We’ve all had negative experiences with chatbots, where
answers seem narrow and unhelpful, particularly in customer service
interactions. Let’s face it, they can be infuriating, and this turns many
people off when thinking about using the technology in their own organisations.
However, technology is rapidly advancing, and this mindset
might have you missing out on a new generation of chatbots that can enhance
every step of your recruitment process. Conversational AI powers today’s
chatbots, and it could be a game-changer for your business.
conversational AI – what does it all mean?
It can feel like these terms are interchangeable, but there
are some notable differences. A bot is a piece of code that can perform actions
without language-based interaction, such as moving data between two
spreadsheets. A chatbot answers inquiries, and conversational AI is the
technology that allows it to determine intent.
Intelligent chatbots can play three critical roles in your
recruitment process, all of which can save you significant time and money while
delivering a better first impression.
information with ease
The first role is information collection. Recruitment is all
about data, and you want to capture the right amount of information to make the
best hiring decision.
From basic screening questions to scoring assessment
submissions, collecting and reviewing this information can be incredibly
time-consuming. Traditionally, online applications collect all this information
via long and detailed forms, which can be overwhelming and even off-putting for
candidates. The data then needs to be
reviewed by a team member, a process that quickly becomes exhausting and is
open to human bias.
impress.ai chatbots eliminate the need for these forms,
replacing them with a bite-sized step-by-step guided process that’s seamless
for candidates. The data is then transitioned smoothly into your system, giving
you a single source of truth.
Delivering a winning
With this technology, your recruitment process is always on.
Applicants can start and progress their application anytime, anywhere. This
approach is perfect for candidates who need to apply after hours or even
international recruitment programs.
Detailed and intelligent FAQ modules mean your system can
answer FAQs, learning as it goes along. And they are effective. impress.ai
conversational AI has up to a 98.4% success rate in answering candidate
inquiries instantly, without human interaction. And the small number of questions
that are too nuanced and complex are escalated to a dashboard where they can be
answered by a team member at the next available opportunity.
candidate from pre-screening to first interview
With impress.ai, chatbots can guide candidates through the
process, keeping them informed and engaged at every step to reduce candidate
dropout. Intelligent chatbots can guide your applicants through each step seamlessly, making
decisions based on real-time information.
For example, in the pre-screening phase, if the candidate
doesn’t meet the criteria for this specific role but may be suited to other
roles at your organisation,
the system can guide them away from the application process to your careers
platform to review other opportunities.
Those candidates who meet your screening criteria are guided
through to interview questions or skill-based assessments, such as Aon
Assessments. The chatbot can even decide which assessment is best for each
candidate based on their stated skill set.
It can then score
assessments and rank candidates, putting all the information at your
By completing these steps and guiding your candidates
through the process, the chatbot has ultimately performed the first interview
for you, delivering a high potential shortlist ready for progression.
Time to revisit your
If it’s been a while since you last looked at chatbot
technology for your organisation
– it may be a great time to revisit. Organisations
worldwide are gearing up for the Great Resignation, where some great talent
will be out there on the jobs market, and speed and efficiency will be vital to
making the most of the opportunity.
impress.ai clients have seen significant time and cost savings, with one client saving 311 hours of productivity and another, an impressive $66K (SGD) on just one graduate program. Our AI-powered solution increases speed, accuracy and quality of hires, all while delivering a winning candidate experience. If you are looking for a competitive edge in the recruitment market, get in touch to find out how we can help.
Today, most organisations promote themselves as equal
opportunity employers with fair and diverse hiring policies. And while most
recruitment and HR teams have the best intentions, this can be almost
impossible to guarantee when
manually screening candidates because we all have unconscious biases – those
underlying stereotypes we
don’t realise we hold.
Unconscious bias in your recruitment process has a flow-on
effect, impacting a range of commercial outcomes. In fact, recent global research by McKinsey highlights
the deepening relationship between high levels of diversity and financial
Alongside the many productivity and cost benefits,
impress.ai’s AI-powered recruitment workflow is the best way to eliminate bias
in your recruitment process and advance your diversity agenda. Here’s how it
#1 Automating the
application and screening process
By automating candidate screening, applicants are evaluated
and progressed against specific role criteria, not personal opinions. From
essential application criteria to intelligent review of written submissions and
question responses, impress.ai can deliver bias-free hiring.
A specific template guides the process for each role. The
recruiter simply selects the corresponding template, which breaks the role down
into the required competencies, knowledge, skills and experience. At every step
in the process, applications, resumes, assessments and responses are evaluated
against these alone. AI-powered chatbots can even perform interviews,
intelligently reviewing and evaluating open-ended text responses.
impress.ai integrates a range of best practice tools to
achieve this, including behavioural interviews, situational judgement interviews, work sample
tests, industry and role-specific assessments and case study interviews.
#2 Hiding information
that could lead to bias
impress.ai automatically hides demographic and personal information
that could influence outcomes. This includes name, gender, picture, date of
birth etc., so this irrelevant data doesn’t form part of shortlisting
Where this information is relevant to the hiring process,
it’s easy to disable the filter, allowing recruiters to view it. However, as a
further safeguard against human bias, an audit process takes place when the
filter is turned off and is available to senior management for review.
#3 Fighting the halo
The ‘halo effect’, whereby a candidate’s
submissions or responses are evaluated more positively or negatively due to a
belief you already hold about them, can contribute to making the wrong
hire. For example, suppose a recruiter
sees that an applicant attended a top university or perhaps their own alma
mater. In that case, they may be more likely to score that applicant’s written
submission higher than others, regardless of the quality.
impress.ai removes this risk in two ways. Firstly, by automating the screening process and secondly, by allowing the recruiter to evaluate all candidates’ responses to each question in sequence, rather than evaluating all the answers from one candidate at once. This means the recruiter assesses each answer independently, without carrying over the judgement of a candidate based on a previous response.
