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Technology and the human touch: Why talent acquisition needs the best of both worlds

Fara Rives
By Fara Rives
on July 15, 2016
Talent acquisition success is dependent on a human touch (iStock/Yuri_Arcurs)

Technology is changing the face of recruitment at a faster pace than ever before. From algorithms and predictive analytics to artificial intelligence, recruitment is becoming increasingly reliant on the latest innovations.

However, while technology continues to transform the function for the better, it's vital that talent acquisition doesn't lose its human touch. After all, recruitment is all about people, and finding the right person for the job will always be dependent on human relationships and intuition.

At Allegis Global Solutions (AGS), we believe that enjoying the best of both worlds is key to successful talent acquisition. Embrace the latest tech developments, but utilize them alongside human expertise, rather than at its expense.

Over-automation?

A perfect example of the need for this balance is automation. This has worked wonders for recruitment. Thanks to automated technology, both employees and employers are able to take advantage of a process that is simpler and more accessible. However, it is important to remember that productivity relies on more than volume, speed, and cost dimensions alone. Talent acquisition requires art as well as science to be a success.

Allegis Group research has revealed nearly three in four businesses believe the recruitment process has become more automated in the past five years, while close to two in three have encountered unexpected problems due to increased use of technology. These include finding it harder to judge cultural fit (cited by 54%), difficulty in assessing skill fit (46%) and an overall reduction in the speed of the recruitment process (33%).

How can problems such as these be avoided? Best-in-class businesses draw heavily on technology when it comes to measuring and monitoring Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), Service Level Agreements (SLAs) and reporting, but priorities person-to-person communication at key stages of the process such as qualifying new job requirements, understanding hiring manager acceptance or rejection trends, and providing interview feedback to candidates. Any process step in which collaboration is needed or new information is exchanged from one person to another is best supported by a personalized discussion to ensure mutual understanding and build a sense of respect and partnership.

The best of both worlds

As technology continues to develop, it is probable that screening and sourcing will become increasingly automated, with data algorithms and predictive analytics increasingly able to accurately highlight a pool of suitable candidates for a role in a more time and cost-effective manner than if done by recruiter.

However, certain elements of the talent acquisition process will always require the human touch. Cultural fit, for example, is hugely important and it is unlikely technology will ever be able to gauge this accurately, as it is very much a human concept that only a human being can effectively assess. Even when it comes to data, it should be remembered that a human touch is still required to input, process and analyses this information if valuable insights are to be achieved.

Recruitment will always be about people and needs to be managed by people as a result. By embracing the advantages of technology, but never losing sight of this fact, you can enjoy the best of both worlds and the competitive advantage that access to the best talent provides.

Learn more about how AGS can use the winning combination of technology and human touch to enhance your talent acquisition

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Fara Rives
Written by Fara Rives
Fara is the current director of product development at AGS. She currently drives AGS’ services team supporting our RPO programs. Fara is responsible for leading the RPO organization in research for new products, product enhancements and product expansion. She evaluates the potential and practicality of products in development and relies on extensive experience and judgment to plan and accomplish goals. Fara earned a business marketing degree from Arizona State University’s, WP Carey School of Business, in Tempe, AZ.

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