How to Design the Selection Process for a Graduate Program

Finding a candidate for a job isn’t as cut out as it may initially seem. You don’t just look up and down the list of candidates and say, “Okay, this person will do just fine.” Instead, you have to go through numerous organized steps to get to the final stage of the employee selection process.

When we address graduate programs, it is important to note that they are the mainstay of developing future leaders for the company. A good selection process is key in finding talent and it forms the backbone for effective performance management. We decided to dwell further into the topic and provide a quick step-by-step guide to follow for your recruitment and selection process so you can get that new star candidate on your team. 

Here are six steps in the selection process for hiring employees when selecting a graduate program and how to best go through each:

1. Brand your program

A candidate applying for your graduate program is definitely applying for other programs as well. This is why it becomes important to help them self-select and understand why your program is good for them. Here are some ways to achieve that:

  • Brand your company as a top employer- Sure, employer branding is not something that happens overnight. You might find it challenging to create an iconic business brand that outshines your competitors, but it is nonetheless important for various reasons. It can be the key to reducing recruitment costs, widening your talent pool, and retaining top talent.
  • Describe the career prospects in your industry and company- Converting leads into candidates by sending them regular email newsletters and content about your company’s new achievements, application processes, vibrant culture. Give them the opportunity to connect with your employees via email, social, or live chat.
  • Share what is needed to succeed in the program, talk about growth parts, and highlight the culture of your company 

2. Make information capture easy

  • Make it easy for candidates to apply for the program. Granted that there’s a lot of information needed, but a long tedious form will only drive candidates out of the process. And no process works if it is too difficult to follow. Make sure your application form is super helpful. If it’s not possible with your ATS, implement processes that can make your process more user-friendly and can sync in with your ATS. Remember that candidates are assessing your company as much as you are assessing them. At impress.ai, we use conversational technology to collect information without making it difficult. It also synchronizes it back to your ATS.

3. Assess accurately and progress fast

Once you’ve screened candidates, you want to look at the surviving candidates and further assess their ability to do the job you’re looking to fill. Assessments form an important part of a strong selection process. The most commonly used tests for graduate programs are personality and cognitive tests. Personality questionnaires assess different personality traits, such as motivation, working style, while Cognitive tests check your reasoning, numeracy, and literacy skills. This is done because most candidates don’t come with relevant experience and knowledge so it isn’t very useful to assess. While conducting these assessments it is also important to explain to candidates why these tests are important, Make sure that they are easy to complete on the mobile and allow for candidates to progress accordingly if they meet particular criteria.

4. Be prepared for the interview

Unstructured interviews make them inaccurate and inefficient. A good interview will help you make better hiring decisions, as you will objectively evaluate and compare candidates’ potential. But there’s a lot more to that- you need to prepare yourself and the entire hiring team to make sure you ask all the right questions. More specifically, you should:

  • Make sure you have a list of questions prepared and are aware of the competencies that you’re looking for.
  • Use behavioral interview techniques and STAR framework
  • Evaluate alignment to company values, also through behavioral or situational judgment questions.

5. Run an effective assessment center

A business cannot succeed without people. It needs the right people who are the right fit for the organization. For the same reason, there is a need to invest in the recruitment process. A business needs an assessment center that is run properly and effectively to select the best candidates for the job. An assessment center refers to the process in which a group of people who are being considered for a position or a job is given a series of tests or interviews. For this, it is essential that you evaluate the candidate for certain key skills and abilities. Some of these are problem-solving skills, the ability to work with others in the team, perform under pressure, and quality of work. 

The two common ways to evaluate candidates include:

  1. Case studies: You’re likely to come across a case study exercise at an assessment center. These can be undertaken in groups but, if the event is virtual, an individual version is more likely. Qualities like initiative, leadership qualities, and analytical and problem-solving abilities are tracked via these exercises.
  2. Group discussions: This is a classic assessment center exercise. If your assessment center is virtual as a result of the pandemic, you may still undertake a group exercise through the platform used. However, recruiters might decide to assess similar skills in another way – such as through questions at interviews. Through these discussions, employers look for qualities such as teamwork, problem-solving ability, and a logical, analytical approach to the task. 

