How has COVID-19 impacted recruitment?

‘We see all the big companies push the pace in virtual hiring. It all points to this being a permanent way we go forward’

How has COVID-19 impacted recruitment?
The pandemic has forced companies to move towards digital channels faster, says one recruitment expert.

COVID-19 has affected all aspects of the work life and HR processes, both with lockdowns and a return to the “new normal.”

So how has the pandemic changed the landscape of recruitment? It has forced companies to move towards digital channels faster, according to Tony Anello, chief commercial officer at recruitment firm Modern Hire.

“COVID-19 has really accelerated and even mandated that companies know how to recruit and they know how to hire virtually.”

Employers now have diverse options to conduct interviews, and many are leveraging “asynchronous or on-demand interviews” to ask questions that they deem critical if they are going to move forward in the hiring process with specific candidates.

“This asynchronous process has led to real efficiency,” says Anello, in allowing recruiters and hiring managers to have multiple interviews going on all at once and “transforming from what had been an in-person process traditionally to a tech-led process today.”

All the big employers, irrespective of industry, are pushing the pace in virtual hiring, he says.

“It all points to this being a permanent way we go forward. Certainly, as it relates to high-volume positions or where you have a labour market as we do right now — with so many candidates applying for fewer jobs than there were before — it’s imperative that we have mechanisms to allow efficiency to take over.”

Two-way exchange
For the past 10 years, there has been a progressive change towards a two-way information exchange between employers and applicants, which makes for a much more transparent relationship, says Anello who is based in Minneapolis.

“The modern process and advertising for jobs are much more about… a two-way information exchange, where there are lines being blurred more and it’s more around introducing [candidates] to their employer value proposition, making sure there is some transparency about the job to eliminate wrong fits and a whole host of other things that demonstrate no longer is it just an adversarial process [where] the company has all of the leverage.”

A simple exchange of text messages, for example, is “a really good first attempt to provide some transparency about the job, and to ensure that there’s a fit, from a minimum qualification criteria, that somebody is worthwhile to go forward with,” he says.

“In the last decade or so, we’ve been slowly, if not at times more rapidly, progressing towards a virtual hiring environment where these types of tools are being leveraged more and more.”

Hiring experience
The whole experience of the process is critical to hiring success, says Anello.

“It’s required in modern times to treat the modern candidate differently, and to make the entire process, even from advertising the job, a different experience, a much more positive experience.”

Data from Modern Hire support the value of making the hiring process a positive one: 87 per cent of candidates say that a positive hiring experience can change their mind about a role of a company that they once doubted; 82 per cent of candidates say the hiring process influences their decision to work at an organization; and 65 per cent of candidates share their negative experience about the hiring process with their inner circle.

Thirty per cent of American workers are planning to look for a new job  once the pandemic is over according to a new survey.

More than nine in 10 (92 per cent) of jobseekers in the United States  have experienced poor recruiting practices at some point in their career — and 49 per cent have turned down an offer from a company because of that experience, says a survey.

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