#4 Making it easy to
do the right thing
We understand that resources are finite, and teams must
decide where to deploy them for maximum impact. Technology can be an enabler,
but if it’s challenging to learn, hard to use or requires a developer to
customise, it won’t be used, or corners will be cut.
That’s one of the ways impress.ai is different – we make it
easy for your team to do the right thing with technology that is simple to use,
flexible and easily customisable in-house.
learning and updating
Your impress.ai workflow uses machine learning to
continuously improve and update itself based on real-time candidate and
recruiter actions. It’s simple to train the algorithm, any recruiter or HR team
member can do it, and we’ve even gamified it to make it engaging.
Diversity is a critical part of your recruitment, but it can
be challenging to deliver with a manual process. If you are ready to experience
what AI-powered recruitment can do for your business, increasing productivity,
reducing costs, and finding the best candidates while delivering on your fair
hiring agenda, get in touch with the impress.ai team.
The Great Resignation is a global employment trend that sees significant percentages of workers leave their current employment – and even their industry. Some parts of the world, including North America, are in the thick of it, and it will soon hit the APAC region. The Great Resignation will profoundly impact how we recruit and will be a double-edged sword for many organizations. While there is a chance you will lose some employees, it’s also an excellent opportunity to find great new talent, bringing fresh perspectives and a wealth of experience to your business – if you are ready for it.
Here’s how an AI-driven solution can give you an edge in a busy recruitment market:
1. Faster hires As top talent enters the marketplace, competition will be stiff, and those who move slowly risk losing out. AI-driven workflows can significantly speed up your recruitment process, moving the best candidates from pre-screening to interview stage at lightning speed, with little or no intervention from your team. In fact, impress.ai clients have experienced up to a 90% reduction in time to shortlist.
2. More accurate, fairer hiring When you have a large pool of applicants, screening can be an administrative headache. It’s also entirely inefficient and leaves your hiring process open to human bias. An automated workflow can do all of this for you. From screening candidates on basic requirements, such as citizenship status and qualifications, to assessing and scoring written submissions, progressing only the most suited candidates. With impress.ai, you can achieve up to 50% more accuracy in your hiring, driving your fair hiring agenda and delivering the most talented candidates for the job.
3. Delivering a better candidate experience Candidate dropout can be a significant issue for organizations, particularly in a competitive market. One of the leading reasons for this is poor candidate experience, and it’s easy to see why. In a busy market, it’s tough to maintain a consistent, high-quality experience when dealing with a large applicant pool. This is another area where an intelligent, automated workflow can help.
With impress.ai, you can create an automated workflow that delivers a high-quality experience from the initial application through to the interview stage. Our employer branding module delivers an on-brand experience at every step, and our customizable chatbots guide candidates through each stage seamlessly. These chatbots can even learn to answer a range of FAQs, so your recruitment is always on, answering candidate inquiries 24/7.
4. Reducing repetitive tasks and admin An automated workflow doesn’t just deliver you the best candidates quickly; it also reduces repetitive tasks and admin, giving your team time back to complete higher-value activities further up the chain. For just one client, implementing impress.ai saved an incredible 170+ hours of productivity on graduate program recruitment and reduced costs by over SGD $62,000.
Are you ready for the Great Resignation? Visit impress.ai to find out how our leading AI-driven solutions can transform your hiring process.
Startups live in a dynamic environment that is often driven by challenging goals. Also, there is typically a pressure to achieve these targets whilst utilising limited resources and time. Due to these tight budgets and schedule constraints, hiring is an area where they cannot afford to make mistakes.
Startups depend on the commitment and expertise of their employees to take them to the next level. A wrong hiring choice can be costly both financially and in Lost Time. A CareerBuilder survey noted that companies lost an average of $14,900 on every bad hire. Moreover, every mismatch of the role and employee pushes them back from their path to success.
The good news is that Startups are now using technology to hire the right candidates. Apart from eliminating human errors and judgement from the hiring process, technology also helps them to expedite their hiring process. Although it may seem like a significant investment at first, the value of onboarding a highly qualified team, with a streamlined recruitment process quickly offsets the initial cost.
Here is a round-up of technologies and tools that startups can utilise to fast-track their hiring process and recruit only the best talent.
Sourcing correctly to reach the right applicants
Sourcing is often the first step in hiring, but it does not have to be an area where you spend most of your time. However, talent professionals frequently spend almost 13 hours a week in sourcing. Traditional methods of searching top talent are not always the most effective. When your requirements are unique, or you have a mandate to hire a large team with niche skills, it becomes even more challenging and the value of the technology becomes clear.
With challenging requirements, you want a smart solution to deliver your mandates. Sourcing platforms can automate your Search and develop a targeted talent pipeline. Some of these tools are using Artificial Intelligence and analytics to fine-tune and automate your searches. The result is an intelligently sourced pool of new candidates, every day.
When the pipeline is readily available, your recruiters will save several precious hours of search. They can immediately start engaging with the candidates and have meaningful conversations with them due to additional time availability.
Screening and identifying the most qualified candidates
Manual processing of resumes can compromise the efficiency of the hiring process. The impact is more prominent for startups that want to make decisions quickly.