6. Maximize conversion with pre-boarding

The pre-boarding process refers to the process of orienting the candidates with the company culture and the people during the time between acceptance of the offer and actual joining.  This comes in handy because even though the candidate has accepted the offer with the company, they are not guaranteed to join. Many candidates are accepted to multiple programs. A good pre-boarding will improve the conversion. Some ideas for the same include:

  1. Announcing your new hire to your existing staff and introducing your new hire to the team with a friendly email or even an invite to a lunch or a team meeting
  2. Have a regular check-in with candidates who have accepted the offer.
  3. Company culture videos are also a trending topic for a great pre-boarding plan. 

For more information on how to design a good selection process for a graduate program, click here to watch a video with our CEO, Sudhanshu Ahuja, give you insights on the same.

Jobs of the future: Top 5 skills that won’t be replaced by AI

On the bench

The rise of artificial intelligence (AI) has triggered a series of questions about the future of work. The most common one being will technology replace our jobs? And if so, to what extent?

My answer is twofold:

First, we need to understand what AI is and the capabilities of this technology. Second, we should be aware of the skills that bots are unable to excel at, so we can develop professionally in these areas.

Let’s start by understanding what AI means

AI is intelligence demonstrated by machines, in contrast to the natural intelligence displayed by humans and other animals. As a concept, AI refers to a machine being able to think for itself and subsequently make decisions based on the data that it has been trained with.

What are the current capabilities of AI?

AI is best used when it comes to processing high volumes of data, completing mundane tasks, and answering basic level questions in areas like customers service or recruitment. Because of detailed algorithms, AI systems are now able to perform computing tasks quickly and efficiently, helping us make strides in research and development.

Some of the most notable real-world applications of AI include IBM’s Watson, which is being used to power research across a range of fields, and Microsoft’s Azure Machine Learning, which has made headlines globally. AI smart assistants have also become commonly used and welcomed in people’s homes, like Siri, Cortana, and Alexa.

These are the job skills of the future that bots can’t master:

1. Creativity

Having an imagination and thinking outside the box means that you can come up with ideas that don’t already exist. While AI machines can create art, music, and write, they do so by recognising patterns and analysing data as opposed to producing something new. Coming up with the initial seeds for a concept that hasn’t previously existed is uniquely human.

Even if a person doesn’t identify as being an inventor, a musician, or an author, having the ability to think in abstract terms will help solve problems, regardless of their job. For example, if a person works in recruitment, and their goal is to attract candidates to the company job page, they’ll need to think outside the box to come up with new ways to attract applicants. Then, they can experiment with various methods such as social media and content to find the optimal way to source applicants. By contract, if a machine were in charge of sourcing candidates, it would only utilise channels which it has previously “learned” based on the data used to create its algorithm.

2. Empathy

Another aspect that makes us human is the ability to empathize with others. This is especially useful in service related fields or areas dealing with people. For example, impress.ai, an AI recruitment software for recruiters, can perform the initial stages of qualifying candidates by conducting competency based interviews at scale. After that, to complete the hiring process, a human would need to be involved to physically meet candidates and make the final decision. No matter how developed AI chatbots become, they will not have the innate ability to connect with and understand people on an emotional level to make final decisions.

Simply put, bots cannot “see” themselves in another person’s shoes, which is a skill required for tasks like interpreting a person’s feelings, working well in group settings, and effectively communicating ideas. Empathy is just one of many interpersonal skills which are necessary for positions in management as well as implementing projects across organisations. Can you imagine a bot solving a conflict between employees? Or artificial intelligence attempting to calm an employee during a departmental layoff? Didn’t think so.

3. Planning

If you’ve ever played chess online against a computer, you’ll know that it’s as competent and competitive as playing against a real person. Strategic games like these tend to be bound by rules and outcomes based on logic. They’re predictable, for example, “if this, then that” and therefore relatively easy for a computer to “learn.”

However, when it comes to real-world scenarios, the future is not as predictable. Many jobs require navigating through uncertain outcomes, shifting priorities, and filling information gaps. For example, project managers have to balance various factors, consider timelines, and weigh priorities when planning assignments across teams to meet one common goal.

4. Physical Ability

In the same way that people can appreciate the creativity and unique talents of a cartoonist or a script writer, they can also appreciate the level of skill required when a human being is able to hit a home run, come first in a race, or score the winning touchdown.

