Bersin – Tech innovations in recruitment
|Bersin By HRM Asia is a quarterly column, written exclusively by global HR industry analyst Josh Bersin.|
One of the most important things companies do is hire people, yet hiring is still a bit of a black art. Most company recruiters look at a candidate’s job history, they call references, they administer assessments, and they bring the strongest candidates in for interviews.
And despite all this effort, HR leaders tell me they still make hiring mistakes as much as 25% of the time.
Why? Much of what makes for a successful hire is not reflected in a résumé or uncovered in a typical interview.
Factors such as a candidate’s cognitive abilities, their cultural alignment, and the fit between a job seeker’s ambitions and the opportunities actually offered by the company all contribute to hiring success.
The research we completed earlier this year at Bersin by Deloitte found that the highest-performing companies are 90% more likely to use these “non-résumé” factors in selection – more proof of how complex hiring has become.
|“Most research on the future of work shows a steady increase in demand for personal communication skills, creative problem-solving skills, and what has always been called “learning agility” – a candidate’s ability and willingness to learn.|
And this trend is getting stronger. Most research on the future of work shows a steady increase in demand for personal communication skills, creative problem-solving skills, and what has always been called “learning agility” – a candidate’s ability and willingness to learn.
These are all things not visible in education pedigree or job history.
It turns out that artificial intelligence is well suited to address this recruitment problem.
Vendors are now successfully applying intelligent algorithms to create tests, simulations, and even analyse video job interviews to make hiring more effective. Here are some examples:
The fast-growing company Pymetrics has developed a series of cognitive and neurological tests that are fun and easy to take, but have direct statistical correlation to roles in engineering, sales, and customer service.
The technology can assess up to 90 different traits through these tests, and it virtually eliminates subconscious bias and discrimination in hiring.
Imbellus has developed simulation-based assessments that are now used by McKinsey to evaluate the problem-solving skills of new hires. I’ve tried the simulations and found them to be quite mind-bending and interesting. They clearly test complex thinking in ways that go far beyond the established tests.
HireVue, one of the pioneers in video interviewing, can now capture more than a million meaningful data elements about a job candidate in each minute of video. The resulting data can tell managers things about candidates’ truthfulness and confidence in answering questions.
And PhenomPeople, has built a recruitment system that looks like a career portal but is augmented by artificial intelligence. Candidate communications are targeted the way marketers target ads, and the behaviour of candidates (internal and external) is tracked to help personalise the job search experience.
Of course, a major risk in all this is that the AI somehow introduces bias into these systems. Vendors are working hard to make sure their offerings are unbiased, transparent, and safe. In most cases, companies test these systems with pools of high-performing candidates first, to make sure the algorithms don’t inadvertently reproduce bias from the old “human style” of interviewing.
While job seekers may find AI-based recruiting a bit creepy, it’s important to help them understand that no one – the business or the job seeker – benefits from a hiring mistake. These tools can actually make the life of a job seeker easier as well, since a candidate won’t be as dependent on that make-or-break job interview.
I’ll keep monitoring this space as it grows, but right now I’m very bullish. After years of studying the world of assessments as an analyst, I see a step-change in value here. And since hiring is the most important thing we do as leaders, this is an area where HR technology can really help a company outperform.
|Josh Bersin will be headlining the first-ever HR Festival Asia on May 8 and 9 this year, as brought to you by the combined experience of HR Technology Conference & Exposition (US) and HR Summit (Asia).
Drawing on data gathered from Asia and throughout the globe, he’ll explain how the workforce is changing in this part of the world, and what that means for employers.
For more information, visit www.hrfestivalasia.com.