How technology is set to change the face of job hunting

The times of lengthy and complicated recruitment drives are long gone thanks to increasingly sophisticated online options, argues Elaine Lewis of jobmagnet.

Recruitment can be really tough, especially for a small business. Coming to the decision of taking on a new staff member is often the result of working at full capacity until breaking point is reached, or – worse – losing a valued team member. Although the need to recruit and grow your team is usually a glowing sign of success, it is hard won and tensions are often high during the recruitment process.

The times of lengthy and complicated recruitment drives, however, are long gone. The days of posting adverts in newspapers as potential employees wait a week to scour the relevant pages are no more; now the online world, for almost every industry, has taken over. Adverts go live at the click of a button and companies often have a ready and waiting talent pool thanks to online followings built up via social media in their local or industry-relevant communities; not to mention the reach of networking tools such as LinkedIn, whereby interested parties can keep an eye on companies and vice versa.

But while the online world has dominated the recruitment process for quite some time now, and made life far easier for recruiters of every size (as well as those searching for their next big break), technology is not about to stand still. A process can always be made more efficient; a tool more effective. Mirroring the everyday use of technology in our daily culture, consumers now expect information at the tap of a screen – two clicks is two too many and the relevant information should be present and ready at the surface.

Aggregate sites

One way that the online job search has been simplified even further is via aggregate sites, that pull in job adverts from a range of listings to just one place. Not only does this mean that the hunter can access a range of opportunities, without having to hop from site to site, but many platforms also offer the user the chance to upload their CV and be the hunted rather than the hunter. This makes head hunting far easier for businesses too, who can log onto the platform in question and browse through candidates, without any need for posting an ad, or for them to directly search and apply. This ensures that the recruitment process isn’t a lucky dip of who has seen the recruiter’s ad and decided to go for it, but puts the power into the recruiters hands to take their pick of all the candidates listed.

In other advancements, apps have changed the face of our smartphones, changed the way that we connect with one another and access our daily tools. In fact, some would say that our mobile handsets have changed the way we live our lives; so it only naturally follows suit that they would change the way we hunt for jobs, too. Having to access a browser, use a search engine, land upon a website, search again by industry or location, scour through clunky page after clunky page… it is almost like walking among dinosaurs for the new tech-savvy, smart and convenience-hungry generation. Job hunting, in their eyes, should be like hunting for an outfit – or a life partner. If they can find those things through a few swipes on an app, they should be able to find their next career that way too.

The extended childhood of our culture has also evolved our technology in line with our desire for fun and leisure; gamification is the buzzword to near-guarantee engagement. As our everyday lives become increasingly integrated with the virtual, there is more room for entertainment in previously humdrum tasks and chores. We can now work up points when we go for a run, or chart what we eat; so why not when we hunt for a job? Our team also predicts that this will continue to go further – soon there could be apps to monitor housework wins or bait you against your partner in a competition of grocery shopping money saving.

A feel-good vibe

Technology can integrate this fun component and create a real, feel-good vibe in any daily process, where users can feel validated and rewarded. In an environment like job hunting, which can sometimes appear very bleak, repetitive or unrewarding, this can help to lengthen the engagement and maintain the job seeker’s interest and enthusiasm – something that is critical when bouncing back from rejections in order to find that perfect opportunity. We allow the job hunter to accumulate an ‘activity score’, a thermometer of how active they are in their search which increases if they engage in ‘positive actions’ such as applying for a job or subscribing for alerts. This can also decrease if a user is inactive for a long time, to really incentivise them to sustain their interest in the search and to keep their points up. Little incentives like this add up to a far more engaged and positive job hunt.

Small business owners should keep their ear to the ground in order to jump on board new technology, and ensure their vacancies are listed where the best job hunters are searching. When working flat out and feeling the strain, it can be difficult to dedicate as much time as required for good recruitment and finding the right candidate. Instead of going through time consuming procedures, technology offers a far quicker route; use engaging apps to post job ads, whereby it is quick and easy for potential candidates to respond, and be prepared to consider further technology that will make life that little bit easier. For instance, using Skype or other video call software can speed up the interview process, certainly in the early stages.

Although it may take a little while to adapt and get the hang of, it will soon become the norm. The era of posting jobs on old-fashioned websites will soon become as much of a cultural relic as posting them in the paper or popping a sign in the window.

This article was provided by Elaine Lewis of jobmagnet

Further reading on recruitment

Ben Lobel

Ben Lobel

Ben Lobel was the editor of from 2010 to 2018. He specialises in writing for start-up and scale-up companies in the areas of finance, marketing and HR.

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