For centuries, humans have come together to cheer on their favourite team and have been inspired by the dedication of athletes. Playing (or teaching) a sport is just one example of a career that requires a unique skillset which can’t be replaced by a machine.

5. Judgment

Imagine if a bot could replace a lawyer in legal matters. In ambiguous situations, it would be unsettling to allow AI to call the final shots. In matters related to ethics, things are not always black and white. In other words, the concept of “should” versus “should not” doesn’t exist for a bot.

Despite scenarios where facts may be supported by the law, many conflicts involve a degree of emotion and irrationality. For example, either side of a legal case may not proceed rationally, or may have hidden motives. Because of this, much of a paralegals’ time and effort involves searching for and gathering data, which is a repetitive task where a bot would excel. However, the position of a lawyer or a judge, which both involve a higher level of thinking, cannot be replaced by a bot.

Key takeaway: Regardless of where your career takes you, it’s important to understand the skills where bots can’t replace humans, and to take steps to upskill yourself in at least one of the areas involving creativity, empathy, planning, physical ability, or judgement.

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About impress.ai:

impress.ai is an AI chatbot software for recruiters. Our conversational bots autonomously interview, engage, and qualify candidates 24/7.

Our clients have experienced:

– Upto 81% reduction in the time to qualify candidates 
– Upto 30% reduction in the cost of hire
– 5X increase in reach

Ready to see our our platform in action? Email contact@impress.ai for a free product demo!

To people who are skeptical, I would definitely recommend to try impress.ai’s platform. I really like how responsive the team is, how user friendly the product is, and it’s quite easy to get the hang of.” Nisa Rahman, The Creative Square Company

The Creative Square finds top talent using an AI virtual recruiter

To people who are skeptical, I would definitely recommend to try impress.ai’s platform. I really like how responsive the team is, how user friendly the product is, and it’s quite easy to get the hang of.” Nisa Rahman, The Creative Square Company

The Creative Square is an internal business incubator which tests the viability of business ideas in various areas. 

Reasons why The Creative Square loves impress.ai

>The platform is easy to understand and user-friendly

>Customer support is readily available and helpful

>Chatbot interviews reveal a different side of candidates compared to CVs _

Our team sat down with Nisa Rahman from The Creative Square (TCS) to learn more about the business and the impact an AI virtual recruiter has had on their hiring process.

“We are in the business of experimentation. At TCS, our mission is to build a team of energetic, passionate individuals to help us validate ideas in various areas,” Nisa explained.

To efficiently support business expansion and find the right candidates to build their team, TCS started using an AI virtual recruiter to automate the early stages of hiring and shortlisting.

“We found impress.ai just in time, as we started hiring for our team. The platform was recommended by our business owner. It sounded like something new, different, and exciting, so we were very open to trying it out. Now, we source all our candidates and then put them through the conversational bot, which is like the first interview round for them.”

The TCS team advertises open roles in different ways. Once they receive applications, they use an internal tool to review candidates. After an initial screening, candidates are invited to

complete an interview with the AI virtual recruiter, which engages and shortlists candidates. Then, the hiring team logs into the platform to review candidate scores, which are assigned based on how well a candidate responds to interview questions.

When asked about her favourite part of the platform, Nisa mentioned it was the candidate scoring feature because it adds a layer of candidate information that can’t be found on a CV. Through the interview bot experience, the hiring team can see candidate responses and scores, which helps to give a better idea about whether that candidate would really fit into the role.

Nisa explained the difference between recruiting with impress.ai versus the traditional method.

“I like how the platform has changed my perception. When I look at what the candidate says on the screen, it shows a different side to them that I wouldn’t have seen on their CV. A lot of candidates are also able to share better insights when typing out responses. Plus, if the interview is recorded, I can refer back to it later for reference before having the the face to face interview.”

The team at TCS expressed that they were happy to try impress.ai’s platform, and that they have had a positive experience overall.

“Our experience working with impress.ai has been very good. I’ve been in touch with my customer success manager, Prash, who is always easy to get in touch with, sorts out our issues quickly, and is very clear in his explanations. The co-founder, Sudh, has also helped quite a bit and took us through the platform.”

