New Research: Key Trends in Interviewing

For most companies, interviewing is still broken. According to our latest research report, one in three companies are not confident in their interview process today and one in two companies have lost quality hires due to a poor interview process this year. Companies face several challenges with interviews, including a lengthy process, too many interviews, inconsistency, lack of objective data, and bias. These challenges not only impact the efficiency of talent acquisition efforts but the overall candidate experience. As a result, only 24% of candidates are happy with the interview process. The challenges with interviewing are not new and the pandemic did not bring much change.

Here are some findings about what goes wrong and how technology can help.

Where Does the Interview Process Go Wrong?

Interview Process Is Too Long: The interview process can be frustrating for both employers and candidates. Companies that create lengthy interview processes do not necessarily collect data that can inform decision making. A longer interview process does not equate to more effective hiring. It puts a company at risk for losing talent. Forty percent (40%) of candidates stated that it was over two weeks since they heard anything from an employer after their first interview, and 52% of companies state that the interview process lasts four to six weeks.

Too Many Interviews: Over half of companies make candidates go through four or more interviews. For companies looking to reduce time to fill, too many interviews can impact efficiency as well as experience. Companies are at risk of losing quality talent when the interview process is delayed or too many interviewers are introduced.

Inconsistent Interviews: When companies lack a strategy for interviews, hiring managers and recruiters often go rogue and ask questions or conduct interviews with little guidance. Inconsistency in the interview process can create inequity and damage the employer brand.

Data-Driven Decisions: Organizations feel pressure to act quickly and may make decisions based on gut. Companies are not relying on data and insights to drive these decisions because they don’t have information beyond the resume, which only provides a limited, often biased view of a candidate.

Bias in the Interview: Companies must recognize and acknowledge bias in the hiring process. Only 30% of companies identified bias as a top challenge in talent acquisition, yet one in three candidates have experienced bias in the interview process. Relying only on human interviews creates inconsistent hiring standards and introduces bias. 

How Can Smart Technology and AI Help?

The right technology can help companies address the challenges they face with interviewing to:

  • Empower recruiters and hiring managers to make smarter decisions
  • Improve recruiter productivity
  • Improve hiring diversity by using blind smart interview technology from the start
  • Create consumer-grade candidate experiences through the convenience of a smart interviewer

The pandemic accelerated the investment in digital interview solutions. In February 2020, less than 60% of companies were using or planning to use video interview providers. One year later, over 80% of companies were using or planning to use a broader set of intelligent interview platforms. Video was the tool of choice at the beginning of the pandemic for asynchronous hiring. The problem was that many of these solutions merely replaced face-to-face interactions, with a less human way of interviewing. Many candidates do not feel comfortable with the format of a video interview, especially if they are timed. For many companies, abandonment rates are high on video.

Today, there are technology choices available that remove that cognitive load and deliver on candidate expectations. AI is fundamentally changing every aspect of HR and there is growing curiosity and appetite to understand it. According to Aptitude Research, 63% of companies are investing or planning to invest in AI solutions this year, compared to 42% in 2020. This study found that 39% of companies believe it brings positive benefits, and 32% of companies are starting to leverage AI in interviewing.

If you are interested in the full report (sponsored by Sapia), you can download it for free here.


Humanity in the Workforce: The Impact on Hybrid Work, Mental Health and Childcare

The events of the past two years have reshaped the future of work and the relationship between the employer and employee. According to new research that we are publishing next week, companies have responded to today’s reality by increasing their focus on employee experience. One in three companies have increased their spend on the employee experience and 47% of companies are investing in new solutions to support these objectives. Companies across all industries are looking for an immediate solution to solve retention and improve performance.

Unfortunately, despite this increased investment, most companies are falling short. They are taking a one-size-fits-all approach and treating employees like transactions instead of humans. Companies today must rethink their approach to talent and humanize work. They must focus on the individual, build more meaningful relationships, and provide an experience that is rooted in inclusivity, humanity, dignity, and trust.

