Hiring has always been at the forefront of business owners' minds. After all, what is a business without employees?
But hiring today looks very different than it did just a decade or two ago. The days of handing out resumes in person are all but over. The process of collecting and analyzing job applications have moved in a completely digital direction – and it provides richer insights into candidates than ever.
"Twenty years ago, the resume was a piece of paper," said Jon Bischke, CEO of recruitment software company Entelo. "Now, it's a collection of all [candidate] data that can be found online, like participation in online communities, conferences and meetups. Recruiters can assess whether a person will fit, and learn if he or she has the right skills for the job."
The role of sophisticated data analytics in recruiting
In an article for the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), John Sullivan, industry thought leader and professor at San Francisco State University, said 2017 is "the year of the algorithm." Sullivan said that the recruiting function will finally begin to shift away from a decision model based on past practices and intuition and toward data-driven decisions.
Rachit Jain, founder and CEO at Youth4work, agreed, noting that the same technology used in modern advertising – where Google learns a person's interests, profile and needs based on user data and matches ad displays accordingly – is now seeping into recruitment.
"The challenge of matching billions of people … to a billion [jobs] requiring unique skills and resources is probably the most complex but crucial for [employers]," Jain said.
High-quality analytics programs have already been applied to customer data to help businesses make better strategic decisions. Candidate information will increasingly get the "big-data treatment" so recruiters can quickly and easily locate the best people for the job, experts say.
"Cloud-based hiring tools will allow recruiters and hiring managers to easily and affordably find, evaluate and organize top job candidates, while innovative assessment and filtering techniques will help provide a 360-degree holistic view of top applicants," said Bob Myhal, director of digital marketing at CBC Advertising and former CEO of NextHire. "Through biometric data, companies like NextHire will better predict which candidates are most likely to be a good fit for a position, and which are not."
Why your 'employer brand' matters
Savvy candidates will evaluate company brands before applying to or accepting a job, much in the same way they evaluate consumer brands when shopping, said Amber Hyatt, SPHR and vice president of product marketing at HR software company SilkRoad. They'll be researching you as much as you research them, so make your website a strong tool for engaging talent.
"It's imperative [to have] a well-designed career site to deliver a cohesive brand image that reflects the company mission, vision and values," Hyatt told Business News Daily. "The company brand experience, in combination with detailed job descriptions and an online application, engages job seekers and helps them determine proactively if they are a cultural fit to the organization, and whether to apply."
Jain echoed this sentiment, saying that millennials want jobs of interest and are now probably too quick to jump jobs, since it is not just about making money anymore. Thus, for employers, finding the right fit is 10 times more important than it used to be.
"Building a healthy working culture and employer brand is getting more important day by day. But most importantly, employers and recruiters have to adapt and move to the modern recruiting technology faster," Jain said. "Employers should work more on improving and investing in their hiring process to find the right skilled person."
Additional reporting by Nicole Fallon. Some source interviews were conducted for a previous version of this article.