When asked what she would say to people who are considering to work with impress.ai, Nisa said, “To people who are skeptical, I would definitely recommend to try impress.ai’s platform, whether you want a demo or just to have a feel of the product itself. I really like how responsive and helpful the team is, how user friendly the product is, and it’s quite easy to get the hang of. The platform also eliminates bias.”

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Interested in taking your recruitment process to the next level with our AI chatbot software for recruiters?

Email contact@impress.ai to schedule your free demo today!

YourStory Start-up Dialogue

At YourStory Startup-up Dialogue

Startups are known for their speed, innovation, and taking risks, however they often find it challenging to scale. Enterprises, on the other hand, rely on their proven brand presence to scale but find it challenging to take risks. Working together, they can help each other reach positive outcomes. According to KPMG’s New Horizons study, 94% of startups would like to repeat a collaboration process with larger organizations. And based on Imaginatik’s The State of Startup/Corporate Collaboration study82% of corporates say interactions with startups are important.

In support of promoting collaboration between enterprises and startups, impress.ai, an AI chatbot software for recruiters, participated in YourStory Start-up Dialogue. Sudhanshu Ahuja, CEO at impress.ai, was invited to moderate the panel of speakers at this event, which was co-hosted by YourStory and Asia PR Werkz, on Wednesday, 24 October 2018.

Topics covered during this event:

  • What are corporate partnerships?
  • Mistakes made by startups when trying to get corporate partnerships
  • How to deal with mismatch in expectations
  • Transformative effects of the right partnerships for both sides
  • How to prove your credibility
  • How to negotiate from a lower bargaining power
  • Being ready for a partnership — both for the startup and for the corporate

Panelists:

Ryan Lou, Fintech and Innovation Group, OCBC

Anurag Avula, Co-Founder & CEO, Shopmatic

Vipin Kalra, CEO, BankBazaar,

David Fowler, Director, PwC Singapore’s Venture Hub

Moderator: Sudhanshu Ahuja, CEO, impress.ai

Key takeaways and highlights:

What are corporate partnerships?

Anurag differentiated corporate partnerships into two types: A startup getting an enterprise as a customer versus a startup and an enterprise teaming up to build a symbiotic partnership to use each others strengths for mutual benefit.

He shared an example from Shopmatic, which has achieved this by securing distribution partnerships for its ecommerce platform for SMEs from large enterprises like HDFC and Singtel. Anurag also emphasized that the right incentives need be set at the operational level to make such partnerships work.

Mistakes made by startups when trying to get corporate partnerships

Vipin shared that it is very important for a startup to position themselves correctly when seeking any kind of partnership with an enterprise. He advised startups to really study how the enterprise makes money or what their needs could be and position themselves in the right place based on the enterprise’s needs. He also mentioned that it is important to show the big picture to the enterprise and start from there. Unless the enterprise can see the bigger vision, they won’t be able to see it as worth their time.

Ryan from OCBC Bank shared that startups should look for non-market leaders to partner with. For example, OCBC Bank is looking to partner with startups in markets where they are not market leaders, in places such as South East Asian countries. He also shared that it’s not helpful to think of startups as the competition. Competition is from challengers like Alibaba, Tencent, PingAn, and Grab who are challenging the status quo of the bank. So through partnerships with startups, banks have a better chance of beating the challengers.

Proving credibility

David from PwC shared that it’s very important for a startup to come across as credible when working with corporates. When PwC takes a startup to one of their customers, they are risking their own reputation on the startup’s credibility. He also shared that the partnership can be initiated both by an enterprise need as well as by a startup approaching them for a use case that could be useful for one of PwC’s clients.

How to deal with mismatch in expectations

Both Vipin and David shared that since the culture on both sides is different, it’s useful to have a third party helping both sides bridge the communication gap.

Transformative effects of the right partnerships for both sides

Both sides can massively benefit from a similar partnership.

How to negotiate from a lower bargaining power

Ryan and Anurag mentioned that startups needs to show that they have the right people in the team and know what they are talking about. Smaller businesses also need to make sure they comply with enterprise standards.

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Interested to learn how your enterprise business can collaborate with an innovative startup to improve hiring processes? Email contact@impress.ai today!

