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December 18, 2019 | Joveo | Blogs

The Augmented Recruiter

Rahul Chaki, JoveoX (Innovation Lab)

Winning the right talent can be as rewarding as uncovering a gem that others have overlooked. But achieving that requires carefully crafting out a recruitment strategy comprising of job advertisement, sourcing, and screening, among other things. Though the world is moving towards an era where cars can park themselves, recruiters still find themselves manually optimizing advertisement strategy or hassling with thousands of applicants’ resumes.

Traditional Recruitment

The majority of a recruiter’s tasks fall into two buckets. First, top of the funnel tasks like sourcing (brand awareness/ job advertisement/candidate discovery and rediscovery), screening (resume qualification/ pre-screening/assessment), and scheduling (interviews, candidate engagement). These end up taking 70-80% of a recruiter’s time. Second, every recruiter needs to nurture relationships with candidates, determine culture fit, build relationships with hiring managers, think about capacity planning, and broader strategy.  

If you are familiar with Pareto’s Principle( 80/20 rule) and  Eisenhower Matrix (Urgent-Important box), it’s easy to see that the first category tasks fall into the 2nd (Important/Not Urgent) and 3rd (Unimportant/Urgent) quadrant of the matrix. At the same time, it consumes approximately 80% of the time while delivering 20% of the total value. 

Let’s take an example. Each corporate job offer attracts about 250 resumes. If we assume a recruiter takes 10 seconds to scan a resume, that’s more than 40 minutes or 8% of a working day spent on screening resumes for just one job. Now imagine a company like Amazon, which can have upwards of 30,000 jobs open, or a company like Infosys, which can receive more than 2 million applications in a year. That’s a tremendous amount of time and money to spend on just screening of resumes, don’t you think? Moreover, 10 seconds might be enough to scan a resume, but is it enough to select or eliminate one objectively.

Let’s take another example. One of the most significant time sinks in sourcing is strategizing an effective job advertisement campaign. There are thousands of Job Boards in the US comprising of big giants such as Indeed, LinkedIn, Monster, Craigslist, ZipRecruiter, and niche platforms like Nurse.com, Lawjobs, Stack Overflow, Dribble. Each of the above channels will have a different efficacy ( CPC / CPA / CTA ) based on job attributes such as occupation, location, employer brand, and even the time of the year. Creating a media plan and continuously optimizing the same can be a humongous undertaking. The right mix of channels and their spend not only decrease the cost but also reduces the time taken to find the right talent. Based on our experience, the right media strategy can easily cut the cost of sourcing by more than half.

In a survey report from Dice, 72% of the recruiters have attributed a slower hiring process, 20% attribute weak candidate engagement, and 30% blame the higher cost of hiring to an ineffective automation strategy in recruiting. Lack of automation in the recruitment processes not only undermines efficiency but also results in missed hiring opportunities. Overall it leads to a higher hiring cost. 

Can we do better?

We live in a world where millions of jobs are posted every day, and millions of candidates interact with those jobs, thus generating massive data. If appropriately mined, it can generate priceless insights. The trifecta of Analytics, Automation, and AI has revolutionized many industries like Marketing and Advertising, and it’s time we use the trio to create magic in the recruitment industry. 

Where it can take recruiter hours to screen resumes for a job, a well “trained” software can do it in a matter of seconds. Not only that, but it is also immune to many biases that can creep into the subconscious of any human, leading to an erroneous selection or rejection of a resume. 

When it comes to developing a media strategy, a recruiter can at best take an educated guess from her experience. On the other hand, the software can crunch data of millions of jobs being posted on these advertising channels every day, monitor and correlate their performance to the right signals and decide on a strategy that would be much more accurate. Not only that, the software can shift the spend from non-performing channels to the performing ones, using techniques like reinforcement learning. 

Effective use of Automation and AI can lead to 3 highly lucrative advantages.

  1. Quality of Hire: This has often been the black box KPI due to unclosed feedback loop post a candidate is hired or shortlisted. As HR data becomes more natural to collect, it could be used to standardize the matching between candidates’ experience, knowledge, and skills, and the requirements of the job ( similar to how Netflix recommends movies or Spotify recommends songs ). It would also lead to more consistent hiring decisions by removing variables and biases that are not predictive for job performance.


  2. Reduce Time to Hire:   The average time to hire in the US is 39 days. After a job opening is advertised, it takes an average of 9 days to start screening candidates. This delay in sourcing is enormous when we consider that the best candidates are usually in the market for less than 10 days. Automating your supply can potentially reduce this time by a significant factor. Further, automated sourcing tools can mine your existing resume database and find the best matching candidates almost instantly. 

     iCIMS estimates a resume spends 23% of its time in the HR screening phase. AI-enabled screening tools can automatically screen, grade, and rank resume based on past hiring, thereby potentially reducing another 6 days. 

    Another significant saving can come from using automated outreach tools. These tools can engage qualified candidates by answering FAQ-style questions, auto emailing/texting the candidates to schedule interviews. 


  3. Reduce Cost of Hire: As more and more data pour in, recruiting software intelligent enough to leverage this data can help recruiters improve and optimize every step of the process. A few ways such software can help reduce cost are as follows:

    • Optimize advertising spend of each job by selecting the best mix of Job Boards and Social channels such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter.

    • Monitor relevant application/hire metrics and other KPIs to find inefficiencies and re-strategize.

    • Personalize candidate experience to reduce qualified drop-offs.
    • Create more engaging content (e.g., job descriptions) to attract relevant talent to increase reach and lowering CPC.

    • Target best candidates even when they are passive (retargeting) leading to better CPA

Do recruiters need to worry about their jobs?

Not really, no. In the next few years, finding top talent will depend on a recruiter’s ability to automate their workflow and intelligently leverage more and more data. AI will play the role of Augmented Intelligence, i.e., rather than replacing recruiters; it will be used to make them more useful. Significant shifts in the role of recruiter might look as follows:

  • Proactive strategic hiring rather than reactive backfilling.

  • Building an in-person relationship with candidates and determining culture fit.
  • Focus more on creative content to make it more engaging.

  • Measure more KPIs and work with the hiring manager to reduce hiring costs and increase the quality of hires.

If you want to learn more about how you can bring about that transformation in your organization, then we would like to talk and share our recommendations. Please feel free to reach out to me directly rchaki@joveo.com

ABOUT JOVEO

Joveo® delivers the most relevant hires in the shortest time to companies around the world. Providing real-time insights at every step of the job seeker journey from click to hire, our AI-powered job advertising platform dynamically manages and optimizes sourcing and applications across all online channels. Powering 15M+ job postings every day, our machine learning continuously identifies success, learns and improves to reach the talent you need, when you need it.

Built for ease of use, Joveo replaces the guesswork, complexity, and inefficiency of today’s recruiting with intelligence, transparency and efficiency, delivering more relevant candidates, more certainty, more success.