It was impossible to ignore the impact of COVID-19 in 2020. And the (large) ripples it made to how we work and how we recruit represent a significant sea change.
So, what’s new?
While some of these are still predictions, others have already become part of our new reality, and all that’s needed is to ensure that you keep up!
1. Virtual recruiting isn’t just a flash in the pan.
According to a comprehensive report released by LinkedIn, virtual recruiting is here to stay. LinkedIn Insights revealed that 70% of talent professionals are confident that virtual recruiting will become the new standard. And that’s not just interviews and assessments, but the entire onboarding process. Cost-wise, this is good news for most businesses. Although it’s to be noted though that with the rise of a hybrid workforce, it’s likely that a hybrid recruitment process will likely follow.
To bring the virtual experience to life, expect to invest in new tactics like gamification, including augmented reality, quizzes, and interactive guides.
2. Your brand is going to be more critical than ever
While having a strong and authentic employer brand has always played an important role in attracting desirable candidates, your empathy rating will be under closer scrutiny than ever before.
After the year that was, potential recruits will be looking for employers who have reacted to global challenges with support, and demonstrated flexibility. LinkedIn says: “Instead of showcasing the company’s products, perks, and office amenities in polished marketing materials, they’ll publicize what the company is doing to support employees, customers, and communities in times of crisis.”
And the company that does the best job of conveying on social media or through active corporate social responsibility that they’re about people, not perks, programmes - wins.
3. You need to be a remote employer, for at least part of the time
2020 introduced many businesses to the concept of their employees remote working for long periods. And their people liked it!
Slack’s new Future Forum reports that an overwhelming 72% of the employees surveyed want a combination of office and remote work due to the better work-life balance is promotes. And nearly a third don’t ever want to return to the office environment. Flexibility when it comes to WFH could be a deal-breaker when negotiating a job offer with a new hire. It’s now mainstream, not a sweetener.
4. A bigger, more diverse talent pool
One of the side effects (and a major one at that) of the work-from-home movement is that your pool of available talent has expanded. As long as you have the processes to manage it, your employees can work anywhere, and be part-time, full time, casual or under contact.
LinkedIn reports that remote jobs result in over 20% more geographic diversity among applicants.
5. Social attraction
Social media will play an even more critical role in 2021, and should become your not-so-secret weapon in competing to attracting the talent you need to grow your business.
Intelligent use of social media and online platforms (think LinkedIn, Facebook, and Google ads) allows you to target skilled individuals with relevant and desirable skills and encourage them to take a closer look at what you have to offer. Not only can you build brand awareness and promote your employer brand (see point 2, above), but advertise specific vacancies to a nominated target audience. By taking a data-driven approach, your budget will go further, as will your reach.
6. It’s all about automation and AI
The recruitment process has experienced a dramatic digital overhaul over the last decade. And we expect 2021 to be the year where automation takes over!
It will reduce your recruiting costs, improve process efficiency, and free up your team from menial and manual tasks. Expect to use algorithms and artificial intelligence (AI) to automate your CV screening process, including replying to candidates and scheduling interviews.
However, the trick to delivering an engaging recruitment process will be striking just the right balance between automated and human interaction.
7. Candidates with excellent soft skills will be in demand!
In 2020, LinkedIn released a study on the most desirable and in-demand hard and soft skills for the year. The report cites creativity, persuasion, collaboration, adaptability, and emotional intelligence (EQ) as being the most important.
Experience, qualifications, and specialist skills will always count when recruiting. But these soft skills should be at the top of your ‘must have’ candidate attributes – and you’ll need ways to measure them in your recruitment process.
Change is a great catalyst for opportunity. As the recruitment landscape evolves, so must the technology we use, the processes we engineer, and our ability to meet candidate and business expectations in an exciting new world.