Due to the time constraints, recruiters tend to give only 7.4 seconds to each resume that they receive. Often, Talent Acquisition professionals have a lot on their plate and are tasked to fulfil their mandates within short timelines. When technology comes into this space, the result is a finely-pruned list of candidates which have automatically been assessed, scored and ranked for the given job opening, before the recruiter reaches out!
Case study of automating candidate engagement at scale for a large telco
impress.ai is an Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning-Powered Platform, which delivers Recruitment Automation and outstanding candidate experiences. The Impress chatbots will engage with the candidates during their application, assess them based on your job role requirements, and rank them in our dashboard or your ATS, based on their performance. From here, your team can proceed with the next steps in your interview process.
The Chatbots can also integrate Video Interviews, and any Third-Party Assessments into the Chatbot-led conversation, mitigating the need to schedule these recruitment steps separately. Finally, the Chatbots are equipped with Q&A functionality so that candidate questions are answered automatically.
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has fast-tracked the developments being made with remote working and virtual hiring. For instance, many organisations have become more comfortable with remote working, and after what can be called a test run, several of them are considering adopting this for the long-term. Read this article from the New York Times to learn how organisations are shifting towards virtual hiring – Job Interviews Without Interviewers, Products of the Pandemic.
This situation has also prompted recruiters to explore virtual hiring. Many of them have warmed up to automated video interviews. Using these tools, recruiters can administer a set of questions to the candidates, which can help to connect the hiring managers and the candidates. Many platforms record the answers which the recruiters can view at a convenient time, along with technologies to automatically assess the recorded answers.
Assessing the applicants to find the right job-fit and culture-fit
Hiring the right employees is all about finding the right fit. More often than not, startups are looking for unicorn candidates who can challenge status-quo and fuel innovation. Such candidates are difficult to come by.
One solution is to hire more experienced candidates with a proven track record. However, this talent comes at a price and typically has more expectations. Another option is to hire for the right attitude and potential.
Unfortunately, interviews are not always the right solution for this. Despite using the best methods, several hiring managers and recruiters still depend on gut feeling while making hiring decisions. A better approach is to use assessments which have been designed to assess particular attributes. These tests evaluate an individual’s skills, knowledge, abilities, traits, attitudes and more. Moreover, they can help you identify the candidate’s potential, and even validate your existing talent so you can hire more of the same!
Such assessment tools allow you to administer questions that relate to the set of attitudes and traits that match with the job opening. Based on the answers, you can probe further during the interviews for additional assurance.
Onboarding and engagement
Gone are the days when onboarding would begin on the day of joining! In these times, pre-boarding engagement has become crucial to keep candidates warm and reduce the risk of any last-minute surprises.
Historically, onboarding was a term that referred to the processes of form-filling and handing over decks of company policies. These days, it is a much broader term for a range of activities and processes that enable new-starters to become productive from day one.
Early productivity is even more crucial for startups that are battling a time crunch. Pre-boarding tools provide a glimpse to the new joiner about how the organisation is structured. Modern pre-boarding is now essential to deliver a delightful candidate experience and to start the new chapter with positivity.
No startup can become successful on just the basis of a great idea. What they need is a team of talented employees who can translate this idea into reality. In light of this, their recruitment habits form the foundation of their success. With the help of technology, startups can boost their hiring performance and help to build their desired environment.
Artificial Intelligence(AI) is creating ripples in the recruitment industry. At a time when talent is scarce, AI can enable organisations to fulfil their talent needs. However, despite being around for the last 60 years, organisations are yet to embrace AI with open arms. It is partly due to the myths and misconceptions that float around.
A general lack of understanding and unjustifiable fears have raised questions in the minds of people. Another challenge is that people take time to adjust to new products and tools. They are uncomfortable in stepping out of their comfort zones.
However, such misconceptions are only preventing organisations from achieving their full potential. When used in the right way, AI in recruiting can deliver exceptional results.
Let’s look at the most common myths surrounding AI in HR and try to debunk them.
Truth: The goal of AI research has generally been to mimic human intelligence in all aspects. In reality, this is not what the world needs. Industries need machines to support humans in making faster decisions and deliver better value.
Some people use AI, DL and ML interchangeably. Understanding the nuanced differences will empower you to ask the right questions and seek the appropriate answers.
If we were to represent it visually, AI is a superset of which ML is a subset. Deep learning is a further subset of ML.
Apart from DL and ML, AI comprises much more. The goal of AI is to emulate the most significant functions of the human brain, which includes natural language processing, creativity, autonomous learning among other functions.
ML is a subset of AI that deals with detecting patterns from data The field generally uses maths and algorithms to recognise these patterns from a training data set. The design of this algorithm enables the program to make predictions and determinations without the programmer having to code an exact method in which the solution should be arrived at.
Finally, DL is a specific class of machine learning algorithms. It is a type of Neural Network Algorithm. An interesting fact is that the “Deep” in DL does not refer to a depth of understanding. It rather refers to a technical concept that there are more “layers” in the network that are used. With the increasing computational power in the last decade, DL has proved incredibly powerful in several problems that were previously considered unsolvable including image recognition and natural language processing. And this progress has been one of the prime drivers for the increased interest in AI. However, it’s important to note that while it’s extremely powerful, it is not the best solution in all cases. More on this later.
Myth 2: Today’s AI algorithms learn from any interaction you have with them.
Truth: Another myth that often comes up is that people equate AI algorithms with general Artificial Intelligence. In other words, since the system is “intelligent”, it should be able to understand this and this.
It is important to understand that, at latest as of today, an AI system is built to solve a particular problem. Engineers use historical data to train or create the model and solve a specific problem. When the system is to be used for solving another problem, the engineers have to go back to the drawing board and do additional work to make the system capable of solving another problem.
