Today’s recruitment efforts can have quite a bit in common with an advanced science experiment. Algorithms match talent to an organization’s needs or pinpoint stellar employee performance. Machine learning from Big Data can even predict which employees are most likely to quit.
However, just because technology improves certain recruiting functions doesn’t mean hiring managers will be out of work anytime soon.
Technology simplifies the more mundane tasks of recruiting, such as combing through thousands of resumes to find qualified candidates, but there are many areas where it simply cannot (or at the very least shouldn’t) replace the human aspect.
Candidates don’t want to be hired by a machine
Personal relationships are key to filling positions. In many cases, recruiters are the ones who make a first impression on applicants. Just as potential hires need to sell themselves to the company, recruiters are tasked with selling their employer brand to candidates. New hires will have a hard time getting a feel of the company culture or negotiating a contract with avatars.
Hiring decisions require intuition
“An organization can have the best ATS [applicant tracking system] on the market, but attracting candidates and filling positions comes down to personal interactions between applicants, recruiters and interviewers,” Patrick Clark writes in Business 2 Community. Through face-to-face interactions and situational conversations, recruiters glean important — but not always immediately apparent — information about candidates. They catch subtle, nonverbal cues and personality indicators to understand whether individuals will mesh with the company culture.
Internal hires and employee referrals still rule the roost.
Companies trust their employees. That’s why internal hiring and referrals from current employees account for the majority of hires, according to the CareerXroads 2013 Source of Hire Report. While software certainly can make the employee referral process easier, recruiters can understand the internal and external relationships that play a significant part in recommending and evaluating talent.
Technology enhances the work that recruiters already do
Rather than displace workers, technology helps them do their jobs better. It helps them post to job boards and schedule interviews efficiently. Technology also broadens the talent pool to global and social audiences. It makes it easier for recruiters to identify talent that they might not otherwise have found.
Technology makes a recruiter’s job more strategic
“When you automate the right tasks, then it frees up time to do the in-person ones better. And when used correctly, technology makes HR even more human”, Clark writes. “Automating the administrative aspects of hiring enables you to focus on strategy, build relationships with candidates and find new hires who will be the best fit for your business needs.”