About impress.ai

impress.ai is an AI chatbot software for recruiters. Our conversational bots conduct competency based structured interviews using techniques from Industrial Organizational Psychology, specifically situational judgement questions. The chatbots autonomously interview, engage, and shortlist candidates at scale, 24/7, and actively fight human bias by hiding biasing information from human reviewers.

If you’re looking for one centralised recruitment solution to manage your growing recruitment needs, impress.ai’s AI-powered conversational bots can help make your day easier.

Our clients have experienced: 
– Upto 81% reduction in the time to qualify candidates 
– See Upto 30% reduction in the cost of hire
– 5X increase in reach

impress.ai is a Singapore based company and we work with several government clients as well as enterprises like DBS Bank, Accenture, and Singtel.

ConneXions Singapore: Amazon Web Services & impress.ai

Impressing the audience at ConneXions Singapore

impress.ai, an AI chatbot software for recruiters, was invited to speak at ConneXions Singapore, an event hosted by Amazon Web Services on Thursday, 20 September.

Highlights of the event

The goal of this event was to share knowledge and best practices about the latest technology trends in cloud solutions. It was also an opportunity to engage with AWS team members, learn about APN programs, as well as the resources and tools that partners can leverage.

Topics covered during this event included:

  • A tale of 2 cloud journeys
  • Building our next generation of cloud architects
  • Technology partner showcase

Speaker

Prashanth Sundaram (Prash)

Prash is a corporate finance & operations analyst at impress.ai. He has an affinity for all things financial and ensures all aspects of finance at impress.ai are under control. Prash also provides a smooth journey for customers by supporting the operations team.

A big thank you to Amazon Web Services for hosting this event and giving our team the opportunity to present!

Interested in learning how AI can help your recruitment team experience:

– Upto 81% reduction in the time to qualify candidates 
– Upto 30% reduction in the cost of hire
– 5X increase in reach

impress.ai a well funded, Singaporean company and we work with 10 government agencies as well as enterprises like DBS Bank, Accenture, and Singtel. Email contact@impress.ai to learn how we can help you save time and improve efficiency. 

Capitalising on AI — A HR Game Change: By NTUC, DBS Bank, impress.ai, and HCLI

NTUC invited impress.ai to present at Capitalising on AI — A HR Game Change.

impress.ai, an AI chatbot software for recruiters, was invited to speak at NTUC’s Progressive Practices Series: Capitalising on AI — A HR Game Change on Thursday 20th September, 2018.

Highlights of the event

The goal of this event was to educate HR professionals about:

  • How to navigate the future of HR
  • The benefits of implementing AI powered chatbots in recruitment processes
  • The opportunities AI & machine learning bring across talent acquisition

Speakers

James LooExecutive Director & Head, Talent Acquisition GroupDBS Bank

James is a respected human resources professional with extensive experience in setting HR policies, recruitment, talent development, compensation planning, and restructuring.

Michael Jenkins, Chief Executive Officer,Human Capital Leadership Institute

Michael has been named one of HR Magazine’s Most Influential HR Thinkers. He brings several years of experience in the HR industry and has published Doing Business with the Japanese (Hodder), Teach Yourself Business Japanese (Hodder), Business Briefing Japan (Cassell), Absolute Beginners Business Japanese (Hodder), and Asian Leadership: What Works ed. Dave Ulrich (McGraw Hill).

Raj Kasi, Chief Commercial Officer at impress.ai

Raj currently focuses on business expansion and growth. He brings a decade of experience in human resources and has built a career in the executive search space, partnering with leadership teams at financial services, natural resources, and chemical industries.

A big thank you to NTUC for hosting this event and giving our team the opportunity to present!

Interested in learning how AI can help your recruitment team experience:

– Upto 81% reduction in the time to qualify candidates 
– Upto 30% reduction in the cost of hire
– 5X increase in reach

impress.ai a well funded, Singaporean company and we work with 10 government agencies as well as enterprises including DBS Bank, Accenture, and Singtel. Email us at contact@impress.ai to learn how we can help you save time and improve efficiency. 

DBS Power Hour: Understanding AI and how it is reshaping recruitment and HR

DBS Bank invited impress.ai CTO, Dr. VT to speak at DBS Power Hour.

impress.ai, an AI chatbot software for recruiters, was invited by DBS Bank to speak at DBS Power Hour on Wednesday, 19 September.