Moreover, most of the data that goes into the system has a lot of noise which needs cleaning. Data scientists spend 80% of their time cleaning this data.
In summary, there is typically a lot of effort that goes into a system being able to learn from different interactions of the user.
Myth 3: The build of neural networks is exactly like the human brain
Truth: Here is one of the most common myths that has given base to several conjectures and theories about how AI-powered HR systems can be virtual recruiters. It has led to warped expectations and fears in the community of recruiters.
In general, computer scientists like to take their inspirations from the human brain. After all, it is the most powerful network comprising of billions of neurons and synaptic interconnections.
Scientists use the human brain as an ideal model to make efficient computers. For instance, they have taken the concepts of long term and short-term memory from the brain to build faster and better machines.
The basic structure of the neural network is the same as that of the human brain. However, the similarity ends there. The human mind and neural activity are far more complex to be emulated. Scientists know that the neural networks we use today have much fewer connections than an average human brain.
Myth 4: You need a large amount of data for AI
Truth: A common question that precedes the effectiveness of an AI application is this – Does it use a large enough data set to learn? It is a general perception that more is better.
While it is true that you need some data to enable machine learning, you don’t need excessive data sets. Your problem statement and the solution will define the amount of data that you need. Moreover, you can be creative and evade the need for a large data set. For instance, impress.ai can learn a data set that has as few as 10-20 points.
Transfer learning is a concept that enables the system to learn from one domain and use that information in another one. When used in designing an AI application, it results in two main outputs. Firstly, you don’t have to start from zero. Secondly, you don’t have to worry if there is a limitation on the data set.
Similarly, there are other tricks like simulations and inference systems that allow the systems to enhance their knowledge with limited data.
Myth 5: AI is a black box that automatically gives insights
Truth: Hollywood movies are partly to blame for the prevalent fear of intelligent machines taking on the human population. The creators of the applications are unable to understand what’s going on inside the “brains” of these machines. Computer science terms such programs, where we don’t know what’s happening inside, as the black box. It creates an environment of mistrust.
The truth is that even in traditional black box programs, there are still ways in which the working of the system can be understood. . Moreover, all machine learning algorithms are not black-box systems. Some algorithms reveal clearly why a particular conclusion was reached.
Myth 6: “State-of-the-art” AI is all about Deep Learning
Truth: DL is a particular type of AI algorithm and people have come to believe that it is the best solution to their problem. However, it is your problem that defines the best application.
While it is true that DL gives outstanding results, but it may not be the best option. Deep neural networks may be slow and less efficient for you. In certain situations, a deep learning model may not work at all. The best solution is to leave it to the experts to decide the most effective model for your problem.
There is also a common understanding that AI systems are useful only when they use deep learning algorithms. However, did you know that the most revolutionary innovations by giants such as Google, Amazon, Facebook etc. do not use DL? Their power comes from the way they have deployed their algorithms.
Myth 7: AI will take over your jobs
Truth: People have always taken technology with a pinch of salt for fear of losing jobs. In reality, technology has allowed humans to automate manual and human-intensive tasks. By doing so, it has empowered us to do more meaningful jobs and set better goals for ourselves.
A better approach to look at AI is to understand how it can enhance your output and productivity. When used in HR, AI allows you to work with tools that are better than ATS and spreadsheets. It helps you to be more productive and enables you to focus on other strategic aspects of your job.
Impress.ai – AI-powered chatbots for recruiters
Impress.ai is a platform that uses AI to transform your hiring process. By taking over the manual tasks, it allows you to focus on higher-value tasks. The conversational bots can deliver multiple benefits, all in a single platform – engage, screen, evaluate and shortlist candidates.
The bot aims to minimise human effort and takes only one day for deployment. The platform takes as less as 10-20 ratings to learn and aligns quickly with your organisational objectives. Moreover, it can easily integrate with other third-party platforms to offer a seamless experience to the users.
It is a platform that empowers your organisation to hire qualified candidates at a much faster rate. On an individual level, it allows you to set better targets for yourself and supports you to achieve them. Request a demo to learn more about our artificial intelligence recruitment software.
For any organisation, recruitment is not just about onboarding the right talent. It is also about hiring employees who fit into the organisational culture. Only then can you expect the employees to contribute more meaningfully and expect a long-term association with them.
One way to achieve this is by following fair hiring practices. As you follow a code of ethics and the labor laws, you will not only hire more responsibly. You will also build an ecosystem that has trust and faith as its foundation.
Moreover, fair hiring decisions can help in building a solid reputation. When the talent knows that your organisation hires for merit, they will be keener to pursue jobs with you. Not to forget, you will save your organisation from an undesirable reputation.
Why does fair hiring matter?
To answer this question, let’s look at a few facts.
Discrimination comes in the way of qualified candidates from getting a job they deserve. It not only leaves a sour taste but also discourages them from applying in the future. In the current scenario of talent scarcity, organisations want to avoid it at all costs.
Fair hiring practices can also protect your organisations from expensive lawsuits. Above all, organisations should follow fair hiring because it is the right thing to do. It can give a boost to the employer brand like nothing else.
How can you and your team of recruiters ensure fair hiring in your organisation?
Here’s the thing about hiring discrimination. Even if you have the best intention to hire for merit, you may not know that you are biased. One way is to learn to identify these blind areas. However, you can also adopt a few practices to ensure fair hiring.
Let’s look at 5 steps to ensure fair hiring in detail.
1. Standardise interview process
You cannot be present in every interview to ensure that it is fair to the candidates. There could be multiple recruiters and hiring managers that make it challenging. A better way is to level the playing field.
