Don’t automate people out of the hiring process. Invest in technology to support the people in the process instead.
Automation has been a major focus for TA leaders in the past five years, supported by a plethora of new tools that help teams speed up tasks such as sourcing and candidate qualification. But for all the value created by ostensibly freeing up more time for other priorities, little has changed at the heart of the hiring process.
Hiring technology is still missing out on the most important ingredient — what happens between people in hiring conversations. Specifically, hiring technology has yet to really change how people hire.
“Whether you leverage technology or not, ultimately a person is being hired to work with other people inside the organization,” says Sarah Wilson, Head of People at SmartRecruiters. “There is an element of mutual respect, mutual understanding, competence, camaraderie, and sense of community that you want to feel with an employer that you’re going to consider working for, and likewise that the employer wants to feel from you.”
Removing low-value tasks through automation doesn’t impact the most important outcome: quality. If TA leaders employ algorithms to spot the most promising resumes, automate scheduling, and streamline first level assessments, saving time doesn’t matter so much if they still hire the wrong candidates.
Having moved beyond baseline automation and efficiency, many TA leaders are turning their sights to more strategic priorities like hiring quality and inclusivity. The good news is that they now have new technology at their fingertips focused on the human parts of the hiring process, that can have an enormous impact on these critical outcomes.
How teams can use new technology to transform hiring outcomes.
1) Deliver a Great Candidate Experience
Hiring technology that facilitates collaboration between team members over automating the process may make the difference between successfully hiring a quality candidate or not.
“If you eliminate all of the personal contact and you go into a position where everything is automated, then the connectedness to the brand is less,” says Wilson. “I think the likelihood of loyalty is lower, [as is] the likelihood that they’ll forgive you if you make a mistake during the onboarding process.”
Instead, new technology like BrightHire’s allows for more seamless handoffs, preventing asking the same questions multiple times, and using time more efficiently — all major contributors to a quality candidate experience.
2) Run a More Fair and Consistent, Less Biased, Process
Interview data is another missing piece of the puzzle that teams shouldn’t go without.
It’s easy to let unconscious bias determine decisions, even with the best of intentions. Bringing structure into every conversation and relying on documented evidence from the interview process can help all team members recheck their initial impressions.
“It’s like watching the tape as a sports team,” says Wilson. “You may be a way more generous interviewer in the morning after you’ve had a coffee or lunch. And so you can pull behavioral data that can help coach your hiring teams to be more objective.”
3) Make Better, More Confident Hiring Decisions
Relying on interview evidence over faulty memory also has all kinds of benefits towards hiring outcomes. TA leaders can get second opinions on candidates who are a 50/50 tossup. What’s more, they can analyze what interview inputs actually lead to better hiring outcomes.
“[With interview insights, you can tell] oh, actually, I did get a bad outcome from this candidate or a bad response from this candidate on this question, but I asked in this weird way. No wonder they didn’t understand it very much,” says Wilson.
Conversation insights like that allow for long-term course correction that benefits the whole process.
4) Improve Efficiency and Speed, Without Removing People from Decision Making
Most teams want to use automation to improve efficiency and speed. Using interview data allows TA leaders to gather evidence around the most effective hiring practices. It also helps teams share conversations and course correct in real time.
“Investment in recruiter capability should result in a higher percentage of offers accepted, and a higher percentage of first offers accepted without salary negotiations,” says Wilson. With consistent interview evidence, “You can suss out the right fit quickly. And then hiring teams can get to the core of what they really need.”
At the end of the day, improving hiring outcomes rests on the interactions between candidates and employers. Visionary TA leaders will see how using technology to support quality interactions — instead of eliminating them — will change hiring outcomes for the better.
BrightHire helps forward-thinking organizations build more talented and diverse teams. You can learn more about our product here.