Data Driven Recruitment : What's Holding HR Back?

Posted by Kate Smedley on 27 May 2016

Data driven recruitment is a given for successful talent management but for the most part, UK employers remain wary of fully embracing it. While HR recognises the potential of big data and people analytics, concerns over a lack of understanding or in-house expertise are often the biggest barriers to getting started in this key area.

Making the first step towards people analytics with data driven recruitment is long overdue. The following reasons alone demonstrate why:-

  • One in three people are in the wrong job, based on figures provided by the Office Of National Statistics.
  • Job satisfaction in the UK is at its lowest for two years.
  • The productivity gap continues to grow.

Issues with hiring

The majority of employers don’t plan their hiring needs in advance. When a vacancy arises most businesses revert to a standard practice of selecting candidates based on criteria such as qualifications, social background, people who they believe are like them and ‘gut feel’. This hiring ‘strategy’ is usually supported by manual recruitment practices, leading to delays in recruitment, a poor candidate experience and qualified applicants withdrawing from the process.

We’ve previously explored the issue of so-called algorithm aversion in HR and argued against relying on a subjective approach which excludes any use of analytics but businesses remain reluctant to commit to digital technology. The CBI ranked the UK at 14th globally for its level of digital adoption.

What’s holding HR back?

HR appears to be wary of ‘getting it wrong’ so remains entrenched in manual systems and consumed by administrative tasks.

The good news for data averse businesses is that people analytics is still in its infancy. Deloitte’s Global Capital Trends Survey 2016 found that only 8% of companies feel they are fully capable of developing predictive models, although this is double the level reported in 2015. The number that feel ‘ready or somewhat ready’ for analytics, however, now stands at nearly a third (32%). Time is running out for HR to catch up.

HR managers at major organisations use people analytics to work out key issues such as where their best hires come from, who is a potential future leader and identify bad hires. If your turnover rate is high your company will soon gain a reputation as an organisation where people don’t stay for long; the benefits are clear.

As your business makes its first step into people analytics with data driven recruitment, keep in mind the following points:-

Be aware of bad data

HR needs buy-in from company stakeholders to succeed with data. Quality of information is more important than quantity. If the quality of data is inaccurate or incomplete, results will fail to align with business goals. Start with measurable metrics that show a clear benefit. The ability to assess how many of your new hires stay with your organisation beyond a year is a good place to begin, given the ONS statistics quoted above.

Automation is an asset

Say goodbye to lost CVs, candidates who aren’t acknowledged or prolonged application processes that frustrate talent. Automating basic elements of your hiring process frees up HR’s time to focus on structured interviews.

Turn people into successful hires not numbers

One of the biggest barriers to investment in data driven recruitment is the concern that people will be turned into ‘numbers’ when the opposite is true. Without data, HR will continue to make subjective decisions and the jobs mismatch will persist. Data provides insight into problematic areas, forcing HR to review its talent acquisition strategy and fine tune candidate selection criteria.

Apply what you learn

An integrated applicant tracking system provides information on the effectiveness of your careers site and social media feeds as it tracks the journey of each candidate. Insight gained from that data enables the optimisation of the entire candidate journey. Analysis of the data helps HR to amend job posts and assess which content and adverts are the most effective. If your recruitment analytics reveal a job post that failed to attract qualified candidates try subtle adjustments such as changing the time you post (11am on a weekday is the most effective time for job applications according to research) or include more searchable keywords.

Progress at a pace that’s right for your business

Start with recruitment software that requires minimal training, is scalable and provides recruitment analytics that your business can use. Data provided by HR technology informs strategy enabling HR to focus on the issues of employee engagement, staff turnover and productivity – and make better hiring decisions.

People analytics has the potential to transform your talent acquisition success. Data driven recruitment is your first step towards it. Start with scalable recruitment software used by some of the world’s leading organisations. Contact Advorto today to begin your 30 day free trial.

You might also like to read:-

The Rise Of The Robots : Why HR Needs To Embrace Technology To Survive

5 Strategies To Interrupt Unconscious Bias In Your Hiring Process

Topics: Rants

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