If there is one thing you can be certain of in the recruiting industry, it’s that change is a constant. The economic climate, unemployment rates and the talent pool fluctuate, sometimes dramatically and in a very short time. Changes in technology can also have a major impact on recruitment methods. Whether the changes are the result of new technology or market conditions, however, recruiters must adapt if they want to stay competitive and secure the best candidates. Looking back on the first quarter of 2015 brought to light some trends we expect to see continue through the rest of the year and that recruiters might want to consider when planning their strategies.
1. Declining unemployment rates coupled with an easing of the recession have shifted much of the control back to the candidates. According to a report issued by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, on the final business day in February 2015, employers reported 5.13 million job openings — more than any month since January 2001. Hires were reported at 4.91 million, meaning that job openings were outpacing hiring, especially for highly skilled jobs. The "talent war" for the most skilled employees is likely to escalate even further during 2015.
2. Big data and analytics have begun to play an important (and expanding) role in recruiting. Although analytics-driven recruitment is still in its infancy, more and more companies are applying the lessons learned from harnessing big data for marketing, sales and other business endeavors. During 2015, recruiters will continue to fine-tune their processes to optimize their acquisition of the best talent.
3. Efforts to recruit passive candidates have increased, but many recruiters are overlooking this method of finding desirable candidates. According to a survey conducted by LinkedIn, 75 percent of all professionals indicated they would be willing to change jobs; 61 percent of the companies responding stated that they recruit passive candidates. Gallup polls report that a mere 13 percent of all employees surveyed report that they are "engaged by their work," indicating that there is a vast untapped pool of qualified candidates who would be willing to change employers but are not actively seeking another position. Recruiters are expected to ramp up their efforts over the coming months to reach out to passive candidates, especially for hard-to-fill positions.
4. The more the market favors the candidates, the more recruiters will need to connect with them "where they are." Social media has become a valuable tool for recruiters, but in 2015, expect to see them put more effort into becoming experts at using sites such as LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and nice job boards/branding for both active and passive recruiting. A Jobvite study revealed that just 18 percent of recruiters considered themselves "social recruiting experts" although 83 percent stated they currently used social media sites for hiring or plan to do so in the near future.
5. Having a mobile recruitment strategy and sites optimized for mobile have ceased to be optional. In April 2015, Google will expand its use of a site's "mobile friendliness" when ranking search results. Sites that are not mobile-optimized will rank lower in the results, meaning that recruiters risk missing some excellent candidates. Furthermore, as far back as July 2014, "USA Today" reported that more than 80 percent of job seekers use their tablets or smartphones as part of their job searches. Recruiters will need to cater to mobile users to reach the deepest pool of candidates.
In 2015, many recruiters expect to have both a higher volume of hiring and a larger budget. Embracing change may well be the most important key to finding the best candidates in a proactive — rather than a reactive — manner. Is 2015 going to be the year when you transition from scrambling for candidates while in crisis mode to building a deep pool of candidates that you can tap whenever you need? Pay attention to what we’ve learned so far can help make sure you stay in control and formulate a winning strategy.
Join FirstJob & GreenHouse on May 13th at 11AM PST/2PM EST for a webinar titled: Hiring Hacks: Three Strategies to Hire Millennials - And Why You Need To Do It.
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