One way to do this is by asking the same set of questions to every candidate who applies to a role. More often than not, the interview discussions are unstructured. The interviewers decide the course of the conversation during the interview. They may be hard on a few candidates and soft on the others.
When you give them a framework with the same set of questions, there is no way but to give everyone an equal chance. With the responses, the hiring panel can decide who is a more deserving candidate.
2. Blind / Anonymous hiring
The governments of France and the Netherlands conducted studies to understand the impact of anonymous hiring. They found that it benefits women and minorities. It happens because of the unconscious bias of recruiters and hiring managers. They tend to make opinions and beliefs based on their experiences and societal perceptions.
They tend to favour candidates with similar characteristics as themselves. On the other hand, they tend to reject who do not fit into their idea of the right candidate.
Blind hiring enables you to hire without these prejudices as all the demographic details get hidden. In the absence of such information, you can make decisions based on the qualification of the candidate.
Impress offers an AI-powered tool that enables anonymous hiring. It blinds all the biasing information from the resumes and empowers the recruiters to follow a fair hiring practice.
The platform evaluates candidates, ranks them and scores them for the benefit of the hiring team. You can look at the result and interview the most qualified candidates. Thus, you can ensure that you hire irrespective of the background, gender, ethnicity or race.
3. Value-based recruitment
Employees who do not align with the values of your organisation may lose their morale and productivity. As their motivation to work will get impacted, they will start looking for other job options.
To resolve this, you need to find better alignment. You need to evaluate the beliefs of the candidates vis-a-vis the values of your organisation.
Also known as value-based recruitment, it focuses more on the mission and values of the organisation. It starts by identifying these values that matter the most to your organisation.
The next step is to translate these values into behaviours. The interviewers can evaluate the candidates based on these responses. They need to ask questions to see a display of these values during the interview.
4. Skills and competency assessments
More often than not, interviewers make hiring decisions on their gut feeling. As this happens, the quality of talent gets compromised. Moreover, it blocks fair hiring practices in your organisation.
A better way to ensure that all the candidates get a fair chance is by evaluating their skills and competencies. You can start by identifying a list of abilities that will make an employee successful in a role.
The next step is to design a framework of psychometric evaluations, assessments and other tests to hire the best candidate.
As you do this, you may feel you are burdening your team with the manual task of administering these tests. You can simplify this by integrating all the evaluations on one common platform to make the process more productive. As you do this, your users will also enjoy a more seamless process.
Impress offers an AI-driven tool that integrates with all major third-party assessment platforms to enhance the hiring output and experience.
5. Diverse hiring panels
In these rapidly-changing times, you cannot only hire candidates for the skills they possess today. Instead, you need to hire for potential. It will ensure that they are flexible and can take on challenging roles in the future.
You can achieve it by establishing diverse hiring panels. It means forming interview panels from across the board. You can include people from other teams, women and other minorities. With such boards, you can give all the candidates a fair chance. You will see an influx of diverse employees who find support from a diverse panel.
Moreover, when a diverse team makes a decision, you can rest assured that gut feel had no play in the hiring process.
When you follow fair hiring practices, you will be hitting not two but multiple birds with one stone. It will strengthen your employer branding and build a diverse workforce. Above all, such practices will ensure long-term organisational success.
With a tight labour market, the balance of power has shifted from organisations to talented candidates. Recruiters will agree that it is not tough to discover the right talent. The real challenge is in drawing the interest and time from these applicants. In the current scenario, candidate engagement is that magic word which can turn things around.
What is candidate engagement?
If there is one thing that all recruiters will agree upon, it is that recruitment depends a lot on relationships. As the connection between a candidate and the recruiter strengthens, it becomes easier to hire and onboard.
Candidate engagement is the process through which recruiters can initiate and nurture these relationships. It is what prevents promising candidates from dropping out of the hiring process.
Candidate engagement is not about sending a one-off text message to the applicant. It is about being consistent in your interaction with the candidates.
Is candidate engagement the same as candidate experience?
Although it may seem similar, engagement is a small part of the experience. Candidate engagement is how you interact with the applicants. On the other hand, the experience is how they feel about the hiring process as a whole.
The traditional way of sourcing is not always the best way to tap this talent pool. If the recruiters have to source from square one, it slows them down.
Besides, engagement drives a good candidate experience. 22% of the candidates say they will inform their circle if the hiring process wasn’t satisfactory. It is the last thing that organisations want – undesirable publicity.
A more successful method is when recruiters identify the right talent and initiate an engagement process. As they build a one-on-one connection with these candidates, they develop a talent pipeline. It becomes easier to hire them when the time comes.
Apart from this, it sets apart the organisation as an employer that invests deeply in finding the right talent. It helps the organisation in creating a proactive recruitment model instead of a reactive one. As it does so, it can hire on time and win competitive advantage.
What is the best strategy for successful candidate engagement?
A successful candidate strategy is the one that fosters continuous interaction with the candidates. It doesn’t imply calling the candidates daily. Instead, it means using a variety of ways to engage with the talent at all the right times.
Recruiters are an essential part of this strategy. They can contribute by becoming the gate-keepers of the plan and streamlining it. They can also add value by dividing the candidates into different buckets. It helps in creating more targeted and value-adding touch-points.
Technology is the next resource that organisations can leverage. It allows them to create workflows and automate emails and texts. Moreover, AI-powered tools can help organisations in understanding candidate behaviours. It can also help in pulling new and passive candidates.
