Technology in Recruitment: Are We Losing the Personal Touch?

6th April 2018

You’ve probably read the rash of articles heralding Artificial Intelligence as the HR department’s saviour when it comes to screening candidates in a non-biased and more time efficient fashion. You’ve probably also read the panic stricken posts claiming robots are taking over the world! What you may or may not have heard of is blockchain – a new technology which had a huge impact on the financial sector thanks to virtual currency Bitcoin.

Blockchain allows you to track a transaction using a remote computer network, operating without central authorisation. Its selling point is that because the ‘ledger’ used to log a transaction isn’t stored in any one place, counterfeit transactions and fraud are eliminated.

The Blockchain and HR

It’s currently only theoretical that blockchain will be implemented in recruitment but A.I. is already making waves within HR. Additionally many industry insiders are already trumpeting the death of the traditional CV: a study found that networking, as opposed to the resume, was a more integral part of the job seeking experience.

These leaps forward are why recruiters shouldn’t ignore blockchain technology. After all, a huge, time consuming aspect of hiring new staff is verifying the information on a candidate’s CV. With blockchain, the remote network could act as a database (i.e. the ledger) and verification tool by storing candidate data such as qualifications, skills, education, and employment history. This would allow interviewers to concentrate on soft skills, personality, and a fit with the company’s culture.

Clearly this is a more efficient and cost effective way of hiring candidates. But does it provide a positive experience for the candidate? Would not having any human contact make a prospect actually WANT to work for the organisation in question?

The Personal Touch

Look at the 21-year-old graduate who applied for 55 jobs, garnered 15 interviews – but didn’t have a single human interaction with any of his potential employers. He also raised the issue of automated rejection letters, stating that just 10% of companies gave him any feedback. If a jobseeker has made it to the interview stage, only to be rejected, surely it’s fair to let them know the areas they need to improve upon?

So how can HR departments ensure that the talent they select for interview is left with a positive impression of the company and the desire to work there?

Companies need to save time and cost but injecting humanity into the experience is crucial. How about ensuring candidates have at least one face to face interview with a manager? Why not follow up unsuccessful interviews with a short, yet constructive, email to let someone know where they can improve? After all, whether a candidate is successful or not, you want them to walk away thinking “Wow – that seems like a great company to work for!”