We all use our gut instinct every day – that subjective feeling that guides our decisions, whether it’s when considering a purchase, relationship or business deal it’s always there to silently guide you. I not only believe that gut instinct is necessary, I think it is crucial especially in Recruitment. Everything might stack up on a CV, and the candidate may even be saying everything to tick the boxes, but if you have that feeling in the bottom of your stomach that something is wrong, then steer clear. Even if the evidence is pointing to yes, trust your gut instinct.
I know quite a few people who would quite openly admit that they are not great decision makers, and they don’t always trust their instincts. I believe that not only is this something that develops over time as you learn and grow as a recruiter, but also something that can be given a helping hand. You are not going to generate much of a gut instinct from solely reading CVs. So think about using some of these methods:
A good starting point is to give the candidate a call and to speak with them on the phone. This can tell you a lot and is useful if you have a lot of applicants and will not have time to meet with all of them. It may be as simple as asking them to talk you through their CV and why they applied for the role.
The ideal scenario would be a face to face meeting/interview. This is the best way to get a real sense of the candidate as you can pick up on their verbal as well as non-verbal cues. Body language is hugely important in making a judgment on the suitability of a candidate for an organisation. However, face to face is not always possible or necessary when there are technologies such as Skype available. So if a face to face is not convenient, consider offering a video interview, or have a short one automated upon application. Having this gives you more information (including their body language, tone, presentation etc) on every applicant allowing your gut instincts to be more accurate with less time invested.
We are advocates of psychometric profiling. Not the archaic tests that took hours to complete – but the more modern and sophisticated tests that give a fantastic insight into the individual’s personality. They are great for flagging particular personality traits and behaviours that may trigger that gut instinct and prompt further conversation in specific areas.
Simply looking at a CV is not going to be sufficient if you want to be a successful recruiter. You would be doing your clients and your candidates a disservice. However, we are not saying that you can employ one of the methods above and trigger your gut instinct and make better decisions. What we are saying is that you need to use one or a combination of techniques that work for you. Taking to recruitment with this in mind will allow you to harness your emotional intuition and to make better and more informed decisions based on instinct as well as presented facts about an individual.
If we see someone struggling to cross a road, for example, most of us are falling over ourselves to help. However many of us lack this sense of empathy in our working lives, and I would argue this is particularly true in recruitment. Which got me thinking about how we got here, why it is so damaging for the industry, and how we can start to change it.
How we got into this mindset is quite easy to answer in my view. Imagine stepping back to a time before the internet, before the telephone, and even before the post. Individuals who were seeking work would approach the employer personally. I expect they would take some time to have a conversation that was worlds away from a list of bullet points on a piece of paper. I am guessing of course – but I imagine there are a higher richness and insight to that exchange. Even if the candidate was not the right person for the job, they probably had an opportunity to discuss their abilities, and where they would need training. It would have been a completely humanised experience – where dismissing somebody’s interest based on one small flaw would be unlikely.
We are now at a point where recruiters can be sifting through hundreds of online job applications in a week. That has quite understandably led to a level of fatigue with the process – candidates who have no relevant experience applying for roles. We are left with a Tinder-style situation where unless a candidate fits the spec explicitly, they are quickly and quite mindlessly ‘swiped to the left’. Surely we are missing some of the best candidates, who perhaps don’t tick every box, but would thrive and excel if given the opportunity to interview.
The high volume of candidate applications paired with an increasingly burdensome workload has made many of us lose our empathy. We busily sort candidates into yes and no, black and white, the binary. Anybody that falls into the grey is more often than not swept up in the NO pile. Why? Because it would involve some consideration and time to pick up the phone and discuss suitability with the candidate – to work out if the grey is an opportunity. When we dismiss those candidates in the middle, we are not only doing them a disservice, but we are also letting down our clients. Because of course, we all know how important employee diversity is for well-functioning teams, and organisational innovation.
You might be wondering where the time is going to come from to be ‘empathetic’ – because it will take more physical and emotional effort. It will come from the places where you can spare it when you realise the benefits of changing the way you approach your candidate search. That is of course not a straightforward answer, but I am confident it is one you will have no issue with when you experience the positive impact of Empathic Recruitment℠.
When the recruitment industry boomed, the best model to ensure you get the best candidates was always a multi-agency and contingency-based approach. The more agencies you had on board, the more connections you could reach out to via these 3rd parties. Each recruiter had their personal networks, and that’s still true. I have a vast network of IT project managers in Bristol. However, times and technology have changed. When any of my contacts find themselves looking for work, they will contact me, but will also be available on social media or easy to find online through job boards.
As soon as anyone applies for one job on any of the available boards, every recruiter with access to it can find you. Social Media is another platform that’s use has grown exponentially for recruiters. You can let anyone who stumbles across your profile by searching using key skills know that you are available. LinkedIn will actually market your profile if you click on the option saying you’re open to opportunities!
