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Redefining hiring with emerging tech

Digitalization has disrupted HR in a big way. There are seismic shifts in the way organizations attract, hire, retain and develop top talent. Candidates are taking advantage of the digital age that’s characterized by easy, immediate access to (sometimes) overwhelming information. They seem to know organizations long before they even decide to interview.

Additionally, India’s booming economy is flooding candidates with enviable job opportunities in new age technologies like AI, data sciences and the good old developer roles. The new traits of prospective IT employees are a yearning for learning and consistent, and proactive upskilling. 

Another feature of new age talent is the increasingly multi-generational workforce; Gen X to Gen Z. A one size fits all practice will unceremoniously fail. Add to this progressive parameters like ensuring gender diversity or hiring from the LGBTQ+ community, including women returning from a career break or hiring from Tier 2 or 3 cities and towns that all call for customized approaches.

new age talent

Emerging tech like AI, data science and robotics have huge transformational potential when it comes to influencing the recruitment cycle or process. The HR technology marketplace is a $400bn market globally. Investor interest in this sector is steadily growing globally and in India as well. It is estimated that Indian firms can save at least $600 Mn annually with HR tech. 
Let’s take a moment and dive into how emerging tech can impact Talent Acquisition strategy and processes aimed at today’s new age talent group. 
  • A strong digital brand presence is built with digital marketing techniques that help (corporate) brands connect and influence the potential workforce. Approaches could include data-analytics led social media strategies that customize communication with prospects. Also, candidate mindshare is owned by employing multi-format and effective storytelling that consistently communicate organizational values and mission across channels. Augmenting these touchpoints could be immersive (branded) experiences that leverage Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality in employer branding efforts.
  • Talent Sourcing is no longer relegated to the ‘post and pray’ strategy. An outbound hiring strategy powered by AI and ML engineered hiring platforms will help scour for difficult-to-find top talent. Gamification, Digital Ads, Video job postings and descriptions along with Infographic style job posts on platforms like twitter and instagram do wonders for recruitment efforts like employee referrals and bringing in inbound candidates.
  • Talent rediscovery is a deep dive into the huge repository of resumes amassed within organizations’ applicant tracking system (ATS). They are a true treasure trove when seen through the lens of data analytics combined with ML and AI tech. The emerging tech can smartly automate the matching and ranking of resumes, and further map resumes to current requirements.
  • Chatbots scheduling interviews is just one example of Automation in the recruitment space. As the tech evolves, the tech could go on to carry out initial pre-screening of resumes, and save recruiters’ time for more direct candidate engagement.
  • Candidate engagement or the selection process is being particularly disrupted the most. Sophisticated video interview platforms are making remote interactions that much easier, faster and cheaper for the candidate and employer.
  • Accurate Data Analysis measures effectiveness of the new age digital recruitment tools, by collecting and analyzing candidate feedback. This helps pinpoint areas of concern and taking adequate steps to overcome the issues in the recruitment process, and to ensure HR tech investments have competitive ROI.
  • Finally, post-offer engagement combined with a personalized connection with the candidates is making the difference in the era of indiscriminate branding-message overload. Elements like soft on-boarding before candidates even begun their journey with the organization can smartly leverage emerging tech. A lot more organizations are also using tools like training modules that can be remotely accessed, at anytime and anywhere. This helps businesses train employees and get them project or client-facing-ready as early as day 1.
Candidate experience is at the center of the Talent Acquisition strategy and is the emerging differentiator. Paper pushers are not the need of the hour. Talent Acquisition teams have to now be made of talent advisors who have their ears to the ground, and know the talent market landscape. These individuals should be able to cut across usual checkmarks and notice candidate potential, which calls for a strong customer focus and strong consulting skills. 

A version of this article appeared in People Matters.

Disclaimer: The statements and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the positions of Thoughtworks.

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