If you've streamlined your recruitment and hiring process to maximize technology, you may be missing out on the most promising candidates.
According to the results of a new study from Randstad, workers think technology should be utilized in the recruitment process – but not to the exclusion of an authentic human component. The majority of those surveyed felt the entire job search process has become far too impersonal.
"The findings reinforce what we've believed for quite some time, that successful talent acquisition lies at the intersection between technology and human touch," said Linda Galipeau, CEO of Randstad North America.
It's important for employers to walk this fine line – and it is easier than you may think. According to the study, job candidates reported one of the most important factors in creating a positive impression of a company began with the hiring manager's ability to connect personally.
Humanizing your recruitment process begins with writing the best job ad, Liz Ryan, author and HR expert, wrote in a Forbes article. Avoid formal third-person writing and make it more personal from the beginning. This invites the candidate to engage on a personal level and to show up as their best self, not just a resume of dry facts.
Then, advised Ryan, take the time to respond to candidates more personally than a simple notification that they will be contacted if further information is required. Instead, make the receipt notification friendlier and invite them to learn more about the company on your social media channels. Begin building that connection and brand loyalty as soon as you engage with those who have shown an interest in joining the team.
Finally, be sure to follow up with candidates if the process is taking longer than expected and let them know when the position has been filled, said Ryan. This takes extra time, but by showing you respect candidates' time and effort in applying, they are more likely to reapply in the future and walk away with a positive impression of the company as a whole.
"In a tightening labor market, companies cannot afford to lose potential talent due to a poor hiring experience," Galipeau added. "And in a technology-driven world of talent, it's not only about how a company markets itself, but what others say about the company that has a positive impact on employer branding."
Employers should think outside the corporate toolbox for creating an authentic experience for prospective employees. For example, you can create a pop-up Facebook group for specific employment openings. Invite those who have applied to join in the response email and have the hiring manager give Facebook live updates and an announcement when the position has been filled. You can also invite prospective employees to a video conference to cover the details of the position and information about the company.
The ultimate lesson in this: It is important to leverage technology to make internal processes more efficient, but don't lose the human connection in the automation.