Several factors are influencing human-centered work, including remote and hybrid work models, mental health, and new responsibilities of caregivers.

Hybrid work models  

Not every company is clear on their future workforce model, and the next year will likely bring more change and uncertainty. Companies that listen to their employees, adjust to the unknown, and provide transparency will build better relationships with talent. Aptitude Research found a mix of work models that are impacting organizations and the future of work Whether working from home or adjusting to new office rules, employees often feel lost and isolated in these models. 52% of companies have a hybrid model. Companies must provide a different level of care and compassion to remote or hybrid models.

Mental Health

On average, companies in this study stated that 36% of their workforce faces mental health challenges. Although companies have responded to the topic of mental health in the workforce by providing days and weeks off, collectively, it is not enough. Only 24% of companies have asked employees if they need support in the past six months and only 36% of companies provide mental health benefits. Organizations need to change the stigma and ideas around mental health. Employees are asking for more support and organizations need to provide a more human response.


The role of caretakers evolved during the pandemic as more employees were faced with having to care for children, elders, and other family members themselves while balancing a new work dynamic. Every employee is impacted by care, yet employers do not typically address childcare issues and most employees do not feel safe talking about their needs with their managers. In today’s environment, companies must think about how care impacts the employee experience. Currently, one in three employees do not feel comfortable talking about childcare and only 11% of employers are asking employees how to support their caregiving needs.

According to this study, companies are not taking active steps to acknowledge these new responsibilities of their workforce or to provide the support that employees need during these times. The most common action that employers take is providing leave to care for family members (paid and unpaid). Only 30% of companies offer clear career advancement opportunities for caregivers and only 36% of companies offer three or more months of parental leave. The pressure that employees feel in their personal lives is impacting their decisions to stay with an employer and in some cases, possibly leave the workforce.

I am excited to share our latest report on humanity in the workforce next week!


iCIMS Acquires Candidate.ID and Strengthens Its Recruitment Marketing Offering

Today, iCIMS announced the acquisition of Candidate.ID, a leader in recruitment marketing automation. By adding Candidate.ID’s functionality to its Talent Cloud, iCIMS offers a powerful recruitment marketing offering with the ability to effectively engage talent. In addition, this acquisition makes iCIMS better positioned to compete against ATS providers and stand-alone CRM providers. I have been following Candidate.ID for the past few years, and I am excited about this opportunity.

Below are a few of my initial thoughts:

What is Candidate.ID?

Companies are facing pressure to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of talent acquisition efforts. Candidate.ID helps companies solve this challenge by identifying, nurturing, and engaging ready-now talent. It solves what the ATS, LinkedIn, and CRM cannot do – informing recruiters when someone is ready to be hired and engaging that individual in a meaningful way. As a result, recruiters receive notifications when candidates are interested, and their profiles are updated in real-time, reducing time-to-fill, improving candidate engagement, and increasing conversion rates.

One key differentiator is that Candidate.ID focuses on In-Demand talent, helping companies build pipelines for critical roles that are hard to fill, including healthcare professionals, engineers, scientists, and enterprise sales. Its scoring capabilities allow companies to filter candidates by engagement scores and match them against job descriptions.

What Do We Know About This Acquisition?

Before joining iCIMS, Steve Lucas was the CEO of Marketo, a marketing automation provider. Given his background, It is no surprise that he was impressed by Candidate.ID and the potential to enhance Talent Cloud with these capabilities. Here are a few things that we know about the acquisition so far.

  • Brand: Immediately following the acquisition, Candidate.ID will be referred to as “Candidate.ID, an iCIMS company.” A brand transition may occur in 2023.
    • Flexibility: iCIMS is taking a flexible approach to selling and packaging Candidate.ID. It will be offered to existing customers, sold as a stand-alone, and sold to RPOs.
  • Integration: In the near-term, Candidate.ID’s solutions will be integrated into iCIMS CRM and iCIMS ATS. The product integration will continue to roll out in phases across data, user experience, and workflows across the entire Talent Cloud, including unique use cases in the areas of internal mobility.