Highlights of the event

The afternoon consisted of insights, case studies, and discussions about:

  • Understanding AI: A journey through 7 myths
  • How the HR role is evolving in an AI powered economy
  • HR case studies from enterprises using AI platforms

Speaker

Dr. Vaisagh Viswanathan (VT)

VT is the co-founder and CTO at impress.ai, where he manages all things technology. He describes himself as a programmer, a scientist, and a geek.

A big thank you to DBS Bank for hosting this event!

Interested in being a part of the future of recruitment?

Email contact@impress.ai to learn how impress.ai can help your team experience: 

– Upto 81% reduction in the time to qualify candidates 
– Upto 30% reduction in the cost of hire
– 5X increase in reach

impress.ai a well funded, Singaporean company and we work with 10 government agencies as well as enterprises like DBS Bank, Accenture, and Singtel.

The Next Generation of HR: AI and Chatbots

The Next Generation of HR: AI and Chatbots, co-hosted by impress.ai and NASSCOM.

impress.ai, an AI chatbot software for recruiters, partnered with National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM), the trade association of the Indian IT and BPO industry, to co-host The Next Generation of HR: AI and Chatbots on Thursday, 13 September 2018.

Highlights of the event

The evening consisted of insights, use cases, and discussions about:

  • What HR professionals need to know about AI and chatbots
  • Digital trends and tools impacting the future of HR
  • How the HR role is evolving in today’s digital economy
  • HR case studies from Singapore’s most innovative enterprises

Speaker

Dr. Vaisagh Viswanathan (VT)

CTO and co-founder at impress.ai, VT is In charge of all things technology at the company. He holds a PhD in computer science from NTU and describes himself as a programmer, a scientist, a geek.

A big thank you to NASSCOM for co-hosting this event with us!

Interested in the future of recruitment? Email contact@impress.ai to see how your team can experience: 

– Upto 81% reduction in the time to qualify candidates 
– Upto 30% reduction in the cost of hire
– 5X increase in reach

impress.ai a well funded, Singaporean company and we work with 10 government agencies as well as enterprises like DBS Bank, Accenture, and Singtel.

The New Digital Economy for HR: AI, Chatbots, and Blockchain: Co-hosted by CoQoons, Indorse, and impress.ai

Over 50 attendees came to learn about AI, chatbots, blockchain, and how HR is evolving.

impress.ai, an AI chatbot software for recruiters, partnered with CoQoons, a coworking space, and Indorse, a decentralised professional network on Ethereum blockchain, to co-host The New Digital Economy for HR: AI, Chatbots, & Blockchain on Tuesday, 28 August 2018.

Highlights of the event

The evening consisted of insights, use cases, and discussions about:

  • What HR professionals need to know about AI and blockchain
  • Digital trends and tools impacting the future of HR
  • How the HR role is evolving in today’s digital economy
  • HR case studies from Singapore’s most innovative enterprises

Speakers

Dr. Vaisagh Viswanathan (VT)

CTO and co-founder at impress.ai, VT is In charge of all things technology at the company. He holds a PhD in computer science from NTU and describes himself as a programmer, a scientist, a geek.

Gaurang Torvekar

CEO and co-founder at Indorse, Gaurang has been working in the Blockchain space from the last 2.5 years, and is considered to be a blockchain thought leader in South East Asia.

The Venue

CoQoons, subsidiary of Mapletree, is a coworking space that spans over 11,000 sqft of flexible work spaces such as hotdesking, window bars with sea view, height adjustable desks, private offices and meeting facilities. Boasting ‘One Location, Two Stunning Views’, our space offers unparalleled views of the lush greenery from Mount Faber and the blue waters surrounding Sentosa.

A big thank you to CoQoons and Indorse for co-hosting this event with us!

Interested to see how your team can experience:

– Upto 81% reduction in the time to qualify candidates 
– Upto 30% reduction in the cost of hire
– 5X increase in reach

impress.ai a well funded, Singaporean company and we work with 10 government agencies as well as enterprises like DBS Bank, Accenture, and Singtel.

Email contact@impress.ai to see a free product demo and learn more.