2023 is already shaping up to be quite the year in terms of the challenges recruiters face. Fortunately, we’ve put together some helpful resources to give you the hottest take, so you can stay one step ahead of the game next year.
Our team devised 6 challenges they feel recruitment as an industry will face this year:
- Shortage of quality candidates
- Poor candidate experience
- Targeting passive candidates
- Dated processes
- Avoiding bad hires
- The role of your website in all of this
Challenge #1: A shortage of quality candidates
That’s not to say they’re not out there – more that it’s difficult to discern between those which are quality and those which aren’t appropriate for the roles you have available. 76% of recruiters say that attracting quality candidates is the biggest challenge they face, and this has a few implications when it comes to the wider business:
- Vacancies are around for an extended amount of time, meaning your teams work harder than they should be for longer, risking burnout and poor productivity.
- There is a need for increased efforts of recruiters and their clients in attracting candidates that are active and inactive; there has never been more of a need to be ‘strategic’ in these efforts.
- Being able to get qualified candidates’ interest as they are afraid to switch jobs (as well as highlighting key trending ‘perks’ of jobs i.e. remote work)
There are things you can do to mitigate these issues:
- Make it candidate friendly
As most qualified candidates are not looking for new challenges this puts enormous pressure on the application process, it needs to be really candidate friendly. Do you still make candidates do all the heavy lifting by making them write cover letters and sending them over with CVs? That’s not candidate friendly.
- Still make that awkward LinkedIn approach. It works.
Sending those DMs to your prospecting candidates isn’t a trait unique to you – your competitors are too. Don’t stop, but rather think about how to do it differently than others. Looking at the previous DMs you’ve sent you’ve probably messaged people by saying you are interested in their profile and would like to have a quick chat. Well, that’s exactly what other companies send as well. So, be different.
- Build trust.
In these current circumstances people are reluctant to switch jobs as they need to face a probation period. Is there a way for you to be more thorough in the process so you wouldn’t need a probationary period? Perhaps you could differentiate yourself by being one of the few companies that is transparent about salaries (or at the very least, providing a salary band). This also helps to build trust between yourself and the candidate, increasing the chance they will use your services going forward.
Challenge #2: Providing candidates with a positive experience on your site
Our next tip is around providing your candidates with a better experience throughout the process; that starts from the moment they arrive on your website. 60% of job seekers abandon the application process if it takes too long or is too complex. Go to your audience where they’re at, make it easy for them, and provide them with an overall better experience to attract a wider, and higher calibre, pool of candidates.
If you don’t get this right, there are some implications:
- Loss of bottom-line revenue, hampering company growth
- Unhappy candidates who don’t return
- Quality candidates drop out from the process before you even know they were interested
- Damage to the brand and candidate trust in your business
- Ultimate reduction in number of candidates in your talent pool due to high barriers to application and poor experience
In order to mitigate this issue, you should:
- Focus on proactive communication throughout the process
According to a recent research by Thrivemyway, 68% of recruitment professionals state that investing in new recruiting technology is the best way to improve recruiting performance, so this is something that many companies are looking into at the moment and making a top priority for the year ahead.
- Make it easier for people to apply
Challenge #3: Targeting passive candidates
There are a huge number of things that could block a candidate or business client from leaving their details with you – perhaps it’s too difficult for them to get in touch due to a lengthy contact form, or just an email address or phone number on the Contact Us page. Maybe it’s because they’re just not ready to find a new job yet – but they’re thinking about it. 70% of the global workforce is passive talent. Either way, they’re still someone who has some level of intent and so it makes sense to make the most of these opportunities as they come about.
To mitigate these issues:
1. Resource projects that target passive candidates with more time and tools
- You will need to be more creative in the sourcing process when attracting passive candidates
2. Make it easier for people to apply
- Lower the barrier to apply by introducing things like chatbots or online tests that make applying easy, provide candidates with information about the work and how they would suit the role.
