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How the New Technology World is Set to Transform the Way We Recruit Talent

The world is changing

There is a digital storm brewing, facilitated by innovations in mobile, social platforms, data science, and cloud computing. Technology has transformed our way of life, from how we communicate, to how we travel, cook, book taxis and work. 

Every industry has been impacted in one way shape or form, each racing to adapt to the new digital world. Staying abreast of the change is the new corporate battleground, and top of the agenda for every CIO and CEO worldwide.

Eileen Smith, program director in IDC's Customer Insights & Analysis Group highlights

“changing competitive landscapes, and consumerism are disrupting businesses and creating an imperative to invest in Digital Transformation…In 2017, global organisations will spend $1.2 trillion on these initiatives."


The digital economy disrupting the recruitment industry 

Pervasive Digital Transformation will see businesses become more efficient, responsive and customer-focused. As businesses change for the better and adapt, the recruitment industry is now also following this path.

Why? Because people are living their lives differently.

The world of work, the workforce and the workplace bear little resemblance to its past. There’s a diverse, four-generation workforce for the first time, accelerated globalization and digitization, and a limited supply of skilled people with an unprecedented choice of how, and for whom they work. The very nature of how we communicate in a digital world is changing consumer behaviour which in turn is changing candidate behaviour, including the way these in-demand professionals increasingly manage their careers.

All of this creates a perfect storm for recruiters as exploding skills gaps in STEM combine with a fundamental shift in the way people are increasingly looking for work and interacting with one another, forcing the industry into a new era of talent acquisition.

To date, there have been three eras of recruitment:

  • The first was focused on utilising primitive sourcing tools such as the phone, fax and print media.
  • The second era of recruitment was characterised by advances in technology (the internet and email) – and its abuse. The ‘art’ was replaced by databases and the promise of scale, leaving a generation of recruitment professionals to abuse email and LinkedIn to send thousands of identical, poorly written messages to databases.
  • Over the last four or five years however, we have moved into the third era, the digital era. Seeing the resurgence of the skilled communicator of the first era - the relationship-builder and cultivator of networks – and combining it with a new set of skills based on marketing and new recruitment technologies. 

Many recruiters though, either in-house or agency, are yet to make the transition to this third era. They still typically use out-of-date and increasingly ineffective methods to source talent.



The new technology platform driving digital recruitment transformation

So how exactly is marketing linked to recruitment? You need only to look as far as the tools used by modern day marketers, and their successes, to understand why aspects are being taken and adapted to recruiting.

Known as MarTech, marketers are using new tools to reach increasingly fragmented audiences.

Recruitment is going through the same change: coined as ‘RecTech’, it comprises of a cutting edge eco-system of tools, apps, and digital platforms that cover a staggering array of functionalities.

Leveraged properly, in-house recruitment teams can drastically improve how they source, engage and assess talent and it will significantly improve performance ratios such as time and cost per hire. We are calling it the 3rd platform of recruitment technology.




What does modern recruitment look like in the digital era?

The modern recruitment industry (The 3rd era) is a fusion between traditional recruiting skills, marketing, and technology. Operating successfully within it requires excellent inter-personal skills, a marketers mind-set, and the savviness of a digital native.

In terms of the technology, the new tools, apps, and platforms which make up the 3rd technology platform are centred around sourcing and engaging talent, driving recruiter efficiencies, improving the Candidate Experience (CX), and assessing candidates more objectively.  

New digital skills are necessary because the 3rd platform is vastly different to what came before it: Email, LinkedIn, job boards, and CV databases. Candidate expectations have changed too. Growing digital footprints mean candidates are increasingly sitting back and waiting for the right opportunities to come to them. The art of recruitment in the Digital Era is now how to engage talent.

What RecTech does, is bring together social, mobile, video, apps, platforms, data science, VR, and AI to empower talent acquisition teams to improve the way they engage talent by providing a richer CX. 

New apps and tools can personalise the way recruiters engage talent to peak interest whilst helping to overcome issues around brand and trust.   

The more innovative ideas and solutions are centred around cognitive technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), machine-to-machine learning, robotic process automation, natural language processing, predictive algorithms, and self-learning.

Chatbot’s are becoming popular too, including the recently launched Olivia, which guides candidates through an application process with sequenced questions.

IBM’s Watson is also a great example of these cognitive capabilities. It has moved into the space in three key areas:

Machine learning platforms that rank the efficacy of candidates; social listening for an organization’s and competitors’ publicly available scores on Glassdoor, Twitter and newsfeeds; and a tool that matches candidates to jobs through a “fit score” based on career experiences and skills.

Such technologies take data that already exists, aggregate it, and then apply advanced cognitive capabilities to deliver information that can be used by recruiters to gauge whether a candidate is suitable or not.

The Third Platform for recruitment technology is still forming but this is how we see the eco-system evolving, illustrated through a hype curve that provides a view of the maturity, adoption and business application of specific technologies:





As was the case with MarTech and its impact on marketing, the recruitment industry is  undergoing a similar digital transformation.

New methods of sourcing talent, learning advanced marketing skills, and becoming digital natives are all a part of this change. Every recruiter, in-house or agency, is set to go through a process that we call Recruitment Transformation: going from mainstream and old fashioned, to modern, forward thinking recruiters by understanding that the market for talent is changing as society goes digital.



This new RecTech platform plays host to a number of next generation recruitment technologies which, when combined correctly, have the power to help internal recruitment teams adapt to changing candidate behaviours as we enter the new Digital Age of recruitment.  

It’s time to take advantage of the digital era and drive recruitment transformation into your talent acquisition strategies. Sitting back and continuing to use traditional 2nd Era methods that don’t match candidate behaviour will make success harder to come by. Conversely, those taking advantage of the plethora of new tools, apps and platforms will be light years ahead. By training in-house teams to have an eye for these new methods, in-house recruitment leaders  will be able to quickly pick out those recruiters who have a flare for modern day recruitment, and those who don’t.

Leveraging modern recruitment methodologies by investing in new recruitment technologies will provide you with a significant competitive advantage for bringing the right talent into your organisation.