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How Digitising HR is the way Forward for a Candidate Experience

The Oil and Gas supply chain is going through an exciting digital transformation, which is loosely referred to in industry as Oil and Gas 4.0.  Inevitably, inertia is driving this digital revolution right across the sector’s business support services too. Talent Management, particularly recruitment operations, have seen the recent and very timely arrival of digital technologies that, if used well, promise to revitalize a somewhat frustrating modern candidate experience.

This research from the Talent Board shows that the candidate experience is falling short in several ways, the main frustrations of which are outlined below:

1. initial job seeker interest not acknowledged and/or no definitive closure provided

2. inconsistent communication from pre-application to on-boarding

3. not asked for candidate feedback; employers don’t seem to care about candidate experience

4. no expectations set about the recruiting process for candidates from application to offer

5. lack of perceived fairness about the process

6. not given the opportunity to share why their knowledge, skills and experience deserves consideration for the jobs to which they have applied 

The good news is that there are many current and emerging digital technologies that can address these issues and revitalize the candidate experience. 

AI-Powered Recruitment ChatBot

One of the most game-changing candidate experience technologies has to be the recruitment chatbot.  Unilever are perhaps one of the most high profile users of this technology, having just gone live with Una, their custom built, AI powered hiring chatbot in 16 countries. Una can understand 95% of adult language and can provide answers and information in a natural language style, and carry out transactions, such as scheduling interviews, screening candidates and following up. 

Una offers a 24/7 virtual recruitment representative that has replaced phone numbers and email addresses which offers candidates an instant response, answers, and in-demand information. 

Through the use of these digital hiring chat-bots an organization can transform their tired out unresponsive hiring process into a highly responsive, informative, multi-language, answer-rich and digitized candidate experience.

Automated 1st level screening

Research shows that candidates are frustrated at the feeling of being blindly rejected without being given a chance to show their worth. This is because employers simply don’t have the resources to personally first-level screen everyone. In fact, research shows that recruiters on average spend 60 seconds reviewing a CV before rejecting it. This rushed approach to screening can be mitigated with hiring chat-bots who now have the ability to more considerately screen candidates, while engaging in naturalistic conversations with candidates.  While not the same as a human, these interactive chat bots give candidates a chance to express themselves.

So, even if candidates are rejected without an interview they feel they have had the opportunity to share why they deserve consideration. Its not perfect, but arguably represents an improvement in candidate experience over the altogether more dismissive approach that is currently relied upon.

Automated Communication

You don’t have to go all in with AI chat-bots to digitally upgrade your hiring process and enhance candidate experience. By using and configuring a best-of-breed applicant tracking system (ATS) you can automate your hiring communication and eliminate the frustration of unresponsive hiring processes. 

For example when setup correctly, these ATS tools allow you to prepare templated emails responses that can be automatically emailed at various trigger points. With this technology, acknowledgement emails, rejection emails, interview invite letters and candidate feedback can be fully or at least partially automated. Your candidate experience will be greatly enhanced as applicants will feel properly communicated with throughout the hiring process, despite very little manual effort from hiring staff.

Employee-generated Content

The Talent Board survey outlined the importance of employee-generated content to modern candidates. Fortunately, digital technologies have the ability to enhance the candidate experience in this area.  The report showed that candidates want to learn in advance about:  the company culture, a typical day on the job and employee attitudes, but they want to hear it from employees not recruiters or managers. VivaHR is one of many ATS that are working to enhance the candidate experience through their ‘Culture Profiles’ which can be accessed by applicants and which are full of videos and employee testimonials, telling them about the culture.

The Talent Board report also showed that candidates are not using Facebook or Twitter to learn about employers and opportunities, but they are using Linked-In and Glassdoor and so employers should see these platforms as an extension of their candidate experience and ensure that there are opportunities for candidates to connect with your business on these digital platforms. This will enhance candidate experience

It is clear that digitising HR can bring many benefits to the candidate experience. By incorporating digital technologies such as AI chatbots, employee-generated digital content, AI-driven interviewing and automated communication, in particular, you can build a much more responsive, enriching, informative, and rewarding candidate experience.

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