How to Create a Positive Candidate Experience with HR Technology

How to Create a Positive Candidate Experience with HR Technology

If we are to go by what experts are predicting for the recruitment industry in 2018, improving employer brand is going to be one of the topmost tasks. This essentially means that as a recruiter you will have to, in addition to other activities, work hard on enhancing candidate experience. In this age of constant competition, you as a business can only grow when you have top talent working for you and it doesn’t take an expert to decipher that to attract the best, you need to provide them an experience they deserve. Technology can go a long way in helping you achieve this goal.

Here are 4 simple ways to use technology to create a good candidate experience in recruitment:

Using technology to communicate is one of the best ways to improve candidate experience

Using technology to communicate is one of the best ways to improve candidate experience

A research by Software Advice reveals that out of the many grievances that applicants had, communication or lack of communication was a major reason for a poor candidate experience. Over one third of the respondents to the survey said that they would prefer more communication in the entire hiring process.

Sometimes we can’t even blame the recruiters for this communication gap as there are so many stakeholders involved and considering hiring is such a time consuming process, it is actually quite a task to maintain track of 100s of candidates who have applied to a particular role. In a scenario where at any point in time there are at least 10 or more openings in a SME, we can only imagine the kind of efforts that are required for maintaining a lag free communication.

If you are interested in a particular candidate and you do not convey the results within the due time, he might find employment elsewhere. This is where technology comes into the picture. Recruitment software will allow you to generate automated emails that can be scheduled to be triggered on particular events such as success or failure to pass a particular stage of hiring. You can personalize these emails with your logo and company colors to reinforce the brand.

(Also Read: How Recruitment Software Works, its Benefits and Main Features)

Using technology to improve employer branding is one of the candidate experience best practices

Creating a strong employer brand is essential if you want to communicate to prospective employees that your company is a desirable place to work.  Giving insight into your work culture and ethics to jobseekers is actually helping them make a decision regarding their suitability for a role in your company. This assistance will create a positive candidate experience and help you grow your reputation as a recruiter. While the basic purpose of an applicant tracking system is to organize and track resumes, the software can be customized to increase brand awareness.

A recruiter can promote a more pleasant applicant experience by merely providing clear details of the benefits that come with the job and what’s it like to work for your business. Most ATS come with the capability to create and integrate the company career site. You can use this section to communicate company brand to candidates through “What’s it like to work here” videos and other details regarding the company’s vision and values.  Most applicant tracking software vendors will assist you with personalizing the hiring process through use of company’s logo and company colors. This ensures uniformity and conveys a seamless application process, right from filling the application form to responding for interviews.

(Also Read: 5 Must Haves for a Company Careers Website)

Using technology to improve recruitment process is a great tip for improving candidate experience

Using technology to improve recruitment process is a great tip for improving candidate experience

The same research by Software Advice cites unclear application instruction as the top cause for negative candidate experience. For example if the job application instruction does not clearly indicate the eligibility for the role, it can create a lot of heartburn for the applicants. Using technology, recruiters can address this very basic hiring mistake. Applicant tracking systems allow recruiters to create and store templates of all the past job requisitions within the system, which can be used time and again without the need to create a requisition from scratch every time a new vacancy arises. This not only reduces the error rate but also reduces the workload for recruiters.

Plus, a candidate applying for the role through recruitment solution can complete the entire process without much effort by filling in the required fields and uploading the CV instantly. Once a jobseeker clicks on the Apply button, they can instantly fill the application form and upload their resume instantaneously. Not only does it reduce the work on a candidate’s part as he won’t have to manually email their CV but also improves recruiter’s productivity.

(Also Read: Suggestions to improve recruitment and selection process)

Using technology to reduce hiring timelines is a good idea to improve candidate experience

Using technology to reduce hiring timelines is a good idea to improve candidate experience

21% of the surveyed candidates said that improvement in hiring timelines can greatly impact the overall hiring process. There are no prizes in guessing the usefulness of applicant tracking software in improving speed of hiring. With every aspect of the hiring process automated and system controlled, there is a huge improvement in the time lost between getting approvals of the stakeholders involved which ultimately tells on the hiring speed. Plus, quick communication as we have already discussed, further reduces the total time taken to fill an open vacancy. This is just a classic win-win situation for all the parties involved, from candidate, who gets a better experience to the recruiter who improves his productivity and contributes positively to business bottom-line.

(Also Read: How to reduce hiring cycle time)



How to Select an Applicant Tracking System?

