HR Technology Q & A with Chip Luman

With the HR Technology Conference (#HRTechConf) just around the corner, we're inviting our Next Official Bloggers to offer their perspective on how technology is impacting the profession today -- and their predictions for the future.

The following is a Q & A with Chip Luman:

Q:  As technology evolves, what do you think the future of recruiting will look like?  Will software programs and computers replace recruiters?

CL:  Recruiting will definitely become more automated. Recruiters will still have a role but for many it will be very different than today. Human selection is prone to human bias and technology and data science can deliver more objective assessments of KSA's. With better analysis and recommendations driven by technology, recruiters and hiring managers will spend more time on building relationships and effectively getting the candidate onboard the team.  

Q:  Is an applicant tracking system still the single most important piece of technology an HR pro can have? Why or why not?

CL:  Without fail the ATS is the system that everyone loves to hate. I think this is primarily because the workflow continues to lag behind the way candidates want to interact with a company and vice versa. Most people that I talk to see the ATS as a system of record for tracking their applicant flow log, a necessary evil. They are working in other technology and ask to have it integrated into the ATS, but usually only so disposition records are up to date. I see more people using video platforms and CRM technology as their primary tools to engage with candidates.

Q:  What steps can an HR professional take to begin to incorporate mobile technology into their talent management strategies?

CL:  If they haven't started already they are too late. No pilots, no ROI study, just do it. The future is already here, most surveys show that mobile technology is the primary internet access for many households. Land lines are disappearing as the cell phone replaces them. Netflix and Amazon have become major media networks as people cut the cable. Mobile device sales continue to grow. HR professionals need to educate themselves on what mobile technology is available to them, but more importantly, to their employees and potential employees and build a plan to deploy as soon as possible. People have their mobile technology with them everywhere, why wouldn't HR want to be one more notification popping up on the third screen?

Q:  What area of Human Resources profession (recruiting, OD/Training, comp/benefits, employee relations, etc.) do you see technology affecting the most in the next 5 years?  

CL:  All of the above. Corporations have spent decades digitizing information and today's cloud storage and computing power has created the ability to mine that data for trends and predictions. A lot of analyst and data management jobs will disappear in HR the same way as they will in other functions. HR will need people that can interpret data and build strategies from the information provided by technology and data scientists. HR needs to be part of the shift from looking back at historical data toward real time analysis of the effectiveness of it programs. Firms that can adjust the fastest will win in the market and what better place than in the area of talent.

Q:  What are the advantages of combining both HR professionals and technology process experts to design software that will address HR’s future challenges?

CL:  Engaging end users is a critical step for successfully designing any kind of software, especially when building technology for enterprise customers. It is important for technologists to envision a different and better future but product designers must also take into account that many enterprise customers are currently operating a few generations behind today's technology. Simple browser based software may not even function because an enterprise is still as many as 4 versions behind on their current browser and IT won't let users upgrade or opt for an alternate. By working together, HR professionals and technology experts may find a path to leap frog existing roadblocks.

The SHRM Blog does not accept solicitation for guest posts.

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