop-off for female candidates at the physical assessment stage. The insights clearly showed a male-dominant workforce, leaving female candidates feeling both intimidated and excluded.
To overcome this, the content was completely pivoted. Video content was created which showed a more inclusive workforce, encouraging women to apply.
The Met Police increased the number of women participating in a critical recruitment stage by 40%.
Concluding, Oleeo outlined a checklist for organizations attempting to integrate data into their recruiting process. In short the company must measure and collect data to the greatest extent possible, be rigorous in scrutinizing each metric, and allow it to inform and create a picture of the recruitment process and pipeline.