Good hiring decisions often play a decisive role in the growth of any organization. An HR, thus, has one of the most important roles to play in ensuring that the business meets its objectives. A company is a function of the employees working there, which explains why we need an applicant tracking system that not only makes it easier to hire but also facilitates quality over quantity. Here are some tips on what to look for in an applicant tracking system:

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Choosing the Right Recruiting Software for Your Business

Choosing the Right Recruiting Software for Your Business

Enough has been said about the importance of using automated tools for hiring.  Irrespective of whether you use the latest cloud-based technology or traditional on-premise HR software, the benefits of these recruitment solutions are immense (Also Read: Advantages of using an applicant tracking system). Technology in itself is a huge enabler as it empowers the user to perform more tasks with greater efficiency and accuracy. However, if the choice of technology you use does not match your needs, then much of those benefits that we expect become of little importance. Here is a primer on how to choose a recruitment software that suits your company.

Convincing the top executives of the company to invest in new HR technology, especially in new recruitment solutions is a tough task. You have to justify the cost with the expected ROI, show some concrete evidence in the form of case studies and what not! However, even before you make a move towards this boardroom discussion, you should be sure of what you have chosen as an investment is actually good for your company and suits your hiring needs. An imperfect choice can cripple your productivity instead of improving it.

Here are some points to keep in mind while choosing a suitable recruitment software:

Define your recruitment software requirements

The marketplace is replete with a number of recruitment tools. But not all of them are designed for all types of industries and businesses. If you are into consulting, your expectations from a hiring software will be very different from a product company. Similarly, if you are a startup, you might not require a full-fledged enterprise recruitment management system, as you will be hiring less than, say, an established company with 1000 or more employees. While researching a potential hiring tool, be sure to ask some relevant questions like:

1.) Who was this software designed for? What is the target audience?

2.) What are your current requirements?

3.) Is the software scalable for your future needs?

4.) Who designed this software? Do they have the relevant expertise?

The answer to all these questions will throw up some interesting facts which will be essential when you take the final call.

List the functions that your recruiting software should perform

Once you have sorted out your current requirements and future needs, it’s time to list down the essential functionalities that will fulfill those needs. Think function first. What are the tasks that you want the software to do with minimal manual intervention? Common HR tasks like job posting to different channels, resume collection at one place, resume matching, CV upload, interview scheduling, sending interview emails and reminders must be on top of this list. Any software that you choose should do all these and much more such as tracking candidate progress, automatic SMS/email alerts, analytics and reports and social recruiting through channels such as Facebook and Twitter.  By deciding all that is integral to your hiring process, you can start assigning value to the vendors and their tools accordingly.

(Also Read: Recruitment Software Features)

Select a recruitment software with a user friendly design

Any piece of software that has a steep learning curve is always looked at with disdain by the users, however feature rich it might be. No one wants to waste time trying to figure out the right combinations when you want something done. Recruitment management software should not require long hours of training or high levels of tech know how. The interface should be intuitive and offer minimum resistance to even the first time users. If you are unsure, take the trial version first and explore it extensively before zeroing on any one tool.

Choose a recruiting software which is cloud based

There are many organizations that use different tools for social recruiting, job posting or maintaining internal and external communication. If you also have an existing HR management system in place you would want the new recruitment tool to seamlessly integrate with your current system. A smooth interaction amongst different layers of technology is essential for a quicker transition and greater performance at work.

Again, cloud based systems are all the rage in the market currently and rightly so, as they have numerous benefits over the traditional on-premise software. In ideal conditions, your choice of software should be online or web-based, as the learning curve is less, and you won’t have to spend huge lumps of money on buying servers and other hardware and hiring trained IT personnel for maintaining them. Cloud based system can also be accessed remotely, and require minimal maintenance.

(Also Read: Why Cloud Based ATS is a better option)

Look for a Cost Effective Recruitment Software

The argument that you will be saving efforts through technology is never going to convince the CFO for investing in a new tool. Any investment’s ROI is judged on the basis of the money that it either saves or earns for the business. Therefore, while deciding on the hiring tool you should be able to justify the costs with the ROI. The most feature rich software will also be the most expensive. Will you be able to justify the costs involved? Therefore, while doing your market research, take your time to explore the different options available, make the most of the free trials, and chalk out the options that fit in your budget. If necessary, negotiate with the vendors and squeeze out the best possible deal for your company.

(Also Read: How to Convince Your Management to Invest in HR Technology?)

Consider data security in recruitment solution

Even the best of software require a helping hand to operate at least occasionally. The importance of good vendor support increases if this is the first exposure towards latest technology for your recruiters. Choose a software vendor that is able to deliver necessary training and support whenever required in a timely manner.

If you are choosing a cloud-based solution, data security is of paramount importance. Recruitment involves sharing of a lot of sensitive and private information and keeping that data in safe hands is no less important than any other aspect of your business. A non-compromising attitude on data security will also lend your brand greater credibility in the market and can become one of your USPs.