What is Marketing Automation?

Marketing automation helps companies better engage and nurture talent by automating marketing tasks and letting companies know which candidates are cold, warm, and “ready-now.” It sits at the top of the funnel and manages all interactions with talent, including when they visit a career site, open an email, open a job advertisement, etc. It solves what the ATS, LinkedIn, and CRM cannot do – informing recruiters when someone is ready to be hired and engaging that individual in a meaningful way. Integrating CRM and marketing automation software can increase a company’s recruitment marketing capabilities and improve the experience.

How Does it Help?

Marketing automation helps companies understand the talent they are attracting, manage talent pipelines more effectively, and provide a better experience to both recruiters and candidates. Some of the use cases include:

  • Lead Nurturing: As today’s companies face challenges attracting talent and managing applicant volume, they need to nurture their candidate relationships over time. Candidates are not always ready to apply for a job with their first engagement. With marketing automation, companies can check in with candidates, create more meaningful relationships, and track engagement levels to know when candidates are “ready now.”
  • Target Audience: With marketing automation, companies can better understand the talent they target and track who is interested and engaged. It uses a multi-channel approach to understand what content individuals are interested in, how they want to receive that content and then serves up relevant information. It provides visibility into the marketing activities so that companies can see what activities are working and what needs to change.
  • Analytics: Once a campaign has ended, the system generates analytics showing how successful the campaign was and what may need to change in the future. Analytics provide insights into cold, warm, and ready candidates.

I am excited to share any updates on this acquisition over the next few months and include Candidate.ID in our Recruitment Marketing Index report.

Blog Talent Acquisition Technology

Top TA Tech Trends in 2022

The talent acquisition technology landscape has shifted over the past few years. According to Aptitude Research, 72% of companies are investing in new technology in 2022, but only one in two companies measure the ROI of that investment. Traditional providers are reinventing themselves, startups are emerging overnight, and new categories are being created. Talent acquisition buyers have more opportunities, but they also face new pressures when considering remote work, candidate communication, and employer brand.

Talent acquisition success is measured by its ability to adjust to change. And talent acquisition leaders face pressure to adopt the latest technology innovations in a short time. Keeping up with the latest trends is no small task.

I am excited to share the latest research on TA tech from Aptitude tomorrow on a webinar with Appcast, a leading programmatic job advertising provider. A few of the trends we will discuss include:

  1. The ATS Is Not Enough: The modern talent acquisition system is more than a workflow or a traditional ATS. It includes recruitment marketing, CRM, onboarding, and internal mobility. Many providers have enhanced their interview management capabilities, have dabbled with AI-matching, and have made commitments to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). The modern talent acquisition system is an end-to-end platform that supports attracting, recruiting, and hiring talent.
  • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: DEI is a priority for companies investing in TA tech but not every provider is providing support beyond marketing messaging. We will discuss what tech can and cannot do to support DEI through leadership team, culture, product capabilities, and services.
  • AI Matching: It is difficult to talk about talent acquisition technology without including the impact of AI. Providers have focused on AI matching in a big way over the past year. Many providers are investing in both candidate-centric and employer-centric matching as part of their solution.
  • Internal Mobility: Companies are looking closely at their internal mobility as it relates to talent acquisition. Most providers offer basic capabilities in this area that include dedicated career sites and personalized communication to internal hires. Few providers go deeper with skills frameworks, succession planning, and career development.
  • Foundational Layer: This presentation looks more closely at the foundational layer of the TA tech stack and includes analysis and considerations for integration, data management, and automation. Companies that achieve the most success with their talent acquisition systems are paying close attention to this layer of technology.
  • Programmatic Job Advertising: : Unlike traditional job advertising models that are slow and time-consuming, a programmatic approach solves an immediate need for companies today – greater efficiency. Companies state that the key driver for technology decisions is reducing time to fill and improving overall efficiency. By streamlining advertising and targeting the right candidates, the process of attracting and recruiting talent improves significantly. Aptitude Research found that for companies using programmatic job advertising, 90% are either continuing to invest or will increase their spend this year.
  • Candidate Communication: Candidate communication is a critical part of improving the candidate experience, especially in a remote world. Communication is more than mobile apply and SMS texts. Our analysis of each provider included integration with messaging platforms, conversational AI, and collaboration platforms. 42% of companies are investing or planning to invest in conversational AI this year.

