In today’s era of digital disruption, almost every industry is adopting mobile technology- from retail stores to health care to banks. Every company seems to be having their own mobile apps, making themselves more accessible and appealing to the consumers. Recruitment industry is not far behind and has entered the space of mobile technology; candidates are searching and applying for jobs through their mobile phones and some organizations are successfully leveraging mobile technology to screen and hire the candidates. ‘Mobile recruitment’ is fast catching up and creating enough pressure on the HR professionals and recruiters to bring it into the mainstream so that they do not lose out on the smart applicants. It is speculated that by 2017 almost a third of all mobile users in India will own smart phones1 and India being the second largest number of mobile phone users will soon surpass other countries in terms of mobile usage. In the recruitment space, a recent study by Linkedin2 revealed that mobile-enabled recruiting adoption will nearly double in the next 12 months. Major mobile-enabled recruiting tactics will include mobile career sites, mobile recruiting apps, recruiting through text and social recruiting.
Earlier, when LinkedIn and online job applications had started gaining momentum, they were mostly looked at as additions to the conventional paper résumé and in-person interviews. Over a short span of time, these portals have made a tremendous progress; people are applying to some of the most lucrative jobs through these portals which are mobile-optimized and easy to use. These portals are being constantly upgraded to attract new customer base and provide the most relevant and ‘on the go learning’ experience to them, for an instance, Linkedin launched its newest mobile app, LinkedIn Students, to capture young users with a Tinder-like interface that offers a low-pressure LinkedIn experience: some career and leadership essays, a few suggested jobs and tips on improving their profile3.
As digital explosion continues, companies are bound to alter their approach towards talent search and the hiring process. A survey by Lee Hecht Harrison4 consulting firm found that 90 percent of job seekers use their mobile device in their job search in some way. So let’s take a look at how mobile technology is taking the world of recruitments by storm and addressing some of the common challenges associated with the traditional hiring:
1. Replacing tedious application system with an easy and quick system: Gone are the days when applicants had to undergo tedious application process on the job-board to get the desired jobs. Mobile recruitments have made the entire process much simpler and easier. With a mobile device, job seekers can search for the most relevant positions, apply for jobs that match their profiles, connect directly via social networks with recruiters and employers. It is proving to be extremely cost effective and time saving approach.
2. Managing millennials’ expectations: As the number of Gen Y and soon, Gen Z workers continue to increase, it is becoming imperative to manage their expectations which are very different from the older generation. They are highly competitive and restless and get bored easily if something doesn’t engage them. This is true for their hiring experience as well. Further, they place immense importance on how they are being treated, and if one employer makes it difficult to apply and takes too long to respond, they don’t hesitate to look for another job opening. Mobile recruitment grants them the opportunity to explore jobs of their interests at much faster rate and apply to it with minimal fuss. Since they are savvy with technology, they find the entire experience fun and engaging.
3. Streamlining recruiters’ experience: Along with job seekers, mobile technology is opening more opportunities and newer avenues for the recruiters/employers by granting them access to a much larger talent pool. Earlier it was hard to reach the passive and busy candidates but with mobile technology, it is very much possible to connect with them.
4. Enhancing employment brand: As more and more candidates are using their mobiles to browse job openings and read about employer information posted on the company website; organizations are designing their websites in a way that clearly reflects the company vision, mission and values. They are also seeking new ways to optimize their content, emails, and job postings for mobile interfaces. A good brand experience along with a smooth online application process, and clear job description are helping applicants to make the best choices. A survey of 16,000 candidates by IBM in 20165 indicated that 70% of high potentials see organisations offering a mobile experience as more attractive.
5. Paving way for quick, easy and fair assessments: A study by CEB6 suggests that the future of assessment is mobile. Few organizations have integrated mobile testing and assessment in their hiring system to ensure quick yet accurate and fair results. The best part is individuals don’t have to travel to remote places to deliver and take the assessments/interviews. A multitude of startups will continue their development of a variety of hiring-based mobile phone apps.
Mobile is being considered as the next frontier in the recruiting world. It’s impact will continue to expand in the coming years. Organizations which are contemplating to bring mobile recruitments into the mainstream should strategize well to ensure that their career site is well designed, mobile-optimized and engaging for the candidates. They also need to come up with more innovative mobile apps and assessment solutions which can yield better results.