5 emerging trends in talent acquisition

We’ve come a long way since mailing in resumes and phone call interviews. In our competitive job recruiting environment, companies need to experiment with new technologies and innovative approaches to recruit, onboard and retain new employees. Fortunately, technologies are becoming less expensive, more effective and offer a wider reach to candidates.

The need to embrace new HR strategies has become more critical with more than 25 percent of the US labor force voluntarily change jobs each year, in addition to downsizing, economic uncertainties, offshore and local competition.

New HR strategies needs to be relevant to current market trends. In this article we explore 5 recruitment and hiring trends that should influence your hiring strategies.

Trend #1: Social Media Recruiting Solutions

Social media has impacted all of us, young and old, from communicating with friends and family, connecting with brands, shopping, and now even recruiting. The power of social media lies in its targeting and rating capabilities – your talent search can be as broad or as narrow as you want and candidates can be qualified by previous employers.

The sheer quantity of data that social media platforms have on individuals is staggering. Recruiters are able to use this data to target a potential candidate by their current or previous work places, specific qualifications, education and more.

It’s estimated that in the US, approximately 73% of recruiter’s job candidates come through social media (source: Jobvite), making this recruiting solution an integral part of your hiring strategy.

It’s important to understand the strengths of each platform for the calibre of candidate you’re likely to find on each. For example, Linkedin—which allows companies to create Career Pages, and run targeted recruitment ads—is going to be the best source of top quality tech talent.

Dell is a prime example of a company that has nailed a social media recruiting solution. Like many top companies, it has dedicated career social profiles and uses these pages to promote the company culture, involves employees with testimonials and pose questions almost daily. These practices have helped earn Dell a reputation as a top employer.

When there is high demand but low supply of top quality talent, companies must stand out. Your social profiles are an opportunity to show what working for the company would be like, and to highlight your company’s unique value proposition, encouraging talented candidates to apply.

The more creative you can be, the more your brand will stand out, and the more potential candidates you can reach. Hiring managers can also proactively search for potential candidates by reaching out to them and working on building a relationship early in their job search. With this approach, you might find people who aren’t even considering leaving their current position, therefore aren’t actively searching.

Sites like UpWork and Indeed—freelancing platforms where businesses and independent professionals connect and collaborate remotely—can be an excellent source of highly skilled candidates that might not otherwise be on the corporate talent radar.

If it works for your brand, and the type of talent you are trying to recruit, taking advantage of unconventional social media platforms such as Pinterest can put your brand front and centre.

Social recruiting is more than posting current vacant jobs ads on your company’s social network accounts. Not only can you build your brand online, but you can cast a wider net in the search for talented individuals, finding people who may have slipped through the cracks with conventional hiring practices.

Trend #2: Leveraging technology and AI

This is a trend that is pervasive but very few companies understand its impact or what it really means. Despite that, AI is a reality. It’s here, and it’s here to stay. AI and data can be used in almost every stage of the hiring process from deciding which jobs to fill, writing job descriptions, vetting resumes, scheduling interviews, interviewing candidates and even onboarding new employees. By eliminating these tasks, artificial intelligence in the workplace is saving recruiters time, money, and energy. 

AI is not going to entirely replace traditional hiring methods, but it can certainly help along the way. A good interview technique and the right qualifications can only get candidates so far when AI is involved.

  • Online soft skills assessments that measure traits like teamwork and curiosity give a more holistic picture of candidates early in the hiring process. Recruiting solutions such as HireVue and TalentPitch measure candidates’ skills and personalities against those who have been successful in the same jobs previously.
  • AI chatbots can be implemented to answer many standard questions than a new hire or potential new hire may have, freeing up hiring managers for more pressing issues.
  • Predictive analytics can help to answer ‘unknown’ questions about a candidate. For example, are they likely to leave the company within a year? Some platforms can evaluate two similar candidates and predict which one is the better based on things like eye movement and stammering, both of which could indicate that people are not telling the truth.
  • Machine learning advancements means that resumes of individuals who have applied in the past can be screened for words or phrases that would make that applicant an ideal candidate for a new position.
  • Virtual Reality is also playing a part in new hiring trends. For example, companies can immerse candidates in simulated 3D environments to test their skills in a standardized way.

Trend #3: Find talent in a dynamic workforce

Many companies are now choosing to hire consultants, contractors and freelancers as part of a dynamic workforce They are hiring as and when they need, rather than investing in full-time employees. And a growing number of businesses – not just technology companies – are embracing hiring of remote workers.

This tactic appears to be especially relevant for companies looking for ways to flex their workforces in response to changing business conditions. The number of people in alternative work arrangements is on the rise. In fact, according to a recent Marist poll, within ten years contractors and freelancers could make up half the American workforce.

Trend #4: Mobilize internal resources

Organizations should look much more strategically at moving current employees into available opportunities across the enterprise. While this tactic may seem obvious on the surface, most companies have not tapped into this option to its fullest potential, making it a very promising way to go after much-needed talent.

A talented internal hire that has already proven themselves to be a good cultural fit can often be retrained for a role for much less than the cost of hiring an external candidate. Their skills and personality are already well-known, and there is no “probation” period to see if there is a fit.

Where organizations are lacking is in internal communication! Often, internal employees are not aware of a role within the organization that needs filling because they are not actively searching for a new position externally, where the recruitment efforts are focused.

Trend #5. Recruitment Marketing

Recruitment marketing is a strategy where the process of hiring new employees emulates that of attracting and landing new clients by using marketing methods and tactics. There is a recruitment funnel: recruiters must attract new employees, capture their interest in terms of working for the organization, make them want to work at the organization, and have that result in an application. Once the application is received, good applicants must be nurtured in the same way that a new lead would be.

Not all applicants for a position can be hired right away, and as a recruiter, it can be very hard to see a great candidate disappear because there was no positions available for them at that time. It’s therefore critical to keep in touch with candidates and keep them abreast of any new openings, interesting events or changes within the organization, and essentially work on building a relationship between the candidate and your company so when a suitable position becomes available, the lines of communication are already open.

In this way, the process of talent acquisition is being seen as an experience – one which must be as positive as possible. From timely communication, to interviews, to employees onboarding practices, it is all an opportunity for companies to continue to build their brand.

Finding the right people for vacant positions is getting harder. It requires creativity, ingenuity and a rethink of traditional methods. The talent is there, but the best candidate might not be where you are looking. In order to remain competitive with a strong, talented workforce, hiring managers must embrace new platforms and new technologies to enhance not only the recruitment experience, but also the organization’s brand.

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Feedback and comments are always welcome. If you have any questions, you are welcome to contact me at patrick.viernes@amaxra.com You can also connect with me via LinkedIn at linkedin.com/in/patrick-viernes.

about the author

Patrick Viernes

Patrick Viernes is Amaxra’s Resourcing Director. He has responsibilities for revenue growth and delivering the highest level of value to clients and consultants. Patrick worked in Microsoft for 12 years, leading Field Engagement for Worldwide Public Sector. He developed a community of leaders serving Government, Health, Education customers from over 70 countries.

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