UK Recuitment Technology trends

A visit back to the UK saw me catching up with old friends, colleagues and industry pundits in the recruitment technology field. Keeping our clients and products up with the market trends is very important to us and this was a good opportunity to get some advice on what the leading edge players are thinking about.
Am in the UK currently and been taking opportunity to talk to old contacts and movers and shakers in this mad industry + of course seeing our UK partners. Whilst it would be unfair to say UK/USA is way ahead in recruiting tech - it does seem to be delight in being at the leading edge and being open to innovation. So it was a good chance to spend time looking at where our product range stands against its peers.

The big surprise for me was that in some respects its back to basics. Those in the know - so to speak - say the corporate careers portal / jobsite is getting more focus back. For us it never really went away, however with all the attention; social media, video interviewing and candidate apps have been getting the last few years the Corporate Careers Site/ Portal sort of slipped down the list. However several of those I spoke to were talking about how it is becoming even more important than ever to have a good corporate careers portal/ site as a hub/destination for candidates as a back stop. It seems clients have realised that a facebook page and social media campaign is not quite enough on its own...

So what are clients being advised to look at when looking at their Careers sites:
  • Make it easy for candidates to browse jobs. Don’t use force them to use search forms and complicated the search. Seemingly candidates want to be able to look through your list of vacancies rather than search for a specific role. We can configure your FBC supplied sites to do this all sorts of ways. We can do various types of listings fro browsing and also supply search forms. However the advice I was getting was that a simple automated list of open vacancies with links is the most suitable for most sites.
  • Tell candidates what it is like to work at your company. I have to say many of our clients under estimate the importance of this aspect of their sites and we quite often have to make a big case for them to include it. Its not rocket science - Candidates want to find out what it will be like to work in your business, what the people in your business are like and use this to determine if they will fit in. Social networking and referrals can also be very useful in this respect but candidates also expect to get this from your careers site/portal.
  • Similar to above - Employee Profiles and Career Case Studies. We know from our own observations and other research that these pages get read if they are included.
  • The recruitment process. Tell them what t expect. It can lessen possible frustration with guessing and waiting for what will happen. I would also submit that it can also be a useful form of compliance/ protection in making polices and processes very visible up front. We always recommend this and most of our clients have at least an outline in their sites. However I was advised that sites with more information tend to attract more and better quality applicants - so a bit of effort is well worth while.
  • Make it possible, easy for candidates to keep in touch. Social Networking / facebook apps and Talent Pools all help with this of course. But managing Applications, Registrations with email responders and contact forms all help. We know that clients who regularly use the mail links provided in their Talent Pools and Careers Portals fill roles faster and say they get less candidate withdrawals later in the process.
  • Lastly - Mobile. From what we are hearing mobile is being used more to view and scout out jobs rather than a platform to apply for them from. In this respect its use if growing. Most sites setup for desktop use don’t render very well on mobiles and intelligent switching to dedicated mobile sites is it seems increasingly the norm for savvy employers. This is a very interesting aspect for us. It appears that the role for mobile is more for candidates doing their initial search rather than providing them with a mobile application platform. Our stance at FBC has been that with mobiles like the iphone and ipad not able to upload files though the browser that we provide recommend providing registration facilities only on mobile. The small screen also severely restricts the practical use of forms on the screen. Its seems that even the most leading edge clients are finding that whilst mobile usage has increased it is being used for candidates scouting out jobs and not as a platform for making applications.

Another interesting aspect discussed on my travels was the future for job boards. Their demise has often been predicted (though not by us) and seems the facilities being offered are now quite mature and I was struggling to find examples of material recent innovation. There was no talk of them going away as was the case a few years ago. I made a post in January - Recruitment - predictions for 2012 and beyond - Part 2 - and fortunately my view then was broadly in line with current thinking from those I spoke to.

So as outlined above its back to basics - from our perspective its good news as we have very strong capabilities in each of the above areas that we can deploy for our clients. If you are one of our clients and would like to add some more content after reading this to your site please get in touch. Additions and changes are generally free for those clients contracted under our “fair use policy”.