Barely a week goes by without another clickbait headline about a dire future in which today’s jobs are done better and faster by robots. But it seems talent acquisition (TA) professionals aren’t taking the bait. In fact, a recent Korn Ferry survey found that almost 90% of TA respondents aren’t afraid in the slightest about AI replacing their jobs. On the contrary, almost 9 in 10 recruiters are excited about working more closely with new technologies.

Which is a good thing, because there’s a lot to be done. Currently, less than 50% of talent professionals are using applicant tracking systems, video interviewing, or online assessment tools according to Korn Ferry’s talent forecast survey .

There’s no doubt the race is on to capture the competitive advantage on offer from adopting new technologies. The tech is there, but it’s the human face of talent that will accelerate the impact new technologies offer, positioning TA as a true strategic partner for the future.

True tech support through the six stages of the recruitment process

The number and variety of tools emerging in the market can make it difficult to know where to start; to know your Wade from your Wendy. Taking a holistic view of the recruitment process, tech can assist at every step along the way from the first discussion with the hiring manager through to onboarding the successful candidate.

Plan: Sourcing information has never been easier and the rich data available means that even the earliest conversations with hiring managers can be informed by a specific view on what good looks like and the market realities for a particular role.

Search: Previously the stock-in-trade of the recruiter, AI tools have upped the ante on what it means to really mine your network. Good AI tools can augment job descriptions with specific success factors and indicators to evaluate willingness to move. The result is a supercharged set of search criteria to immediately zoom in on the best candidates, meaning recruiters and managers are spending their time on the right candidates from day one while elevating candidate care at the same time.

Engage: Korn Ferry research shows that organisational culture is top priority for candidates and savvy businesses are using tech to provide a glimpse into just what it would feel like to work in their organisation. Tech-driven campaigns like Heineken’s ‘Go Places’ offer candidates the opportunity to engage with the brand and make a judgment on fit. As the process continues, Chatbots keep candidates up-to-date and informed, stepping into the vacuum of information often experienced by candidates.

Select: Tech also offers new opportunities to engage candidates in the organisation’s brand throughout the select phase. Gamification of assessments creates another chance to offer candidates insight into the brand and perhaps even a little fun, through ‘recruitainment’. Video interviewing is also evolving into an essential tool to help allay the interviewing bottleneck, while gathering data on tone, keywords and body language free from recruiter bias.

Hire: Relying on data gathered throughout the process to make robust hiring (including remuneration) decisions helps to reduce bias and ensure the best candidate is selected and paid on an equitable basis.

Onboard: During the critical first 90 days, tech can act offer new recruits an all-knowing buddy and mentor available any time of the day. Apps can provide practical details on everything from new colleagues to where the best coffee is. They can also help reduce the time to impact through helping new employees plan who to meet and commencing on-the-job development from day one, drawing on data from the recruitment process.

Moving up the value chain

As new technologies change recruitment at each step of the process, it goes without saying that the role of the recruiter is fundamentally changing too. For talent professionals, this presents a tangible opportunity to focus on what the business needs strategically, moving away from the tactical demands of sourcing and selecting.

At the same time, business leads are looking to talent for more - from workplace planning to managing the EVP. This means embracing technology as more than a fad, more than a simply a cleverly branded chatbot providing updates and answering questions. It means mining the data on offer for insights and using it to elevate conversations and relationships between talent and the business.

To do this effectively, talent must have a clear vision for what technology can offer your business:

  • Know what the business needs: 53% of recruiters said they have too much data and don’t know what to do with it. Avoid data overload by understanding and anticipating what the business needs and collecting data for a purpose and then drawing relevant insights.
  • Integrate: While technology touches each step of the recruitment process, its long term value lies in a more holistic approach. For example, data collected in assessments can be used to inform development plans for new employees from day one.
  • Elevate the candidate experience: As businesses increasingly see candidates as part of their broader customer experience offering, technology will play a critical role in creating an exceptional candidate experience throughout the recruitment process and beyond it to maintain an engaged talent network.

Learn more about the impact of technology in recruitment as well as other trends in Korn Ferry’s Talent Forecast.

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About the contributor

Vinod Mohan is the Head of Professional Search. Based in Singapore, Vinod has over a decade of experience in the executive search and the talent sector and 6 years specific to the APAC market. Vinod's areas of expertise include talent management, sourcing strategies, market mapping, "High Po" search solutions and project and managed search. Vinod has successfully delivered "high impact" talent solutions to a diverse range of sectors including Aviation, Oil & Gas, the broader Industrial practice, Consumer and Healthcare across geographies.

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