What Will Recruiting Automation Look Like in 2020?

One of the terms with the biggest buzz over the past year or two has undoubtedly been “Recruiting Automation.” To date it’s been buzz without a lot of substance behind it. Will 2020 be the year that changes? The change is certainly coming and it will transform recruiting in a way we haven’t seen since the late 90s when technology (think phone, fax, computers & spreadsheets) went from general purpose applications to true recruiting support (think ATS and the Internet). 

Recruiting Automation’s Impact on Recruiting Team Size

While there is no baseline to establish and then measure it, the number of support staff/recruitment specialists has likely increased over the past decade. While the number of people with “recruiter” in their title may have dropped to accommodate specialists in areas such as Sourcing, TA Operations, Employer Branding, Recruitment Marketing, TA Analytics etc., the overall size of recruiting teams has increased. Particularly when you take into account the shift to centralized talent acquisition teams.

That is about to change. Automation will whittle away these centers of recruiting embedded within corporations.

The slight dip in recruiters bends exponentially as real replacement automation of recruiting functionality becomes possible (scheduling, screening, matching, standard communications, feedback, etc.) with a well-integrated tech stack overseen by a fraction of the humans once required.

The Next Big Impact of Recruiting Automation

Looking beyond 2020, Recruiting Automation is perhaps the biggest threat to RPOs and agencies. If you can hire people with AI, then you don’t need to outsource. Outsourcing is costly. Come budget time, more and more companies will be increasing their automation spend and decreasing money sent to outsourcing. For those with more of an in-house focus, sourcing could be on the way out with more emphasis on recruitment marketing. These might just be the next areas to watch. 

Gerry Crispin

Gerry Crispin

Gerry co-authored eight books on the evolution of staffing and has written 100s of articles and whitepapers on similar topics during a career in Human Resources that spans more than 40 years from HR leadership positions at Johnson and Johnson; to boutique Executive Search firms; a Career Services Director at the University where he received his Engineering and 2 advanced degrees in Organizational/Industrial Behavior; and, GM of a major recruitment advertising firm even as he launched CareerXroads 25 years ago.

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