Finally, organisations need to design a process with the end goal in mind. For instance, the purpose could be to engage the qualified candidates who have applied in the past. Organisations can send them newsletters or thought leadership blogs to stay in touch. Recruiters can automate and send emails for new job openings. Such emails will allow them the chance to apply again. It can significantly reduce the sourcing effort and accelerate hiring.
What are the best practices for candidate engagement?
Invest in your careers website
For most candidates, your careers page is the first touch-point. In fact, 53% of them will first visit the page before they apply. It is where they go to seek information and know more about the company. There are multiple ways to leverage it to excite the applicants for a possible career with you.
If you haven’t worked on it for a long time, it may time to revamp it. Use videos to show the company culture and the working environment. If possible, throw light on some exciting projects that are happening currently.
You can also have a feature on your current employees. The first step would be to interview your employees and ask the best part about working with your organisation. You can also shoot a day in office in their lives. As you do it, you give a preview to the candidates about how life will look like, in your company.
Use social media
In today’s digital world, if you are not on social media, you could be losing a huge opportunity. These channels can become a great platform to build your brand and engage talented candidates.
The talent pool in the market consists of both active as well as passive candidates. You can publish the current job openings to attract the applicants looking for a job. However, you will need to do more to engage with passive candidates.
Your content strategy should be around showcasing your organisation as an ideal place to work. You can share thought leadership blogs or insightful videos to engage with this section of candidates.
AI is that reliable friend that can engage potential employees in your absence. Not only can it provide all the right information, but it can also evaluate them for the current openings.
Firstly, an AI-powered chatbot on the careers page can engage the visitors. After understanding if the visitor is a potential candidate, it can show the current job openings as per their interest.
Secondly, the chatbot can mimic human conversations and answer their queries. It can handle a variety of questions related to culture, perks and benefits, job description etc.
If the candidates are interested in applying to a job, AI-powered chatbot can help them in completing their application. It can also tell them if they have missed any piece of information.
The chatbot offered by Impress does all this and more. It can conduct the first round of the interview and give them scores. The recruiters can look at the results and take it ahead from there.
Share status updates
Candidates find it disappointing when they apply for a job position and don’t hear from the organisation. They would like to know if the organisation received their application and considered it for the job position.
Companies can tackle this easily by automating status updates. By sending an automated email and text after the candidate applies, organisations can solve a significant part of the problem.
As the process advances, organisations can send similar updates to keep the engagement high. If the candidate is unable to make it to the next round, it will do more good to send communication about it. You don’t have to mention the reason or detailed feedback. It will suffice to say that the organisation won’t be able to move ahead with the application. However, they are welcome to apply again in the future.
The most critical point here to personalise these emails. You can use AI for this purpose. The tool offered by Impress allows the recruiters to send such status emails.
Communicate a clear hiring timeline
Changing a job and picking an organisation is a crucial decision for the candidates. When they are in the market, they are good chances that they are interviewing at other places.
They will appreciate it if you can share a hiring timeline with them. Tell the candidates if they should expect any personality or aptitude tests. Also, inform them about the number of interview rounds that are likely to happen. It is easy to send out this email when they reach a significant stage in your recruitment process.
As they will remain informed, they won’t feel lost during the interview process.
Automated interview scheduling
When the recruiters have to call and schedule the interviews, the process becomes ineffective. Firstly, it becomes an operational task with many chances of error. Secondly, rescheduling takes a lot of effort.
The tool offered by Impress allows the candidates to schedule their interviews as per their convenience. They can see the available interview slots and select a suitable time. The tool integrates with the calendar of the recruiters and hiring managers for a streamlined process.
When the control is with the candidates, they will be better engaged.
One to one conversation
When the candidates reach an advanced level in the interview process, it is time for more personal conversations. It is when recruiters need to step in and engage the candidates with one to one emails, texts and phone calls.
In some organisations, it may require making a tactical or mindset change. However, personalised communication can make a whole lot of difference. As the interaction becomes frequent, the candidates will know that the organisation is keen on hiring them.
Moreover, it gives recruiters a chance to understand if they are interviewing elsewhere. It will allow them to move quickly and make an offer at the right time.
In today’s time of talent war, organisations need to put themselves out there. Candidate engagement is the key to ensuring that candidates choose you above the others.
In the last couple of years, recruiters have gained a prominent position at organisations. A lack of qualified candidates in the market and the need to hire better talent has propelled them to this stature. Everyone, from the CHROs to the hiring managers, want recruiters to work at lightning speed. However, several low-value tasks slow them down. These are the operational and repetitive tasks that are essential to the hiring process. In this digital age, it is a necessity to automate low-value tasks like these so that recruiters can contribute more to their organisations.
When these duties are taken care of, they can build better relationships with the hiring managers. With a deeper understanding of the roles and organisational strategies, they can deliver better results. With a better focus on high-value tasks, recruiters will be more engaged. They will be happier doing what they love the most.
Automating low-value tasks can enhance the efficiency of recruitment for organisational success. Apart from boosting the speed, automation allows the organisations to reap the benefits of the real value of recruiters. They are the experts in their fields who know where the talent resides. They know how to engage passive candidates and get them interested in job openings. They also know the tricks of converting an offer.
In short, they have a magic touch that can elevate the hiring of any organisation. With the automation of low-value tasks, they get more bandwidth to focus on what really matters.
Which automation tools and solutions can you use for recruitment?
Here is a list of essential but low-value tasks that slow down the hiring process. Organisations can automate them to enhance their talent quotient.
Growing the candidate pool
The hiring efficiency increases by manifold when there is a large and qualified candidate pool. It allows the recruiters and hiring managers to hire from the best and also understand the market. Moreover, it also allows them to create a pipeline if the first offer gets rejected or for future job openings.