When you have multiple agencies working against each other is not a case of widening the net anymore. You create duplicated efforts raising the price of recruitment. If a recruiter fills one in five roles that they work, they have to charge a lot more for the positions they do end up filling. Exclusivity is a simple concept but contingency is so embedded as the way work with agencies. That’s because before the internet and its services were available, it was! The average fill rate for the biggest agencies all of which tend to work on a contingency-based model fills one in five of the roles they work on. I know, I’ve worked for them.
The terms of businesses I’ve made work so the fee is directly in the proportion of how committed a client is. The way business should be! Based on this, I have technology that allows me to simultaneously search every job board and certain social media sites through my own portal. It collates and prioritises the results from each in order of suitability into my platform allowing quick online resourcing. A consolidation of the entire online market in one search, and that’s nearly everyone nowadays!
It also worth mentioning this: If you were looking for opportunities, and there are two jobs of interest, one being advertised by four agencies, the other directly through one, which one would you be more interested in? The assumptions that can come with multiple agencies being on board are generally damaging to your companies profile. Its best to find a good recruiter, be loyal and save yourself some money for a better service. No duplication, no high costs, an absolute no-brainer!
Whether you’re a Recruiter or a Hiring Manager using one, it’s all too common there can be issues in communication or understanding. Sometimes both can feel like one isn’t listening to the other. There’s a variety of factors that can cause this. A good example though is the way agencies pay consultants which can be seen as giving ulterior motives to exaggerate a candidates capabilities. This is an excellent example of how trust can quickly be lost before you’ve even started. More often than not, a recruiter will spend weeks to search, screen and select suitable candidates to fill positions within their clients business.
The expectation to get candidate profiles right can be from a conversation that went along the lines of “I need a Senior Systems Engineer, someone who has, X, Y, Z and I need them to start yesterday. You’ll receive a job description that pops up in your email, and you’re away. This can often be an old job description, with a list of qualities involved in every day working in the position. Many could be picked up very quickly in reality, but it’s something about paper that makes them essential!
Initially, the quicker approach seems to be the better. It’s also where the large and often expensive mistake happens; the unsuitable hire leaving a three-month gap further down the line. Not to mention the time wasted on getting them up to speed with their role.
As a recruiter, you are always left with questions after reading a job description. Why is the position available? Is there room to progress? What plans do the company have and what’s the working environment like? What I’m trying to say is, recruiters, perform better with a more extensive briefing.
Because every role and the environment it’s in is forever changing, the only way to achieve maximum results is to start from scratch. Make a new job description together formed from a consultative conversation with an experienced recruiter. Create a collaborative set of questions to ask based on your newly formed job description. This doesn’t just make the most of every conversation, ensuring well-thought topics are all covered; it also creates a structure cutting out any unintentional bias.
You can speed up this process and screen a considerable number of candidates automatically giving a brief insight into the personality too. Video recruitment allows candidates to create video-based applications answering the set questions made for the role. Both Recruiter and Manager can review each application leaving comments including an overall rating. Candidates can instantly give a first personal impression without having to take time off and travel to interviews too.
Have you ever been in or conducted an interview you knew was a waste of time within the first 5 minutes? Not anymore!
When Employers or Recruiters shortlist applications, they can sometimes be unintentionally biased or unfair. Assumptions made when reading someone’s CV can often be the cause of this. The problem is we can all be unintentionally biased, especially when hiring as it’s a part of human nature.
The less information we have to make decisions, the more of these judgements we’re likely to make. Bias views happen subconsciously most of the time. We’re designed to respond to trends and can be affected by almost anything. This is how ‘stereotypes’ that you find in society are created. Many surveys done say that job seekers consider hiring processes biased for this exact reason. I’ve heard “They said I was over-qualified but they don’t know my situation” too many times.
Video recruitment used properly gives more information and is more transparent. It helps de-bias the opinions made when looking at the paper version of a candidate. It’s also a great way of reminding yourself of candidate’s responses. Video interviews can be replayed to multiple staff members giving you time to analyse along with as many professional opinions as you need. Integrating the team in the process will decrease the chance of any turbulent new hires.
Modern interviews can be unstructured, making candidates more likely to be subject to an unfair process. Candidates can use our automated video application, where they’re asked the same questions in the same order, in the same environment. This creates an equal and accurate experience for everyone. You’re still going to meet these people too. It just gives you more information to decide on who to meet.
We can use algorithms to assess human qualities bypassing assumptions we all fall victim to. The outcome is predicting the right person for each specific position in the business.
Click here to speak with us about our recruitment method.
We are all capable of being unconsciously biased in all areas of life. We make this mistake less often with more information we have though. Using technology can provide a more accurate and fair judgment as well as a better experience for candidates – are your hiring practices up to date?
It can be hard shortlisting potential candidates when you are comparing the CV versions of people. Paper-based processing has its restrictions and is open to manipulation and equally, misinterpretation. Employers will only meet a small selection of candidates even though you can have 50 applications. How you filter these applications for the interview stage is crucial. It seems unnecessary to second guess when technology is forever growing more sophisticated making it possible to counter these problems.