It will be an exciting year in TA tech! I hope you can join us!

Blog Talent Acquisition Technology

A Week in Review: Acquisitions, Jobs Report, and Rebrands

Last week, someone asked me if the momentum and investment in TA tech and HR tech will continue in 2022. And, the answer seems to be YES. This week included acquisitions, investment announcements, and even a rebranding. It is an exciting time to be in this market for providers, buyers, and even analysts. We found that over 60% of companies are increasing their investment in TA tech this year, and buyers are looking closely at what solutions will help them attract, recruit, and hire talent.

A few of the big announcements include:

SmartRecruiters Acquires Attrax: A career site can make or break a company’s ability to attract and convert talent. And, not all career sites are designed the same. ATS providers have invested in career sites over the past few years, but most enterprise companies still need to look at third-party options to build dynamic and engaging career sites. This acquisition of Attrax, a leading career site provider, further strengthens SmartRecruiters’ recruitment marketing capabilities with personalized and engaging career sites.

Phenom Acquires Tandemploy: Phenom has expanded beyond talent acquisition and offers an experience platform for the entire employee lifecycle. Tandemploy is a Berlin-based HR tech company focused on solving key problems associated with employee experiences. This addition enhances the capabilities of Phenom’s AI-powered Talent Experience Management (TXM) platform and grows the company’s presence in Europe.

Hiretual Rebrands to HireEZ: This week, Hiretual rebranded to HireEZ and hosted an analyst day to announce this news and $26M of investment. HireEZ’s vision is to create a new category around Outbound Recruiting. Some of my brilliant analyst friends (George LaRocque, Trish McFarlane and Steve Boese, Tim Sackett) did great covering this announcement.

January Jobs Report: The January Jobs Report came out today, and Andrew Flowers, Chief Economist of Appcast, did a great job covering this news and its implications on the labor market. With 467,000 jobs added and unemployment holding steady at 4%, the job growth trajectory is looking up. Despite 15 million people with COVID, the labor market is not slowing down. According to the report:

Retail accelerating thru January

Restaurants & bars not as affected by Omicron as they were by Delta

 Healthcare, transportation & warehousing are steady

Manufacturing slowing

2022 is off to a busy start, and looking forward to what this year brings. We are about to publish two new studies on humanity in the workforce and data-driven hiring. Stay tuned!

Blog Talent Acquisition Technology

2022 Talent Trends: Care and Humanity

If 2021 was the year of rethinking the approach to talent, 2022 is the year for rebuilding it. Companies are facing intense pressure to both recruit and retain talent today. The pandemic has changed the relationship between employer and employee, and many companies are looking for ways to engage their workforce better.

Over the past two years, the focus on care has helped to improve this relationship by providing more empathy and understanding to the employee and candidate experiences. But, unfortunately, care and humanity are not priorities for every company. According to Aptitude Research, only 22% of companies stated that humanity is part of their company culture, and only 10% of companies have a clear idea of what they need to do to bring more humanity and care into their work environment.

Companies in the process of evaluating their talent processes and technology must lead with care.

I am excited to discuss the future of care and humanity on a webinar with Misha Chakrabarti, Product Marketing Specialist at Avature, on January 20 at 11 am EST.

