Blog Talent Acquisition Strategies

Conversational AI: Transforming Talent Acquisition

On Global TA Day, we want to highlight one of our favorite areas of TA tech today…conversational AI.

In 2020, Aptitude Research published a comprehensive study on conversational AI to understand key drivers, highlight differentiators, and outline the business impact of these solutions. One year later, the talent acquisition landscape has significantly changed. Companies are feeling intense pressure to improve efficiencies, identify quality hires, reduce bias, and humanize the overall experience for both recruiters and candidates. As companies look closely at talent acquisition technology to help lift the administrative burden of recruiting teams and engage with candidates in a more meaningful way, conversational AI checks every box.

Here are the top findings from our report.

Conversational AI Is Not a Point Solution: Companies are still learning the value that conversational AI brings to talent acquisition. Companies that have leveraged these solutions to improve the application or screening processes are already recognizing the impact it can have on areas such as interviewing, onboarding, and internal mobility. Conversational AI is shifting from a quick-fix, point solution to a critical component in an end-to-end talent acquisition strategy. Conversational AI, unlike chatbots, is not a point solution. The more companies adopt these solutions, the more they recognize the potential throughout talent acquisition, and see advancements in use cases.

Conversational AI Is an Intelligent Assistant: Companies often think that candidates do not want to engage with conversational AI. The reality is that individuals are very familiar with conversational AI in their consumer and personal lives. Siri, Alexa, and other assistants help individuals get answers and guidance, and have become a part of daily life. Similar assistance plays a critical role in talent acquisition, offering candidates a “support team” as they go through various stages of their journey.

The ATS and CRM Markets Can’t Compete: Despite several acquisitions and ongoing discussions about conversational AI in the ATS or CRM solutions, only 30% of companies are looking at their existing providers for conversational AI capabilities. Many ATS and CRM providers partner with conversational AI providers even when they have their own capabilities. Conversational AI      requires deep domain expertise and a commitment to continuing to innovate and enhance the capabilities and intelligence offered.

Conversational AI Is Still More Than a Chatbot: The 2020 Aptitude Research report outlined the differences between conversational AI and chatbots. But, the confusion around the two still persists today. Companies quickly understand the difference when they implement these solutions, but do not always see it during the evaluation phase. According to Aptitude Research, 84% of companies want more than a basic chatbot to support their talent acquisition efforts.  Companies are requiring conversational AI solutions that understand the context around recruiting processes versus basic UI changes from chatbot. They are looking for an intelligent assistant to help both their teams and candidates.

Conversational AI Is Completely Transforming High-Volume Recruiting: Conversational AI is becoming the standard in high-volume recruitment. Currently, 65% of companies have some high-volume recruitment needs that include hourly, gig, volume of hires, and number of applicants. Conversational AI gives these companies a competitive advantage, helping them to compete for talent, fill positions quickly, and improve quality of hire.  Companies are automating 90-95% of process, screening and scheduling in under three minutes, and hiring in two days.

Recruiters in Professional Hiring Also See Massive Benefits: Recruiters are bogged down every day with repetitive tasks that keep them from doing the work they enjoy and the work that impacts the business the most – finding and meeting with more talented people. Companies in centralized, professional recruiting organizations state that 72% of recruiters are more likely to stay at their current job with the use of conversational AI, largely because time spent on administrative tasks is reduced by 50%.

The Audience for Conversational AI Is Expanding to Employees: Most companies are familiar with the use of conversational AI to support sourcing, apply, and interview scheduling. But, the interest in this solution for onboarding and internal mobility has increased this year. Conversational AI is not only candidate-centric, it is people-centric. Nineteen percent (19%) of companies using conversational AI are leveraging these solutions in the new hire process and 12% in internal mobility. Remote recruiting is the primary driver for the increased demand in these areas. Most companies rely on their HRMS or ATS for onboarding capabilities, and while these solutions include workflows and forms compliance, they do little to enhance the new hire experience.

Blog Talent Acquisition Strategies

Global TA Day: A Love Letter to Recruiters

It is Global TA Day and we are posting a series of blogs on all things TA. This blog focuses on the recruiter experience.

Talent acquisition is an amazing profession. The fundamental work of a recruiter is personal, meaningful, and purposeful. It enables companies to grow and expand into new markets and gives candidates new opportunities. Yet, companies do not always recognize the role of the recruiter or give TA teams the resources they need. According to Aptitude Research, only one in four companies are prioritizing recruiter turnover this year.

Companies looking to provide an exceptional employer experience to their recruiters should consider the following steps:

  • Recognize Recruiters: Companies must recognize the reality of recruiting today and the challenges recruiters face when identifying and attracting talent. Recruiters must juggle multiple roles today and companies must recognize the work they do and the impact it has on organizational performance.
  • Set Realistic Expectations: Companies must set realistic expectations of recruiting teams that can including hiring goals, diversity initiatives, and cost savings. To improve the recruiter experience, goals and expectations must be achievable.
  • Invest in Technology: Recruiting and hiring teams need the right solutions to be successful. Companies that invest in the right technology will improve efficiencies and create opportunities to engage with candidates in a more meaningful way, and at scale.

Talent acquisition professionals are under pressure to balance a heavy workload without support, and they must remain flexible. Aptitude Research found the following challenges impacting recruiting teams:

Req Workload: Thirty percent (30%) increase in requisition workload since 2020.

Doing More With Less: Limited resources on TA function with layoffs and limited budgets.

Administrative Tasks: Spending 16 hours per week scheduling and 10 hours per week finding candidates in the ATS.

The role of the recruiter has become incredibly complex, and according to Aptitude Research, 30% of recruiters are feeling burned out this year. Over the past few years, talent acquisition has been a priority for business leaders. TA has been given new responsibilities that include areas such as retention initiatives, branding, internal mobility, and contingent workforce. By adding new roles, new strategies, and new technology in a short period of time, talent acquisition at many companies has become unwieldy and difficult to manage. Talent acquisition professionals need more support in balancing multiple priorities. The recruiter experience is the most critical component of the candidate experience and companies need to recognize when recruiters feel overworked and make changes.