| 3 min read

Has Artificial Intelligence Transformed Talent Acquisition?

Written by Rich Vercesi

If we’ve heard it once, we’ve heard it one thousand times; artificial intelligence is going to transform the way we do business. And it’s no different in the world of recruitment.

As seemingly the biggest buzzword in the world of emerging tech at the moment, artificial intelligence is being cited as the way forward in talent acquisition; namely due to it’s ability to fundamentally transform the way that we, as recruiters, source and engage the top talent.

 But, with such huge claims being made, it leads us to question whether this technology really is what’s changing the industry. It’s undeniable that talent acquisition has evolved – gone are the spray and pray days when every recruiter sent 100 messages to 100 vaguely relevant candidates and hoped for the best. 

The simple fact is that the abuse of platforms like LinkedIn has led to huge amounts of apathy from potential candidates, who are now impartial to speculative inMails about ‘the latest hot opportunities’ and are simply refusing to respond.

As a result, recruiters have had to become more innovative when it comes to sourcing and engaging talent; but does that mean that technology – and, in particular, artificial intelligence – is the answer? 

Whilst it’s being touted as the way forward by the likes of Forbes and -, many leaders in the talent industry today are actually turning away from the idea that artificial intelligence is the future of recruitment. Instead, they maintain that a return to the fundamentals of talent acquisition – to communicating, networking and forming and nurturing relationships – is where the industry is headed.  


As Ingeborg van Harten, Global Head of Talent and Engagement at Irdeto put it: 

"A lot of people talk about tools all the time, and them being revolutionary, but whilst they might make certain tasks easier, they certainly can’t replace personal contact”.


These are sentiments echoed by Gaelle Polart of adidas who maintained that businesses

“Cannot fully automate the recruitment process, because at the end of the day it’s about human resourcing so you still need to have that ‘people person’ in there”.


And to prove the saying that ‘once is chance, twice is coincidence, third time is a pattern’, specialist technical sourcer Yves Greijn – who has sourced for the likes of Uber and Facebook – put it simply that 

"Recruitment needs to grow up, get some more domain knowledge about what it is hiring for, and actually approach people with something that makes sense…if you take the time to do so, you’re much more likely to get a response than when you just spray and pray to hundreds of candidates at once”


As skilled candidates become in ever-increasing demand, they simply have too much choice over which businesses to engage with, and which opportunities to consider. Tom Pyle of Pusher proves just this, saying that 

"Every candidate is being inundated with requests from businesses, because their skill set is so in demand”.


As a result, focusing on this human-centric approach is now absolutely key to standing out from the crowd and engaging the talent that businesses so desperately need. Because, as intelligence as technology becomes, it can’t pick up the phone and have a meaningful conversation, and it certainly can’t go to MeetUps of take a candidate out for coffee.

Companies who are getting on board with this shift, and who aren’t just waiting for the next piece of technology, are invariable the ones who are going to get the attention of the top talent.

This talent is now absolutely critical to business success, with a recent by LinkedIn and Capgemini finding that, of 1,200 human resourcing and talent executives, 54% believed that the digital transformation talent gap is hampering digital transformation and competitiveness in their firms.

This sentiment has been echoed by MuleSoft, who revealed that four out of five businesses are expected to see a negative impact on their revenue, in the next 12 months, if they fail to digitally transform – something that is invariably driven by technological talent.


If you’re looking to engage top talent, and you want to do it the right way, get in touch to learn how Third Republic really do source and engage differently.