Let me start by saying, I love using new technologies.
There is something exciting about getting my hands on that latest techie gadget or recruitment software tool and setting them up to help me do my work better. The sense of anticipation is exhilarating, even if I might get a little impatient sometimes when I couldn’t get them to run the way I want (but I’ll usually get there). I also love surprising my clients with new data points that they can use in making better decisions.
However, a recent experience had given me a slightly different view on the use of technologies during hiring. Don’t get me wrong, technologies are essential and they definitely help to enhance the recruitment process, but, to be using them as an end to itself is probably not the best idea.
So to illustrate, I was using some Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) powered recruiting tools to help me with a some search assignments I’d picked up recently and they were absolutely amazing. These tools were able to provide me a candidate benchmark and generate personality profiles to help me decide if a candidate’s working style was a good match with the hiring manager’s. It was brilliant and it gave me clues that I can further delve into and ask targeted questions.
However, one particular personality profile jumped out at me and had me stumped for a moment:
It comes naturally for candidate X to try to reduce or avoid structure and bureaucracy to ignore existing rules and processes.
My first thought was to think – “Mmm, I do not want to show my client as it may disqualify candidate X”. I was down to my final shortlist and he fitted all the other criteria and looked a solid character. Striking him off the list meant I had to re-run my search again. I hesitated.
So I thought I should validate this with candidate X and try to understand whether this could be an issue. I also referred him to the source of information (CrystalKnows.com) so he could read the profile for himself. He agreed with the profile and was able to provide an honest explanation of how this may have came about.
I did the same for the rest of the candidates to ensure fairness across the board and what I also did, was to overlay the candidates’ profiles against the hiring manager’s to understand their potential compatibility. This also gave me additional data points on how well they would work together.
So with my concerns sufficiently allayed, I included candidate X among the list of potentials which I forwarded on to my client. I also provided my client with a range of data points that included candidates’ benchmark scores (from Hiretual), CrystalKnows profiles (candidates’ and client’s) and the Klout scores, along with my comments based on their interviews with me.
A few learning points for me from this experience:
Technology can only get you this far
Recruitment tools can provide you data points to help you form a view of your candidates. But these are limited to the algorithms that are written into them and, as advance as they may be these days, I believe you still need to do additional validation such as behaviourally-based interviews, in-box exercises, assessments and have good open and honest conversations.
A 10-minute phone chat with candidate X enabled me to move beyond the data points and allowed me a deeper insight into the psyche of the man. This ensured that I had a more holistic view and gave me the confidence to put him forward to my client. As ironic as it sounds, in today’s age of technology where A.I. and automation are talk of the town, we have to be more human than ever before.
Your clients need to be educated on how to use the data points
You need to help your clients understand them and build additional steps into the recruitment process to make more informed decisions. Often, clients can get overwhelmed with all the data coming through and are unable to interpret them effectively. It is then your responsibility to help them learn and make sense of the information so that they can use them to their advantage.
Which brings me to my next point…
Technology should raise questions instead of purely providing answers
Shannon Pritchett once said this during the Sourcing Social Talent conference Technology – “If you act like a robot, you will be replaced by one.” As with all technologies, you MUST use them to assist in gaining a greater understanding and they should NOT be an end to itself.
Curiosity is what sets you apart from the robots and you should always be questioning the data presented in front of you. Could it be possible the candidate has different personalities at work vs. during social settings? What are the possible reasons behind candidate X exhibiting those characteristics? Keep asking questions to move beyond the technology – that is one of the ways you can thrive a post A.I. recruitment world.
It is easy to become over reliant on technologies so it is important for us to be aware and not fall victim of this. Remember that they are there to either augment the recruitment process or assist with our decision-making and they should not be the star of the show.
Cover image: Shutterstock
How can you thrive in a post-A.I. recruitment world? Find out the new skills you need at ATC2018.
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