- A recent study from Wilsonhalligan, a private luxury yacht company, shows how they were able to Increase the overall candidate leads in 6 months by 418% by applying chatbots as a key part of their recruitment process
Challenge #4: Dated recruitment processes
Dated recruitment processes is a challenge that, whilst not unique to 2023, is something that far too many recruitment businesses circumvent when trying to improve their offering. The general mood amongst candidates is shifting – they have more choice when it comes to the roles available, and so they’re expecting more from the businesses they’re applying to work for.
After all, the application process is a two way street – you are assessing them, but they are also sizing you and the company up against their own personal values to see if they feel it would be a good fit. So, once again, make it easy for them to apply and be transparent about the process and the way it works. Nobody wants to fill out a five page contact form style application that takes 3 hours of their life to fill in. It’s 2022.
Optimising each step of the process through technology can also help ease the burden and workload on consultants and prove to make a big difference to the bottom line. Those that are starting to embrace new technology to streamline processes are already ahead of the game.
It’s important to prioritise which parts of the process are slowing the time-to-hire, in particular, and start to explore what could optimise the process.
This can mean:
- Poor candidate experience
- Time wasted on things that could be automated which has cost implications in terms of your existing colleagues’ time
- Lost opportunities as candidates abandon the process in favour of a competitor with an easier and smoother candidate experience
How to fix this:
- Update your knowhow on the most recent trends in recruitment by joining online and offline recruitment communities, following top industry influencers and joining industry training sessions
- Make yourself familiar with rising recruitment technology opportunities and how you can leverage them within your business to reduce time-to-hire and streamline your recruitment process
Challenge #5: Avoiding bad hires
It’s a problem as old as recruitment itself. The cost of a bad hire is about 30% of the employee’s first-year earnings according to the U.S. Department of Labour. Considering the current economic climate, this would be difficult to swallow with one poor hiring choice. Multiply that across a larger business, and the costs start to become a big problem.
So, it’s obvious then that you need to have proper processes in place to avoid bad hires. There are three things that explain most bad hires:
- Mismatch in the skills of the person and the role
- Poor culture fit
- The company not knowing what/why they actually needed to hire
Traditional recruitment processes tend to focus on skills fit, ignoring the cultural fit of each candidate with your existing team. If you have any expectation of your new hire working alongside existing team members, then you should probably take cultural fit into account.
Performance and behavioural questions are therefore key to focus on as you search for the best candidates to fit your client’s organisation.
What should you do?
- Be thorough when defining the required skills for the position. Unfortunately many recruiting supervisors and organisations aren’t aware of the skill sets needed for their vacancies so spare time for your recruiters in order to execute proper evaluation
- Challenge the recruiting supervisor about the role and its importance to make sure the role is something the company really needs
- Focus on the culture fit by making sure the candidates get exposed to the company culture. There are several ways you can do it in different phases of the recruitment process. It should be noted that this shouldn’t come at the cost of all else, though – as that still makes for a poor hire!
BONUS: Challenge #6: The role of your website in all of this
Utilising your recruitment website is critical in tackling some of these challenges. Company websites are still the most important source of applicants seeking new opportunities with 24.8% of job seekers mentioning it, versus job boards, which sit at 24.5% of applications, referrals at 23.4%, and social media at 12.7% respectively. (FinancesOnline)
This challenge introduces you to CRO, or conversion rate optimisation, which refers to how well you are able to convert website visitors into applications or new business leads – a key thing to consider for all recruitment businesses.
Conversion rate optimisation or CRO is the practice of raising your conversion rate by compelling visitors to your site to take specific actions like buying a product. Compared to driving more and more web traffic, CRO is a far more cost effective way to get results. As we discussed in earlier emails, recruiters are missing a trick by not utilising perhaps the greatest tool in their armoury; their website.
If a candidate or client arrives at your website, you have to inspire confidence in as many ways as possible otherwise they will simply leave and go to your competition. Don’t let this happen!
Recruitment is set to face some serious challenges in 2023. You can download our guide using the bot below, or contact us to get all the best tips on how to mitigate these challenges in your recruitment business!