Recruitment did not manage to avoid the disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to a survey of 1,142 hiring managers in the US, Australia and the UK, 54% reported an increase in on-the-job stress in the past year.
But what was the main stressor for these hiring managers during the pandemic?
Despite unemployment globally growing by 1.5% between 2019 and 2020 to 6.5% of the labor force– the highest proportion in the 21st century and equaling more than 513 million people, which is double the working population of Europe – the largest barrier to hiring in 2020 was the lack of quality candidates.
HireVue’s study found that 40% of hiring leaders noted that there was shortage of appropriate and good candidates last year.
25% noted longer-lead times related to lower candidate availability and 14% reported difficulty in managing job posting. Of those surveyed, 23% said it took, on average, one to two weeks longer to fill jobs during the pandemic.
Not all doom and gloom
However, the pandemic was as not all negative for recruitment – mainly because of the successful leveraging of HR technology.
Those companies that did manage to find good candidates were able to do so quicker because of their use of virtual interviewing. The use of technology for recruitment also helped employers attract a more diverse pool of candidates.
HireVue’s research found that 54% said virtual interviews sped up the recruitment process, 41% noted it helped them find the best candidates, and 36% noticed an increase in the diversity of candidates they were attracting.
Virtual interviews, and remote working, also enabled companies to expand their geographical parameters for jobs, thereby widening and diversifying the candidate pool.
Technology further helped companies to reduce recruitment costs, as well as enabling the hiring manager to spend more time on candidate engagement. In fact, 96% of those surveyed thought virtual interviews improved the recruitment experience for candidates.
As a result, HireVue believes that virtual hiring is here to stay, but now companies need to focus on implementing technology that really focuses on candidate engagement, as well working seamlessly within the company’s larger tech stack.
To do this, HR teams need to look at how they can automate some of the administration tasks that distract them from properly engaging with candidates.
This was acknowledged by the respondents; 51% noted they wanted to spend less time on interview scheduling and more time on personalized interactions with candidates in order to win top talent in this competitive recruitment landscape.
One in four surveyed also acknowledged that taking a long time over recruitment put off candidates, as well as ran the risk they would have accepted another role, which meant possibly missing out on top tier talent.
HireVue CEO and chairman Kevin Parker commented: “As the economy rebounds, our data shows recruiters increasingly looking to virtual hiring to widen access to candidates they may not have had access to in the past.
“Employers are looking ahead to a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to rebuild a diverse and inclusive workforce, and will need to rely on technology to hire at scale,” concluded Parker.