Below are a few themes that we will discuss:

  • Skills, AI and Automation: Many companies embrace AI to improve efficiency and save recruiters’ and managers’ time. But, AI and a skills-based approach to talent can also provide greater humanity. It allows companies to understand candidates and employees better, connect them with the right opportunities, and provide a fair and inclusive process. AI can lift the administrative burden placed on recruiters and managers and allow them to focus on relationship building.
  • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: Over the past year, companies increased their investment in services and technology to support DEI initiatives. While technology can help to reduce bias in the talent acquisition and talent development processes, it is not a fix-all. Companies need to consider what changes they need to make to their culture and talent practices to provide a safe and inclusive work environment. Companies committed to care will start by looking internally before investing in technology.
  • Communication: Care is only possible through strong communication. Companies must consider the tone of their communication with candidates and employees and the communication methods. Communication must be frequent and meaningful, but companies must reach talent where they live and spend their time, including text, messaging, chat, and video.
  • Agility: Every company proved to be flexible and agile during the pandemic. Companies had to adapt in a short period of time. Agility helps companies respond to immediate needs but also prepare for the future.
  • Hybrid Work Model: Not every company is clear on their future workforce model, and 2022 will likely bring more change and uncertainty. Companies that listen to their employees, adjust to the unknown, and provide transparency will build better relationships with talent.

2022 is a year where these ideas and concepts of care will be tested. For companies committed to recruiting and retaining talent, a focus on care and humanity is the only way. I am excited to share some of our research on these topics. I hope you can join us!

Blog Uncategorized

How Integration Impacts the Employee Experience

According to Aptitude Research, 72% of companies are increasing their investment in employee experience technology next year. These solutions include everything from wellbeing to mental health to engagement surveys and career development. But, as companies spend more on technology, the employee experience has not improved much in the past year. We found that 62% of employees do not feel valued, and 64% have not been recognized consistently this year. Technology can play a significant role in improving this experience, but these systems need to be implemented and integrated to make an employee’s life easier, not harder. And, they need to be integrated in a way that connects employees with their managers and leaders.

I am thrilled to be sharing some of our research on how integration can improve the employee experience during a webinar tomorrow with my friend, Greg Belkin, at Jitterbit. Integrating HR systems have significant benefits in providing consistent data, enabling a better experience, and eliminating manual processes. Yet, integration has long been a point of frustration for companies investing in new technology. Many companies lack dedicated resources and underestimate the needs and expectations of IT to build integrations. Providers downplay the challenges of working with partners and the willingness to work with their competitors. And IT and HRIT are typically preoccupied with other priorities. In fact, 1 in 3 talent acquisition and HR professionals surveyed said that IT views talent acquisition integration as a low priority.

Here are a few themes that we will cover during the webinar:

We are Thinking About Integration Too Late: Unfortunately, two-thirds of companies do not consider integration until evaluation and after implementation. Less than half of companies ask these questions in advance of their vendors. The foundation should be part of the essential requirements when evaluating providers, and companies that start this process early can see greater success.

Clear Ownership is Important: Companies with successful technology adoption have clear ownership of integration, data management, and automation, and they also have clearly defined roles. Without a strong foundation, talent acquisition may have an internal conflict with IT or key stakeholders around these critical areas. By establishing a clear vision and outlining responsibilities in advance, companies will have a much smoother process. Thirty-four percent (34%) of companies have a dedicated operations role on the HR team involved in these decisions.

Companies Must Measure Results: Integration is a continuous process. Companies must continually evaluate the quality of the integration, partnership with providers, costs, and security. When asked how satisfied companies are with their integration, respondents were least satisfied with timeframes, communication with providers, and costs and most satisfied with data security and the quality of the integrations. Companies should communicate these concerns with all key stakeholders, including IT. As companies look to different systems, finding a provider that is an active partner in the integration process should be a key consideration.

Companies with successful integrations are more likely to improve the employee experience and optimize their technology investments. I am looking forward to this discussion tomorrow and hope you can join!

