“People Who Need People…”
“… are the luckiest people in the world.” — Barbra Streisand
The luckiest people in the world? Really? Somehow, I don’t think Babs was singing about recruiters…
Last week, we tackled the subject of robots here on the Jibe Blog. Our Director of Product Alex Hunsucker made the case that we don’t have to fear new technologies in recruiting and HR, so long as those technologies are built with a “people-first” mentality, ensuring that these new solutions being brought to market are developed in such a user-friendly way that the recruiter is empowered to perform their job even better, while the technology works in the background.
Today, I wanted to keep the focus on people. We are, after all, in the business of human resources. Instead of looking at the recruiter this time however, I wanted to focus on the other side of the hiring equation: The Job Seeker.
Jibe just signed on as a sponsor once again for the Talent Board’s annual Candidate Experience Awards, the CandEs, We didn’t think twice when the offer came through, as candidate experience is ultimately at the heart of everything we do. When our crack team of engineers develops new solutions, we don’t just have the recruiter in mind, but also the ultimate end-user: the candidate.
Searching for a job is consistently ranked as one of the most stressful activities an individual can go through, right up there with death in the family, divorce and other traumatic and life-changing events. And yet, the majority of companies still add to that stress by putting up roadblocks, black holes and landmines throughout the application process. Whether forcing a mobile job seeker back to their desktop by not enabling mobile apply, or simply losing a candidates information and making them undergo the entire process again.
I’m sure we all have frustrating anecdotes that we can pull from our own job-seeking experience. I sure do. Prior to joining Jibe, I tried to apply for a position with an unnamed but very well known financial institution. In the middle of the application process, my information simply disappeared and I received an automated apology but no explanation or recourse about what to do next. I started over, got nearly all the way through, and then it happened again. The robot said “sorry”, but that was it. I was done. I moved on in my search and thankfully connected with Jibe. I still carry a negative impression of that financial firm in my mind, one that I had respected and been excited about prior to that poor experience as a candidate. The employer brand risk associated with a poor candidate experience is real, and the damage done can be fatal to attracting top talent.
Now, if the ATS had offered me some wine, maybe I would’ve stuck with it a bit longer…
Liz Ryan had a great piece up on Forbes last week titled, “How Technology Killed Recruiting.” In it, Liz bemoans the fact that today’s recruiting solutions have sacrificed candidate experience in a big way. And, similar to the case we’ve made here, she calls for an intensified focus on humanizing the hiring and job-seeking experience.
“The ATS vendors that will survive to 2020 and beyond will be the ones that figure out how to humanize the selection process. Luckily, it isn’t complicated. An ATS that were oriented toward engaging job-seekers rather than intimidating and repelling them would be a good start. Once we make contact with a job-seeker, that contact should be human.”
Technology doesn’t have to get in the way of this happening. In fact, it should enable a more humanized hiring process. Engaging with candidates where they are — mobile devices and social networks — and streamlining the application process by using analytics to examine the full hiring funnel and identify where the process can be improved, are but a few ways technology can actually help, rather than hinder, the candidate experience.
Before finishing this up, we’d like to take this opportunity to once again congratulate all the winners of the 2013 CandEs, including Jibe clients Accenture, Chesapeake, Enterprise, GM, Walmart and Wells Fargo. Thanks to the importance these organizations place on improving candidate experience, and aligning with Jibe to help them use technology to better the hiring process, these firms stand out.
We fully expect these Jibe clients — and many, many more — to be on this roster again in 2014. Congrats and keep up the good work.