Two key recruiting automation (RA) challenges

If you’ve been paying attention and shopping around, some of the promises of recruiting automation (RA) are already here for the taking if you have the budget. Automated assistants can handle basic tasks like sending an offer letter, scheduling an interview, or researching a candidate’s social profile. However, if you scan recent headlines about recruiting automation you’d think we’d already arrived in the promised land:

It’s enough to make a recruiter feel like you’re missing the bandwagon. And big headlines always get us to thinking… in this case, what’s the reality behind the AI hype within the world of talent acquisition? We asked attendees at the 2018 Recruiting Automation & Innovation Meeting if they’ve already implemented some sort of AI in talent acquisition:

Less than half of the 50 TA leaders from companies attending our recruiting automation colloquium meeting report to have any type of Artificial Intelligence implemented within their recruiting processes.  What’s worth noting is that 100% of attendees said they are in the stages of investigating and considering Recruiting Automation technology in some format. At CXR, we’re curious to see how this graph will shift, if at all when asked a follow-up question at the 2019 meeting.

Two key challenges implementing recruiting automation

At the meeting, there were certainly some good examples of AI in use and while not quite as extreme a delivery as vendor headlines or HR Tech booth barkers might have you believe there is certainly progress towards eliminating menial tasks and freeing up recruiters’ time.. Good stuff for sure.

[Is recruiting automation driving towards automation and AI?]

The discussions that were the most noteworthy were those about both new and redundant RA challenges. It seems that most talent acquisition professionals are experiencing more frustration than just “wow” moments when it comes to implementing any type of recruiting automation. When you’re early on the adoption curve, that’s certainly to be expected. If you also find yourself a bit overwhelmed, know you’re in good company. The two most common challenges when considering and implementing automation and AI? Vendors & internal resistance.

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Sure, vendors are challenging when they fill your inbox and call you time and time again but the savvy TA professionals know that the real challenge is finding a vendor who is willing to partner with you. In essence, the products are a commodity of sorts and the difference is the people behind those products. When you find a vendor who will be your partner, you have the opportunity to develop and evolve side-by-side. Ideally, you also end up with a long-term relationship that includes the history to think ahead with you.

[CXR Uncorked with Nick Mailey]

Who evaluates your technology? It rarely resides in one TA team and all too often technology evaluation is happening in small silos. That isolation makes the burdens heavier than they should be and often means missing out on opportunities to leverage the technology across teams. One solution CXR members discussed? Developing a technology innovation team to review options and define (and measure) a pilot.

Other internal challenges that won’t surprise you if you’re a champion of new technology: selling the truly innovative ideas to upper management and legal. Recruiting automation is evolving so rapidly that it’s hard for everyone to keep up. There are certainly pitfalls to be considered. After all, those automated solutions are built by humans and, try as we might, we still haven’t figured out how to completely eliminate unconscious bias. The challenge of building your internal case might be just as significant as the evaluation. And then, of course, there’s the challenge of implementation… but that’s another headline for another day.

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Chris Hoyt

A veteran of recruiting and HR, Hoyt is a sought-after speaker with presentations including national conferences with SHRM, LinkedIn, HR Technology, ERE and others in the USA as well as UNLEASH, iRecruit, Australasian Talent Conference and more abroad. Chris has been promoting and leading full scale and enterprise-wide integrations of social media and mobile marketing within workforce strategies for his entire career. His expertise and passion for interactive/social recruiting, candidate experience, and both national and international recruiting strategies are all areas that Hoyt now leverages as co-owner and President at CareerXroads, a Recruiting/Staffing consulting and think tank organization that works with corporate leaders from around the world to break out of traditional recruitment practices and push the envelope in an effort to win the ongoing war for top talent.

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