That’s why amongst other emerging technologies, we include an Interactive Video Platform (IVP) tool in our shortlisting process. It allows candidates to submit video responses to automated questions within the original application. This offers employers a greater insight into the suitability of each candidate and can save a significant amount of time for both while increasing the value of the shortlisting data tremendously.
Our IVP is a quick and reliable tool that offers more insight into the ethics of a person, their social capabilities, their personality, their leadership and communication skills all of which are essential when hiring the best candidate for the team.
We still assess information on their CV and it’s often this exercise that inspires some of the further questioning asked in face to face interviews. What an IVP allows you do is quickly get a first impression of someone’s personality. If you have 3 equal CV’s and only one interview slot, this feature will make your life a lot easier! You can also conduct live interviews online and compare these with other applicants and share them with other managers through our platform to ensure you hire the right person for the team, as well as for the job description.
Have you ever had a perfect application on paper only to be disappointed after conducting it? Not anymore!
I’ve noticed a lot of companies are reluctant when hiring graduates. Young people leave university and are often looking for their first professional role. Yet most companies will often only accept candidates with experience. Graduates have so many long-term benefits as well as a lower initial salary and have more to prove. That isn’t always a bad thing! When I see Graduates struggling to get through the door it can be frustrating.
Getting a university degree is liberating, and now this person wants a professional career. Jobs are competitive, so graduates have gratitude when they’re employed, and tends to do well and commit for this reason. The fact they don’t have experience which can seem a disadvantage which also creates a more grateful applicant.
Previous jobs give us experience and skills for new jobs. Some people do not move on and learn new skills, whilst graduates are eager to learn and to improve and adapt your companies habits.
Graduates are familiar with the technology, hardware, and software, (99% of people aged 18 to 24 own a smartphone); this can be a useful consideration when filling a particular role.
Diversity is important and improves innovation and performance when cultures merge and graduates come from all backgrounds and walks of life.
Sometimes overlooking a lack of previous experience is good, focusing on a person’s potential and progression instead is the long-term business model. Recruiting people with particular qualities encourages growth, and you may find someone great to lead your company one day in the future.
There are risks hiring less experienced candidates of course, but there are actually different but comparable risks in hiring anyone and graduates provide technical aptitude and adaptability, as well as valuable characteristics. Its a way of recruiting tomorrow’s talent today and you may just find somebody great.
Empathic Recruitment ℠ allows you access to all of these areas that previously you wouldn’t see within the application process, throwing away talent without even knowing it.
Companies are always looking for technical staff. Whether its software coders, engineers, data scientists, and web designers. It’s hard to find people with strong tech skills, and who also fits your business culture. Most hiring managers and recruiters found it challenging finding workers with tech skills as it is. To find someone who also has the personality and social competence for that particular team a challenge.
Having a lack of tech talent in your business can damage revenue without you knowing, and will always slow down development. Coders, software engineers, data scientists, and web designers are more needed in this “tech-bubble-society” than ever.
The technology field is broad and every company works differently, so finding an absolutely perfect match is unlikely. However, finding someone with the majority of skills but with strong social capabilities isn’t. Having a team fit leads to new recruits quickly inheriting the skills necessary from their colleagues.
Empathic Recruitment ℠ uses video recruitment software to gain information needed to make informed hiring decisions, gathering information on personality traits, work ethic and social suitability compared to paper-based data processing, allowing hiring managers to meticulously shortlist.
By seeing people directly, you automatically assess their personality and social skills and are more likely emphasise with their story as you’re more likely to know if it’s genuine. It a allows us to use our ‘gut instincts’ and intuition which can inform us when something isn’t ‘quite right’ about that person for this position.
Recruitment Technology is growing fast and can save a lot of time when used correctly. You do still need a human involved to get the most of technology. Automating recruitment completely is impossible, for now! Finding people with suitable skills for a role is one thing and AI allows us to automate that pretty well. Finding someone who fits a particular business is a lot more complicated.
With the recruitment process as it stands, matching these are often a complete lottery. It’s an especially important consideration when avoiding a low retention of staff. So why is phase one of shortlisting based purely on CV’s when you can’t see these traits on paper? It’s always worth establishing genuine connections with as many applicants as you can in order to find the right stuff which simply isn’t possible when looking at a CV.
Whoever you hire, will not only contribute to representing your company to your customers and other prospects, but they could potentially contribute to positive or negative change internally too. Negativity or unhappiness can be as contagious as a laugh or positivity in an office environment.
Video recruitment allows you to have a snapshot of every person that has shown an interest in your business. They don’t have to answer questions on the spot and can do so without travel. It allows you to compare candidates more easily. Boolean search is a Recruiters searching language of choice. There are huge developments in this now that allows searches to think for themselves.
Our objective is to change the paper-based recruitment practices into a process that focuses on human connection and emotional intelligence. When a candidate’s individual skills and qualifications match your job, it doesn’t mean they will match your team, direct report or overall company culture. We called the methodology of focusing on this Empathic Recruitment ℠.
We use artificially intelligent searching software to make sure we reach out to as many suitable candidates as possible!