As crucial as it is to expand the candidate pool, it is also essential to keep it relevant. Incorrect sourcing results in unfruitful interviews. Apart from wasting everyone’s time, it can also leave a sour taste with the candidate. They may not be keen on exploring future positions with you.
A job discovery bot is the latest and the most efficient source for growing the candidate pool. It engages the visitors who land on the organisation’s website to check out some information. They may not be necessarily looking for jobs. The bot has a conversation with them and evaluates if they are possible applicants and suggests relevant job openings based on their profile. This is an upcoming feature from Impress. You can schedule a call with us to learn more about this.
Technology has made it easier and less expensive for job applicants to apply. As a result, candidates often send their resumes even when their profiles do not match the roles.
Most recruiters manually go through these resumes and maintain the records in their excel sheets. They call up the candidates to understand their interests before calling them for the interview. Although a necessary part of the interview process, these steps slow them down.
AI-powered screening tools make shortlisting a whole lot easier for the recruiters. These tools can identify the most suitable candidates from a pool and also rank them.
Recruitment chatbots can particularly add more value. Their power lies in the fact that they can interview candidates. Based on deep learning algorithms, they can mimic human conversations. They can resolve candidate queries and also assess their qualification for the open roles. These chatbots can also ask the candidates to provide any missing information and complete their application.
The most significant advantage is that these tools can simultaneously engage tens of candidates. As they do so, the screening time gets reduced considerably.
The recruiters can look at the final results and directly move to the interview stage. Impress brings a screening tool that delivers all these benefits and many more.
Co-ordinating the interviews between hiring managers and candidates can be a tiresome process. It is an unproductive task that prevents the recruiters from giving time to more value-adding duties.
One can imagine the time and effort it can take during high-volume recruitment scenarios. Last-minute rescheduling and interview dropouts further add to unproductive hours. Organisations can automate low-value tasks like this to optimise their recruitment process.
AI-powered tool by Impress allows hassle-free interview scheduling. It enables the qualified candidates to select the interview slots as per their convenience. As they do so, it reflects in the recruiters’ calendars, and they can take it forward from there.
Sharing status updates
If you ask the applicants, most of them will have a bone to pick with the recruiters. They will tell you how they don’t get to know about their application status.
Sharing status updates are necessary to keep the candidates engaged. It starts from the time when they apply for a job opening. An acknowledgement mail that the organisation has received their application can go a long way in keeping them interested.
Some applicants also complain they never hear from the company after appearing for an interview. They would prefer to know if the applications are going to be taken forward to the next stage or not. LinkedIn found in a survey that 94% of candidates would like to know their interview feedback. It gives them better control over their professional decisions. As they are in the market, they could be interviewing at other companies.
Recruiters do not have the bandwidth to send such updates to the applicants. Even if they want to follow a process, it may sometimes fall through the cracks. Automated systems like the Impress platform can free them from such low-value tasks while also strengthening the hiring process.
Negotiating offers and convincing the candidates is perhaps one of the toughest jobs of recruiters. Sometimes, it also takes a bit of to-and-fro to get the offer accepted. When it is not automated, recruiters have to design the salary structures in excel sheets.
It is also a stage when the documents keep piling at the recruiters’ ends. From salary slips, previous offer letters and medical tests etc. the files can become thick. Not to mention, due to the confidentiality of these documents, recruiters have to be extra careful with them.
Also, manual signing off of the letters by the designated authorities slow down the process.
When organisations automate low-value tasks through offer management, they enhance their hiring processes by manifold. It allows the recruiters to key in a few details to generate salary structures and offer letters. The workflow instantly transfers the offer to the right person’s inbox for approvals.
The candidates can share their classified documents on a safe system where they can also view their digitally-signed letters.
Integrating the new employees in the system is the final part of the hiring process. However, it is also a crucial time. Their onboarding experience can make or break their relationship with the organisation. With a streamlined onboarding, the new employees can access the right tools and information for immediate productivity.
When onboarding is not automated, recruiters have to co-ordinate manually with other teams. Apart from being a time-consuming activity, it becomes prone to human-errors. The result is an inconsistent process.
Automated onboarding relieves the recruiters of several operational tasks. Moreover, it ensures a consistent experience for all the employees. When they receive a welcome where everything is right, the organisation can experience better retention.
Organisations can achieve higher efficiency and reduced costs when they automate low-value tasks. As the hiring process gets more streamlined, the recruiters can focus on more productive duties. Apart from contributing better to their organisations, they can also find more meaning in their jobs.
Recruitment is the foundation for organizational success. With the right talent, companies can achieve their goals and much more. It is for this reason that hiring talented employees is a top priority for the CEOs. While businesses have a high dependency on recruitment functions, the methods do not always support better speed and efficiency. Manual and operational tasks often slow down the recruiters. By adopting lean recruitment, recruiters can streamline their processes and ensure higher productivity.
What is lean recruitment?
The origin of lean recruitment lies in lean manufacturing processes. Large production units require accurate inventory management to manage seasonal demands. They need to have just enough to avoid excesses and reduce expenses.
Apart from cutting costs, they have a high focus on reducing waste. In their context, waste refers to that part of the process that reduces efficiency.
Lean recruitment uses similar principles to deliver better results with fewer resources. It is a method of continuous improvement where the recruiters implement changes to achieve higher efficiency. It is proactive recruitment, and the recruiters work to build a talent pipeline to fulfil future demands.
