Add a human element to the automated process, and uncover the stars!
Sure, automated recruitment software can potentially reduce the time it takes you to find suitable candidates for open positions. And yes, it can also offer keyword searching, which enables you to shortlist resumes and candidates more efficiently. But, and this is a big one, a lot of companies, especially smaller businesses that do not have extensive HR departments, end up relying too heavily on this type of software, and miss out on potential star hires who may not know how to write resumes to their best advantage.
Over reliance on automated software is a major problem in a lot of business areas. While recruitment software does have its uses, it should be incorporated into an overall recruitment strategy, and not used as the principal tool for finding, vetting, and recruiting new candidates.
Modern recruitment strategies tend to adopt a relational element. Candidates, recruiters, and businesses may spend time getting to know one another even before a recruitment drive or application process. This time might be eliminated by over reliance on recruitment software. Automated software may not send out any type of rejection. Even if your automated software does send a response to candidates, it won’t be personalized. An impersonal response can easily lead to a breakdown in the very human relationships businesses strive to achieve. Setting up a chat with passive candidates using a chat recruitment software like Brazen can open up communication with candidates, rather than close it down.
Automation eliminates outliers
Automated recruitment software relies heavily on the use of very specific keywords. The software will scan CVs and resumes, looking for those keywords. Employers can search for keywords related to the specific post, to attributes that they are looking for, qualifications that they have, or for any other relevant keywords. For a candidate who knows how to use it, this kind of search can be successful.
Looking for general keywords means that HR or recruiters may be ignoring outliers; people who use different keywords than those that you include. These can be people with a unique educational background or experience. Keywords tend to skip these unusual candidates altogether, and you miss out on potentially amazing hires.
Parsing software may not recognize unusual formats
In the same way that automated software ignores CVs that do not use recognized keywords, it may have the same negative effect with CVs that do not follow recognized formats.
In a lot of industries and sectors, there are certain CV formats that are expected, but not all candidates will meet these expectations. Some candidates will use uniquely formatted CVs to grab attention or to ensure that specific information comes across in their application. Automated software may struggle with some of these uniquely formatted documents, which means that you could miss out on the perfect candidate because they tried to do things differently.
Poor software setup causes problems
A lot of the problems associated with automated recruitment software stems from the user and how they set the software up. Unless a user is experienced with this kind of software, errors are likely to occur.
One of the most common setup problems is the inclusion of keywords that are too generic. Adding a generic keyword like “IT”, for example, could mean that all applications will pass as having relevant keywords, eliminating no candidates, and making the software largely useless.
Generic keywords may also have the reverse effect. The best candidates will include very specific information in a CV customized to the available position. They will be less likely to include “IT” as a keyword, and more likely to include, for example, “PHP development.” In this case, generic keyword use leaves you with candidates that have sent out cookie cutter CVs, and may even remove those that have the specific type of experience you are looking for.
Candidates could manipulate the hiring process
Candidates that understand how recruitment software, and the recruitment process, works, may be able to effectively manipulate the software by tailoring their CV to the software’s automated processes.
Candidates that do tailor their CV to ensure that they pass the software selection stage are more inclined to include false information on their CV. They may exaggerate experience, include only information that the software wants to see, and potentially even lie about the level of experience or qualifications that they have.
Let’s face it – the ability to manipulate recruitment software in this way is unlikely to be a desirable skill for which you are hiring!
Combine recruitment software with other recruitment methods
Manually checking CVs is a time-consuming process. Combining automated software with manual checking and other personnel recruitment techniques means that you can eliminate some of the candidates who do not fit the bill, while ensuring that you don’t miss out on any potentially great employees.
Another alternative is to use a recruitment specialist. A recruitment specialist will combine the use of automated processes and human checks. They will be able to identify potential candidates, and can either provide you with a shortlist for interviews, or they can find you the perfect candidate for any open position.
So, human or robot, or some combination of the two? Now that you know the problems, you decide the solutions!
Matt Jackson is a freelance copywriter, offering content writing and guest blogging services to clients around the world, and in any industry. He also loves to write on marketing and technology topics. Follow him on Twitter.