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Robert Wilde, Head of Volcanic, highlighted three key areas that recruiters should be focusing on when trying to get more value out of their candidate experience. He then offered his predictions for the future of recruitment technology and candidate engagement.
We captured everything that Rob had to say and we highly recommend the read!
“Candidate experience is very difficult to measure, and so when we start thinking about how this experience can be improved, there are three key areas that as an industry we should be focusing on.
Firstly, candidates want better transparency. With all of the technology available today, this level of transparency is something we expect in terms of how we’re applying for jobs, what those employers look like when we apply for those roles, and what the office environment may look like.
Through the application process, we need to make sure that we have much more visibility of what is going on, such as how many other people are applying for the same position, what is my percentage match to that particular job, and what is happening behind the scenes.
Candidates also want to be able to receive and critically provide feedback. Social platforms have led to this as a big social shift. The likes of conversations on LinkedIn and Facebook have meant that now although candidates have always wanted to receive feedback particularly in an interview process, actually providing feedback is a new candidate experience phenomenon, and so we have to find better ways of doing that. This may be through various portals and other forms of technology that typically just don’t exist in our current technology setup.
Candidates want better status updates. In other aspects of our lives we are used to dealing with live trackers, we’re used to delivery notifications, and so candidates expect to be on the pulse with real time information about what’s going on. So the technology that exists in other areas of our lives has raised the bar substantially, and actually applying for a job is still a very archaic process, particularly from a data point of view.
One of our biggest challenges is to think about how technology is going to play a part in opening up a lot of data that is presented to and interacted with by candidates. I think we can all appreciate that no-one in recruitment is doing a particularly good job of this today, and that is because the technology we have available just isn’t sophisticated enough.
This isn’t something that I would expect you to fix in the next six months, but it’s about encouraging you to have a whole new rethink of the architecture.
You can’t just go and buy a new system which gives you transparency or feedback, what we need to really start thinking about is how is the data flowing through our organisations and how does all the data really start to play together.
So let’s just think about the future, because I think that the application process is likely to go through a fairly major change. We see a lot of the big tech vendors, such as Google for Jobs, LinkedIn, Indeed, Facebook for Jobs, and their master plan is obviously to learn everything about us and collect all of those data points. They are all fighting for our attention, and they know a huge amount about us.
We’re expecting these big tech giants to be really dominating the space of job discovery, and if we also start thinking about different channels, such as Whatsapp and Facebook Messenger, these channels are now more commercialised than ever. If we think about how these channels connect to the big tech giants, we can start to see how we are going to be interacting with jobs in the future.
At Volcanic, we’ve seen a reduction in the amount of interest in SEO from our customers and a lot more focus on building much higher quality websites, because we realise that even now we’re starting to lose this tech battle to some of the big tech giants.
But actually, if you start thinking about going through the process as a candidate, when they’ve found the job and clicked ‘apply’, that application process becomes a one-to-one experience.
A single candidate, applying for a single job.
That process starts to become a lot more sensitised and more personal, and the nuances of that application process inhibit the scale of those big tech giants. So my prediction is that we will see the tech giants taking a major play in the discovery and finding of jobs, but when it comes to the application process, this is where the recruitment technology providers such as Volcanic can continue to make a real difference and provide a particularly sensitive candidate experience.
So when we start thinking about the technology available to us today - and if we take a look at the Volcanic candidate portal - this attempts to think about those three key areas of candidate experience. We’re looking for a much more transparent experience in terms of how you’re progressing through a process, we want to make sure we can provide and receive feedback in these two-way portals, and the status updates are a really good way to surface up this data.
But we’ve really got to rethink about how this all works, because this isn’t just about buying a technology vendor, it’s about pulling together four or five individual systems, and the key challenge here is that these systems don’t talk to each other very well. And it’s worth talking about our trap-door integrations where data goes from one system, through a trap door, and it lands in another system. Volcanic integrates with a number of CRMs and multi-posters, including Access Recruitment CRM. Our integrations ensure your recruitment business can automate processes, save time and improve data quality, so you can focus on doing what you do best.
How do we start thinking about candidates as an immutable record? If we think about the crypto-world and how they’ve managed to have money that can transact, it’s the same kind of digital coin that will move through. That’s the kind of digital advancement that the recruitment industry needs, it’s not available today, not in any vendor on the market, it’s just something that at Volcanic, collectively as part of our roadmaps and general play, we’re trying to think about how we build that immutable candidate record and how that can actually play a role in a much more integrated digital process.
When we start thinking about privacy and data, clearly a much stronger data model that sits behind your organisation will allow you to respond much better to GDPR enquires and also crack the big area which is privacy. So data will play a huge role in the future.
To wrap up, we’ve got to think about how we connect all of these systems together, but ultimately we’ve got to think about how these systems work together as one, not just multiple systems that are joined together in various tenuous links.”
If you’re interested in learning more about how Volcanic’s leading recruitment website platform is leading the charge in the future of the candidate application process, a member of our team will be happy to speak to you! Get in touch today.