(Also Read: How to Get Most Out of Recruitment Software? )


Innovations in Recruiting Technology - Past, Present and Future

Recruitment Technology Innovation – Past, Present and Future

When LinkedIn was acquired by Microsoft in 2016, it took everyone by surprise. Microsoft was considered the last name that would be interested in a digital media company whose sole focus was connecting talent and providing talent solutions to recruiters.  But the acquisition did happen, and if we are to believe the statement of LinkedIn Chief Executive Jeff Weiner, LinkedIn’s graph can now be interwoven through the entire Microsoft Suit of Products like Outlook, Windows, Skype amongst others. Future will tell how this will fare for both LinkedIn and Microsoft, but recruitment industry got a big boost with the entry of the tech giant.

2017 has continued to remain significant for the recruitment industry as we already witnessed the launch of Google Hire and rumors of Facebook also entering the recruitment space were also doing the rounds although nothing concrete came out of it. The recruitment industry is at a critical juncture as we witness the highest-profile companies in the world making grand entrance in the world of recruitment. It would be silly to assume that decision makers at Microsoft or Google do not have a long-term strategy and a well thought out plan for their products in recruitment.

The recruitment technology space is lucrative and has an investment potential of billions. It is now for us to wait and watch how these firms, which are known for disrupting trends and making an ever lasting impact on every industry, will affect the incumbents of the recruitment space and everyone else – right from investors to service providers, recruiters to job seekers.

(Also Read: Disruptive HR Practices in 2018: What is changing for HR?)

Innovation in recruitment industry

The below framework visualizes the important shifts across three distinct durations of innovation. This is a generalized framework which fails to register thousands of startups that haven’t had that much of an impact. However, it does provide an overall view of innovation in recruitment space over the past 20 years.


Innovation in recruitment industry


Moving from ATS to RMS

Though a bit slow on exploring the possibilities of technology, progress has been made in terms of using tools for finding and tracking candidates.  The Applicant Tracking System, with its ability to digitally store candidate CVs, emerged as game changer during 1990s. It saved a lot of heartburn for recruiters and protected them from lawsuits through infusing more consistency in hiring practices. However, the earlier versions of ATS did little for increasing the efficiency of recruiters and focused more on compliance.

Recruitment Technology Innovation - Moving from ATS to RMS

This has changed in the past few years. There has been continuous improvement in the ATS with more features being added. The ATS 1.0 was a unique software installed locally on the customer’s server and focused on enterprises. Taleo was the biggest name back then. It was soon replaced by a new “web-first” version ATS 2.0 in the early 2000s and new players like Jobvite gained considerable spotlight and market share. This was also the period when enterprise companies like Oracle took the first step towards building full suites of HR software.

However, we are still behind time to witness a true revolution. Most companies and staffing agencies still use their manual expertise or outdated tools for tracking potential candidates for vacant positions. These tools lack the capability of posting job ads to job boards and different social media platform. The ATS is indeed a beneficial tool, but working with them demands a lot of manual dexterity, for instance, searching for right candidate using keyword research.  According to the latest insights from Alexander Mann Solutions, the new age Applicant Tracking System must progress from basic tracking to managing all processes right from sourcing to on-boarding and beyond.

This is where Recruitment Management Systems come into picture. Also known as the ‘wave of ATS 3.0’ we now see a whole new breed of HR software, also sometimes known as RMS or Recruitment Management System taking over the mantle. This new breed of software is mobile-first, user-friendly, feature rich, cloud-only and open to integrations. In fact, the development of RMS is one of the bigger highlights of the $14-plus billion marketplace for HR software and platforms.

How the ATS 3.0/RMS is different from previous versions?

While the traditional ATS is heavily process driven, the RMS incorporates all elements that HR heads are now seeking.  It is in fact a one stop solution for all your hiring needs. From having features like resume parsing and social media monitoring to post-hire tracking and candidate tracking capabilities, a RMS can do all this and much more. A good RMS not only takes care of all four stages of recruitment process that includes advertising jobs, receiving applications, screening applications and final selection but also can be used for performance appraisals, talent forecasting and employee management once the candidate is hired. These Recruitment Management Systems have advanced communication capabilities allowing HR managers to email, SMS or even tweet to potential hires. Moreover, all this happens in the cloud, which has its own immense benefit.

(Also Read: What are the benefits of Cloud Computing for Human Resources?)

Selecting the right recruitment software

The selection of recruitment software is not an easy process owing to its importance to talent acquisition or staffing firm or a recruiting department. There can be huge repercussions on recruiter’s performance and productivity, not to forget the impact it will have on the candidate experience. Hence, it helps to ask certain questions so as to arrive at a definite conclusion.

1) What to look for while buying a recruitment management system?

2) What type of organization you are?  Are you a consultant, a SME, startup or a large organization working in diverse sectors? The needs of each are different and require a different type of solution.

3) What are your key areas of improvement?

If this is your first encounter with HR software, it will help to define the pain-points of your human resource department which are affecting your business. The innovation that we call RMS is a tremendous tool for connecting prospects to right work opportunities.

(Also Read: How to Choose the Right Recruiting Software for Your Business?)