Looking back at old films and cartoons, they’d have us believe that by now technological advances would have us driving to our jobs in flying cars or through teleportation tubes. We’d then arrive and put on our headsets and work on virtual reality screens whilst our robot assistants scuttled around us. Now, unless your workplace is very different to mine, things haven’t quite advanced at the rates predicted. However, we have seen a growing influence of technology in the workplace and in the way we recruit – and this will only continue to grow.
Taking it all online
Do you remember filing cabinets? Now, I realise that these hulking great pieces of metal haven’t quite been entirely condemned to the scrapyards just yet. However, the chances are that if you need a particular document, I’m willing to bet that you’re probably headed to some form of ‘cloud’ to find it.
There are now so many ways to store and collaborate on documents online and it’s the same for recruitment processes. Gone are the days where application reviews have to be done on actual paper and candidate review committees have to be done in person. Digital recruitment systems have revolutionised our processes and brought them all online. Applications can now be stored, filtered, reviewed and scored all on one platform, by any number of stakeholders.
Enabling this to all take place online allows for significant savings in time, providing the opportunity for people to carry out these tasks in their own time, from their own desks.
There is also a growing trend of candidate services being taken online. Online application forms have been fairly commonplace for a while now (although candidates still find the dreaded ‘downloadable form’ in some places). However, there are a number of other candidate services that are being taken online. These range from systems that support online self-service interview booking, online assessment (saving candidates from attending an assessment centre in person) to online video interviews.
Moving forward, candidates will become increasingly accustomed to doing significant portions of the application and recruitment process online. The days of downloadable forms will become a thing of the past (we can only hope!) and those that aren’t able to provide that online experience will find that they increasingly miss out on the best candidates.
With the seismic shift in power into a candidate driven market, organisations have been forced to change their approach to recruitment. With candidates holding the power, it is now up to the employers to distinguish themselves from the competition in order to do this.
Technology has played a significant role in this, as it provides the necessary tools and platforms to allow organisations to tell their stories effectively, and in new and exciting ways.
Candidates visiting employer websites to find out more information about the organisation can now be engaged in any number of ways. Whether this simply be a highly-functional and visually stimulating website, or engaging content like video or podcasts that put a voice and a face to the organisation.
Technology is enabling employers to stand out from their competition and get a first-class employer brand in place in the medium that candidates want to now consume information.
What the future holds…
As topics such as diversity become increasingly prominent in the recruitment world, we’ll look to technology for the solutions. One of the challenges in recruiting a diverse workforce is the influence of unconscious bias. No matter how good intentions might be, bias can always creep in and this can have a detrimental impact on recruiting a genuinely diverse workforce. A potential solution for this is the introduction of Artificial Intelligence, completely removing any human bias from the screening process.
For many of us, virtual reality (VR) will make us think of huge headsets at a science museum. Our experiences mostly involving heavily pixelated worlds or rollercoaster simulations. However, the world of virtual reality has made some huge advances in recent years and is gradually becoming prominent in various walks of life. The technology has previously been too pricey for wide scale use; however, it has become significantly more accessible in recent years. Especially since the introduction of virtual reality experiences through mobile phones.
We expect to see increasing numbers of employers incorporating VR into their recruitment strategies. This might include virtual tours of workplaces (especially useful for candidates who might be looking to relocate), as well as immersive VR interview and assessment experiences.
Gamification is another rising trend that we expect to see increasingly incorporated into recruitment. Using game theory, mechanics and design, gamification offers a different way of engaging and assessing candidates. Gamification has been identified as a way to stimulate candidates and encourage application completion. It also serves an organisation’s employer brand and helps to distinguish you from other employers who are all doing the same thing.
Whilst flying cars may still be the stuff of science fiction, technology is bringing new and exciting developments into our lives every day. Whether it’s streamlining your processes, providing time-saving solutions or enhancing your candidate experience, make sure your harnessing the power of the machines!