The recruitment industry is broken and is no longer suitable for its purpose. I will speak specifically in relation to technology, since that is what I am familiar with, but anecdotally I hear reports in other sectors of horror stories. It is up to us that hiring managers help you change it or even eliminate it completely.
Let me explain why.
Last year I interviewed a software engineer in Sydney. He explained how he had spent two weeks collectively in Silicon Valley interviewing and going through a series of tests on four major technology giants. He left him exhausted as he had to accommodate them all in a short period of time. You cannot expect anyone to be in top form after the fourth personal barbecue in the morning.
Coincidentally, the developer interviewed us to work on a new platform we were building to improve developer hiring. (If you are familiar with Laddr, let me introduce the rest of this post by saying that while Laddr aims to solve some of these problems, there are better solutions.)
To give you an idea of the size of the problem, there will be an estimated 26 million software developers worldwide by 2022. But that's not enough. The World Economic Forum highlighted our profession as one that will continue to be requested, since forecasts estimate that 1 million programming jobs will be vacant for next year in the United States alone. In Washington DC we represent more than 6% of the workforce. However, despite our growing number, the approach to how we are hired has not changed in a decade, before mobile optimization was standard.
It takes an average of 40.8 days to hire a software development engineer. For us that is the period of time for most projects. Therefore, it is safe to assume that opportunities are being lost.
Collectively, we need to eliminate some barriers. Here are some ideas of how:
1. Eliminate bias
It greatly increases your possible group of talents (not to mention that it strengthens your team) when you eliminate bias from your hiring system. Whether gender bias has been included in your job description without knowing it, or subconscious bias during the selection phase, we already have the tools to eliminate it. And before thinking, "Oh, we don't need that; we don't have prejudices," read this and other research on the subject.
Chrome extensions like Unbias can help me hide names and profile photos by looking at LinkedIn or GitHub. And to write that impartial job role, try Kat Matfield's Gender Decoder online platform. Atlassian also recently announced a tool to help HR teams with diversity, arguing that demographically homogeneous teams lack effectiveness.
There have been headlines in recent years where even algorithms are being accused of bias, where coding has favored male candidates. It has helped new companies like Pymetrics to obtain funds with platforms that combine artificial intelligence and neuroscience to increase diversity in contracting in companies such as Unilever and Accenture.
2. Know what to download
Do you need to control each item or can you introduce automation that saves time? Leaving aside rhetorical questions, the use of chatbots to answer simple questions has already shown that it frees up time for customer service teams. However, in recruitment it also means that candidates looking outside working hours, that is, most people, can get the answers they want, when they need them. What should hopefully increase the applications.
However, more people applying do not help if they are not properly filtered, as up to 60 percent of applicants will not be suitable for the position offered. Machine learning platforms can do the necessary filtering (the Ideal Canadian team is one of those platforms, but there are others). However, algorithms must be carefully designed so that they do not filter out promising candidates who have a non-traditional background. One approach, which will ensure that outliers are not ruled out based on the lack of a university degree, for example, is to focus on technological tests that reproduce real-life scenarios. By creating these contextual problems instead of the theoretical ones, you can have a better idea of someone's transferable skills. Then, bots can also schedule interviews, at other times undermine part of the interview.
3. Give more power to applicants
Reversing the hiring model, so that companies can directly find previously examined technology professionals, are platforms like talent.io in Europe. It offers users the opportunity to describe their ideal role. Companies are then invited to make propaganda-based approaches. Personal information, such as name, location, age, can remain anonymous through platforms that include Nottx, proof that the current model can be reversed while protecting users from discrimination.
This may only be from the perspective of my engineer, but having to complete a separate technical test for each function I request feels unnecessary. And making applicants feel in their office is not optimizing the time of either party. HackerRank allows individual skills and competencies to be tested remotely. In fact, there are other platforms that are incorporating these tests into the profile that users create, similar to an online portfolio for creativity. A contextual test to rule them all. Congratulations, your personal future will thank you.
I hope that we will soon see that users are paid to perform customized technical tests, since this information could be used to provide information about the industry in general.
4. Be transparent
One feature that I have not yet seen, but I would like, is the ability of an employer to see all the other competitors with whom a candidate is interviewed. This should provide the catalyst to ensure that the great candidates do not escape. Almost 70 percent of job seekers in all areas believe that response times can be improved during interviews. It is not surprising. Most wait more than 40 days for an answer. Some people could have completed four project assignments at that time.
As the workforce of the future moves towards a person who is increasingly dependent on contingent workers, speed is the potential differentiator to hire equipment and employees alike.
5. Leave your recruiters
Without wanting to be the precursor to fatality for the recruitment industry, there are ways in which the role is already changing. And I haven't even discussed the use of video in the stages of discovery, interview and in the role.
Direct conversations between employers and candidates will lubricate the process and result in happier campers on both sides of this equation. So, recruiters, the question is, how do you add value? To you.
Vaibhav Namburi is the founder of the emerging technology agency Five2One.