Blog Employee Experience Uncategorized

Gratitude: The Power of Employee Recognition

In research we conducted last year, only 1 in 2 employees had received any recognition from their employer since the pandemic started. Fast forward a year later, and I am not sure much has changed.

Employee recognition is the most basic way that companies can improve the employee experience. It is saying “thank you” in a way that is frequent and meaningful. For any company struggling with retention, engagement, or “The Great Resignation,” recognition is a good place to start.

Companies that invest in strategies and technology to recognize and motivate their employees are more likely to improve the employee experience. Recognition is one of the most powerful tools available to organizations, yet it is often ignored. When employees feel recognized and empowered, they are more likely to contribute or organizational goals, achieve performance objectives and stay with their employer.

So, what is holding most companies back? For starters, recognition is often done only around employee anniversaries. Employees get an email or a certificate, or a company mug. It is not consistent, and it doesn’t provide the motivation when employees need it most.

A few strategies for companies looking to improve recognition:

Invest in Social Recognition: Companies that invest in social recognition software can create a culture where managers and peers consistently recognize each other in a frequent and meaningful way.

Empower Managers: Managers often lack the tools and resources they need to recognize their employees. Providing solutions that empower managers to recognize employees and hold them accountable will increase recognition efforts and the overall employee experience.

Measure the Results: Recognition will not impact the overall employee experience unless organizations systematically measure recognition efforts and adjust their programs accordingly.

Companies should also consider how technology can improve recognition. With 47% of companies increasing their investment in employee experience technology, employee appreciation should be part of the equation. Achievers, OC Tanner, and Work Human are all providers that focus on employee recognition. But recognition is also starting to emerge in other areas of HR Technology, including employee engagement surveys, project management tools, wellbeing, and mental health solutions. The good news is that today’s companies have options for motivating employees and showing appreciation.

As companies get ready for Thanksgiving and the holiday season, a simple “thank you” to employees can go a long way.

Blog Talent Analytics

The Future of Talent Analytics: New Research

Talent acquisition and HR leaders are reevaluating processes, technology, and analytics to prepare for the next year. And, companies must build a deeper understanding of what drives success and what candidates want in an employer. But, unfortunately, most companies are looking at analytics through one lens and collecting operational data without driving insights or action. I am excited to present new research on the future of talent analytics next week on a webinar with Jason Moreau, CEO of Survale.

As companies look to the future of talent analytics, they can no longer rely on reactionary decision-making. They need a more robust approach that harnesses the power of both experiential data (subjective) and operational data (objective) data. We need to include the experiences of candidates and employees in decision-making.

A few things we will talk about during this webinar.

  • The Issue with Data. A lack of data is not the problem for most TA functions. Companies have data, but they are not always using data to drive action. And over half of the companies still rely on resume data to make decisions. Companies must think differently about data and include insights from every aspect of talent acquisition, from recruitment marketing to offer and onboarding.
  • A Broader Look at Data. Companies must look at both operational and experiential data to create a better way to recruit candidates and develop employees. They must make use of positive experiences and collect feedback from individuals throughout the process.
  • The Impact of Experiences. Companies that measure experiences and invest in experiences see improvements in brand, NPS scores, and employee retention. We will discuss why experiences need to be a critical component of analytics for the future.
  • A New Framework. We will be sharing a new framework that looks at how companies can set goals, define metrics, gather insights, and take action. We will apply this framework to the candidate experience, employee experience, quality of hire, internal mobility, and candidate apply process.

I hope you can join us next Tuesday, 10/19, at 2 pm EST.

Blog Talent Acquisition Technology

HR Technology Conference: Key Trends and Providers to Watch

The HR Technology market is not slowing down. Companies are increasing their budgets, providers are launching new products, and investors are looking for their next opportunity. But, the landscape has changed overnight, and keeping up with the latest trends is not easy. Last week’s HR Technology Conference brought this community back together to bring clarity on the key trends, celebrate a year of resilience, and plan for what’s next.

