Our recent webinar ‘How to leverage talent acquisition tech for business agility, recovery and growth’ featuring Guidant Global’s CEO, Simon Blockley, and a fantastic panel of 'RecTech' leaders, is now available to view on-demand.
I hope you have time to watch the recording in full as this is one of our industry’s hottest topics right now. But if not, here’s a quick round-up of the key points covered:
Q1: What is the new normal? How are your clients adapting to unprecedented levels of change?
The new normal or the ‘better normal’ is essentially remote, virtual working which has massive implications for how we measure performance. We’re moving from a culture of workforce presenteeism to one that values outputs and productivity.
This is especially relevant in the world of contingent labour, which has historically paid people based on timesheets, and clocking in and out at specific times. We’re currently seeing a shift towards Statement of Work-based tasks and assignments, where employers are making sure they get the outputs they want from contingent resources, not just the hours they bought. All of today’s good VMSs can track outputs as well as hours worked so it’s not a huge step-change in terms of the tech used.
Given the reduced need for face-to-face communication, employers are also becoming more open to looking beyond their local area to source the best talent for the task they need completed. Global on-demand talent marketplaces are becoming more commonplace as employers embrace the remote delivery of work.
We’re also seeing a real desire for tech to increase productivity by supporting people to do their jobs more efficiently as employers strive for agility and to do more with less.
Q2: Is there an increased appetite for new tech solutions and automation post-Covid?
There’s a massively increased appetite for tech solutions post-Covid. We’re seeing organisations moving with pace and really waking up to some of the tech platforms out there. Human behaviour and adoption levels are changing, not necessarily the tech itself which has been there for a while.
As we evolve from a candidate-short market, to a job-short market, we’ll also see a shift from employers focussing on talent attraction and engagement to a focus on selection. Tech can off-set and supplement the historically manual sifting and selection process to make sure the right people for the job get through despite increased numbers of applicants. It supports efficient and quality hiring.
Q3: How are recruiters and employers using automation specifically to support their recovery?
To boost and support recovery you need to make sure the right people are doing the right things for you and that humans are supported and augmented in the right way. Thoughtful and robust automation of basic processes allows us to move people away from the administrative recruitment tasks to focus on the higher value elements of their role.
Employers and recruiters are being much more thoughtful about where to apply their people to tasks and where to embrace automation. For example, allowing candidates to update their own PALSS data (position, availability, location, skills and salary) via an automated chatbot, frees up the recruiter to pick up human interactions when they’re most needed.
Q4: Do virtual and tech tools generally enhance or detract from candidate experience?
A video call can never replace face-to-face interaction but it’s not far off! Virtual and video tools are more than adequate for many recruitment interactions and video is great for keeping levels of human-to-human engagement throughout the hiring process.
Video job specs can also be used to sell in opportunities directly to passive candidates and high value talent to capture interest and get them bought into the role.
Tech has to work for both you and your candidate, and you need to know how to use it properly to get the best output. Due to changing social norms and operational logistics, it’s an absolute necessity for employers to make sure they have the right platforms in place to drive engagement throughout the virtual recruitment journey.
Q5: Do you anticipate increased demand for contingent workforces over the next 12 months? Are workforces becoming more global post-Covid?
The contingent workforce industry has bounced back from historic recessions faster than many other industries, becoming stronger and more vital as a result. We’d expect to see something similar this time around. We also expect to see a fundamental shift in the way companies hire contingent talent as well as the way contingent talent wants to go to work. There are currently 40 million freelancers in the US and 78 million freelancers across the world. This trend is growing, with Gallup predicting that by 2023 over 52% of the US workforce will be participating in the gig economy.
Workforces are without doubt becoming more global. Highly skilled freelance talent can be found all over the world. We expect to see organisations breakdown geographic barriers and ‘sourcing without borders’ by aiming to use the best talent wherever they reside. There are clearly functions that are better suited to remote and on-demand work such as digital transformation, development, design and finance functions.
Q6: What are some of the considerations companies should make when using on-demand tools and platforms to access flexible talent?
There are many benefits to using these staffing platforms to access talent – more transparency, faster fulfilment processes and in many cases better value but there are key differences when compared with how traditional suppliers work.
Firstly compliance – how does the platform manage right to work checks, specifically with on-site talent? Technology has a reputation for side-lining compliance to disrupt a sector. However, worker statuses need to be checked and verified. Does your on-demand talent provider offer adequate checks?
Secondly, a vanilla transactional platform between employers and candidates probably won’t work. Tech providers need to use data analytics and additional tools to predict a good match and assess the reliability of the candidate. At scale hiring within the temporary labour market relies heavily on good data and candidate engagement.
Finally, when things don’t go to plan – no shows or performance issues etc, there needs to be accountability and a channel for support so things can be quickly resolved. Tech alone can’t solve every problem that comes up and having a clear support strategy and point of contact if things go wrong is vital. Technology isn’t a silver bullet for employers or recruiters. It’s most successful when used to augment or enhance existing relationships and experiences. Remember, experience is everything. Really think about how tech will make your candidates and hiring managers feel.
Thank you to our webinar facilitator Robin Sanders – SVP Client Solutions, Guidant Global and expert panellists:
- Simon Blockley – CEO, Guidant Global
- Charlotte Horton – Head of Innovation & Insight, Impellam Group
- Steven Lewis – Global President, RoboRecruiter
- Richard McLaren – CEO and Co-Founder, Hinterview
- Rory Spanier – Client Partner, Toptal
- Oliver Crofton – Managing Director, Flexy