Most recruitment departments adopt a reactive strategy. They act after they receive the openings from the hiring managers. The process of sourcing, shortlisting and interviewing can take months. With lean recruitment, talent is readily available to execute new business strategies.
What is the foundation of lean?
Toyota developed a lean production system that focuses on minimising waste while maximising productivity. Many other organisations have implemented and benefitted from their principles.
In essence, it means automating the low-value tasks so that the employees can focus on more productive and strategic duties. When applied in recruitment, it allows the recruiters to contribute to high-value jobs. It could mean more conversations with the hiring managers, building a better pipeline of passive candidates or a deeper involvement in capacity-planning.
What is the need for lean recruitment?
Hiring the right talent at the right time is not just necessary for business operations. It is also vital to maintain the right ecosystem where the employees are not overworked. When the resources are less, the same number of employees have to deliver more. Apart from this, there is also an opportunity cost in terms of lost work.
However, the current recruitment system fails to hire qualified talent timely. The process typically involves the hiring managers stating the requirements to the recruiters. Then begins, the workflow, which consists of taking approvals, and inviting applications. The time taken for screening, interviewing, and serving notice period can be a long one. It can take a few months to get the new hire on board.
A lean recruitment process can forecast the demands and facilitates a closer partnership between HR and the businesses. It is faster and is more efficient in hiring the right talent. As the new employees join timely, the businesses are also more productive and profitable.
What are the best practices to make your recruitment process lean?
It may not be possible to remove the inconsistencies in your recruitment process right away. It may take a few iterations to achieve the optimum level of lean. However, you can start by automating the process wherever you can.
As the workload of your recruiters will reduce, they will have more bandwidth to focus on high-value tasks.
Here is how you can start. When you complete one iteration, you can begin the process again to identify waste and work towards reducing it.
Know the waste
The first step is to evaluate the hiring process critically and identify waste. In this context, it could be operational or manual tasks. They take up a significant chunk of recruiters’ time. The recruiting process at any organisation typically has the following activities that slow down the process.
• Manual sourcing of candidates or not using the right sourcing ways. For instance, the channels for volume recruitment are different than niche hiring.
• In the absence of a better method, manual screening can not only slow down the hiring process but also leads to bias and other inconsistencies.
• It takes a lot of to and fro to schedule the interviews if recruiters have to call and set them up.
• Most organisations that have still not automated the dashboards require the recruiters to fill up trackers. This process is not only tedious but also takes a lot of valuable work hours.
• Lastly, manual job offer management is another area that can be automated to make the hiring lean.
Automate to reduce the waste
With automation, organisations can optimise hiring and reduce the workload of their recruiters. When the recruiters have more time to contribute to the strategic aspects of their job, they will feel more engaged and valued.
AI-powered tools take automation a step further and make the process more efficient and productive. For instance, screening software based on AI can identify the most qualified candidates from a large talent pool. Instead of going through every resume manually, the recruiters can look at the final results to take the process further. Since it uses algorithms and a deep-learning model, the tool can also enhance the quality-of-hire.
Impress brings screening software that adds more value to the recruitment process. Apart from identifying talent in a much shorter time, it also engages the candidates from the very beginning. By sharing regular status updates, it ensures that the applicants know whats going on. The chatbot also conducts the first round of discussion with the applicants. As a result, the recruiters can be sure that their interest is real and genuine.
Similarly, job board integration, automating interview scheduling and offer management can result in lean recruitment.
Encourage the recruiters to add more value
One of the central tenets of lean methodology is respect for people. In traditional recruitment, recruiters have an excessive workload of operational tasks. When the low-value tasks are automated, recruiters can add more meaning to their roles. For instance, they can work on data to identify the best sourcing channels or candidate demographics.
As the recruiters will be able to do what they love, they will be happier. The results will show in their output as they will come up with innovative solutions for better hiring.
A shift from the traditional model of recruitment will work only when the recruitment function can forecast talent needs. Recruiters can achieve this in multiple ways.
Firstly, the recruiters need to work closely with the businesses to understand their strategies for growth. If the company is eyeing a larger market share or developing a new product, it will need more resources. If there is a slowdown expected in the coming months, the recruiters can put a brake on actively sourcing candidates.
Secondly, there are a few quarters in which organisations experience higher attrition rates. Typically, these are the months that follow annual promotions and pay-hikes. The recruitment team can analyse the past data to identify such periods and ramp up their work in advance. It will ensure the continuity of work without any loss due to attriting employees.
Finally, organisations can learn more about the engagement of employees to understand their levels of engagement. Disengaged employees are more likely to leave. With the help of advanced tools, this crucial information will be useful in workforce planning.
Recruiters can use professional-networking sites and social media to identify these talented resources. The next step is to start conversations with them. They may not be responsive in the beginning but may warm up after repeated attempts.
There are several ways in which the recruiters can build a better relationship with them. The hiring managers can subsequently call them for discussions as they deem fit. The idea is to have a pipeline ready for the time when the organisation wants to hire. Here are the best tips for hiring passive candidates.
Monitor recruitment metrics
By analysing KPIs, the recruiters can understand the area that needs more focus. For instance, the recruiters could be using ineffective sourcing channels. Or, the onboarding experience could need improvements. It is an essential step for building a lasting relationship with the employees.
With frequent monitoring and reviewing of data, it can result in better processes. As they become more refined, the outcome is lean recruitment.
Lean recruitment is a continuous process of improvement. It begins by reviewing the internal processes critically. It entails being proactive for fulfilling future demand. Building a highly-efficient hiring system involves automation to eliminate waste. As it happens gradually, the recruiters feel empowered to add to the organisation’s growth.