New providers, new categories, and new opportunities were all represented at this year’s event. It was enough to get even the most traditional of HR buyers excited about innovation.

I was fortunate to meet with many providers, and a few themes stood out this year:

AI Matching and Talent Intelligence

It’s hard to find a conversation in TA tech that does not include AI matching. Every TA startup seems to be looking at this space, investors are interested, and companies want a better way to match candidates to jobs and jobs to candidates. Matching is the space to watch right now. ATS providers are enhancing their capabilities, but the two providers to watch are HiredScore and Eightfold. We found that 34% of companies stated that they are using some matching, and they are two times more likely to improve diverse sources and three times more likely to improve quality of hire.

HiredScore: One of the most impressive products and teams in talent acquisition today. HiredScore is committed to using ethical AI standards to help companies find and manage talent. In addition, it provides recruiters with a more efficient way to identify talent (both internal and external) and candidates with a fair and equitable hiring process.

Eightfold: Eightfold is a talent intelligence platform that includes talent acquisition, talent management, and talent flex (contingent workforce) solutions. It has grown significantly over the past year with 400 employees, 3 patents, and FedRAMP ready status.

Jobvite: Jobvite won an HR Top Product of the Year Award for its Zero Click Intelligent Sourcing. It automates sourcing efforts when a job requisition is first opened. The solution saves recruiters time while surfacing and activating qualified candidates from their CRM, Talemetry. Talemetry by Jobvite leverages AI-powered candidate matching to identify a list of top prospects found in a client’s CRM based on the requirements in the job description and reviewing previous hires from similar positions.

Assessments and Talent Intelligence

The assessment market is heating up again, and companies have better options today. Employee and candidate-friendly assessments that are still backed by science are the future of this market. It was exciting to see all of the assessment innovations at this year’s event. One provider that presented with Whirlpool was Plum. Plum empowers people to use their full potential at work. By looking at human potential data, they provide value to both recruitment and retention strategies. Its universal assessment is 25 minutes and supports the full talent lifecycle. As a result, Whirlpool experienced a 78% increase in the hiring of unrepresented minorities.

High-Volume Recruitment

Traditional recruitment technology and applicant tracking systems (ATS) are not designed for high-volume candidates. So, it is no surprise that 65% of high-volume recruitment needs are not satisfied with their current ATS. Most traditional ATS systems are designed for traditional corporate hiring and lack capabilities to support high-volume recruitment such as programmatic advertising, scheduling, or communication. High-volume recruitment technology must be simple, intuitive, and mobile-responsive. The fewer systems that companies need to manage, the better. Eighty-two percent (82%) of companies with high-volume hiring needs are increasing their investment in technology this year. Two providers to check out in high-volume are AMS Hourly and Fountain.

Hiring (Interview to Offer)

Hiring is one of the most critical and most neglected areas of talent acquisition. Companies invest significantly in recruitment marketing, sourcing, and ATS solutions but often ignore the experience and decision-making that begins during the interview and hiring process. Several companies are dedicated to creating a new category of hiring solutions. These providers offer innovative solutions in areas such as interviewing, assessments, measurement, and offer.

Wedge: Wedge provides on-demand video interviewing solutions to organizations in the SMB and mid-market. It offers seamless ATS integration, a simple experience, and a great team. It has invested in the product significantly over the past year with 12 new features.

HireVue: With its roots in digital interviewing, HireVue has evolved into a hiring experience platform with products and capabilities that include interviewing, assessments, conversational AI and communication (throughout the candidate lifecycle), and insights. It launched Builder this year, a product to support structured interviews and allow companies the flexibility to add their interview questions in this model. In addition, its Hiring Assistant (through the acquisition of AllyO) includes a recruiter assistant, scheduling assistant, and job search assistant. HireVue has also launched a text-to-apply feature and text-based assessments.

Compa: Compa was a favorite at this year’s event. A strong contender in the Pitchfest, Compa is transforming offer management by giving candidates more transparency around their offers and pay decisions. For any company struggling to find talent or hire talent because of pay, Compa is worth a look. It empowers HR and talent acquisition teams, to get smarter about the offer management process and connect with candidates in a more authentic way. Recruiters can use Compa at any stage in the talent acquisition process.

Conversational AI

If you follow any of our research, then you know how passionate we are about conversational AI. Conversational AI is not as complex or complicated as organizations may think. It is already an integrated part of the consumer experience and personal lives through assistants like Siri, Alexa, and others. It offers the same value and assistance to talent acquisition, and HR and over 40% of enterprise companies are considering this investment this year. The future of conversational AI is not in a point solution but in a platform that improves the employer and employee/candidate experience. Two providers that are doing this well include Paradox and Socrates.

Paradox: Paradox is a leading conversational AI. It continues to be the favorite in this market with its strong product roadmap, exceptional customer support, and vision for the future of TA. While many of its competitors have been acquired this year, Paradox is expanding its use cases beyond talent acquisition and helping build awareness of this category of technology.

Socrates: Socrates is a provider helping to solve the challenges facing HR, IT, and Employees. I was genuinely impressed with this provider and its innovative approach to employee experience through a conversational methodology. It uses technologies such as text, enterprise chat solutions, intranet portals, and voice. is not a bot toolkit or another point solution. Instead, it pulls all your HR and benefits information together into one simplified hub. It cleans and rewrites all content to make it more relevant for employees and integrates with every major HR and communication platform.

Employee Experience and Feedback

My friend, Tim Sackett, wrote about the number of coaching providers at this year’s event. I didn’t realize how big of a category this was becoming but considering the events of the past year, it makes sense. Companies need to be able to provide better coaching opportunities to leaders. Sounding Board is one provider I met with that has a growing network of over 200 coaches and AI-powered admin tools and centralized data insights to deliver coaching at scale.

The other big category in employee experience and candidate experience is feedback. We found that only 1 in 2 candidates receive feedback in the hiring process, and most employees only receive feedback once a year during the performance review.

Joyous: Joyous, founded by Michael Cardin (Sonar6), allows employees to own their feedback and experience. Joyous has a straightforward goal…to make life better at work. Through conversations and building a culture of psychological safety where everyone feels comfortable with getting and sharing feedback. The original vision of Joyous was to support Agile organizations, but every company can benefit from this type of collaboration and communication.

Programmatic Job Advertising

Programmatic buying has changed the face of job advertising. It has helped companies save costs, streamline job advertising, target the right candidates and maximize ROI. While traditional job advertising increases spend, programmatic reduces it. Once companies move to a programmatic model, they are unlikely to go back to a manual one. Programmatic was a HUGE topic of conversation last week, and it is exciting to see more awareness for this growing category of HR Tech. Providers like Appcast, Pandologic, and Vonq are leaders in the space and all had a presence at the event.

Internal Mobility

Companies can provide a fairer hiring process and make smarter hiring decisions to enrich upskilling and internal mobility. Companies can also identify skills gaps across the organization to plan and prepare for the future. As companies look closely at their hiring strategies for 2021 and beyond, skills-based hiring and internal mobility is a priority. Unfortunately, many providers offer basic capabilities in this area that include dedicated career sites and personalized communication to internal hires. Few providers go deeper with skills frameworks and career development. This webinar will include new research on skills-based hiring and internal mobility. It will address the challenges that companies face, the strategies they should consider, and the technology that enables success. Worqdrive was another Pitchfest favorite that is tackling internal mobility and retention.

One other provider taking an innovative approach to HR Tech is GraceBlocks. GraceBlocks is designed for talent operations professionals. It makes it easy to build and deploy systems that work for users including simple HRMS extensions and fully designed tracking systems.

It is an exciting time to be in HR Technology and I am looking forward to 2022!