The high volume headache - The high volume headache
THE HIGH VOLUME HEADACHE
When we talk to employers about their high volume recruitment needs, you can literally see the associated challenges reflected in their facial expressions. While finding niche, scarce skills is tough enough, the sheer magnitude of work that goes into high volume recruitment processes makes it one of talent acquisition professionals’ least favourite tasks.
One of the primary reasons for this is that effective workforce planning remains an elusive goal for many large organisations. The challenge for internal recruiters is to remain equally responsive to all business functions when there are conflicting volume priorities and limited options to scale at short notice. How do you drive proactive talent pooling when the population moves so quickly and a lack of workforce planning regularly places you in reactive mode?
In addition, recruiters need to create a meaningful candidate experience yet hiring managers often fail to understand their responsibilities in this process. Screening every candidate who has applied for your roles is the aim, but most people lack the time required to do so. On one hand you are so flooded with applicants for metropolitan roles that you cannot respond to everyone, while on the other there is a shortage of the right talent for regional jobs.
How to overcome these challenges and succeed
So, what are the key success factors in the world of high volume recruitment? The first step is an effective job analysis to ensure that each role description accurately reflects the job and is aligned to the broader business strategy. The best place to start is by talking to employees who are currently in the roles you are reviewing. This gives you relevant insights into any gaps between the job description and what the role requires in reality.
Next, ensure you have robust selection practices in place that remove any biases and deliver consistent, objective and fair assessment against a fixed set of criteria. Design bespoke assessments that give you a holistic view of each candidate and their ability to meet the requirements of the job, both now and in the future.
While a growing number of AI tools allow you to assess every candidate application within minutes, it is important to ensure that hiring leaders have the necessary skills to select and recruit the right people. Therefore, offer coaching and provide reliable and validated interview content. After all, poor assessment practices will only lower candidate quality due to the inadequate evaluation of all critical attributes.
Thirdly, given that candidates can also be your customers, it is important to design all talent acquisition practices and processes around the candidate experience. Recruiters need to identify candidate suitability quickly, rather than failing to inform a candidate of their progress. So, make sure you engage with them through every step of the process with multi-faceted communication plans supported by technology alerts. Survey every single candidate, not just those who were successful, and use this data to continuously review your processes.
Finally, understand the ability of emerging technology to improve the candidate experience. With the right use of technology, the infamous communications black hole disappears and you can engage with and respond to all applicants meaningfully. Technology plays a critical role in high volume recruitment, provided you have a deep understanding of the candidate journey and where to apply digital versus human engagement.
Given all this, it is understandable that companies are outsourcing their high-volume recruitment to RPO providers – such as ourselves. RPO's provide the right level of high volume focus and expertise, freeing up a business and internal talent acquisition teams to focus on core and strategic roles. RPO providers also stay on top of the latest emerging technology and have a suite of tools that you can access and implement to drive better outcomes. After all, given the rapid rate of workforce change, flexibility and scalability remain highly relevant key benefits.
As I mentioned above, candidates are often your consumers. Therefore, you can't afford not to give them the best possible engagement experience with your brand. High volume recruitment is fun, fast-paced and requires a lot of energy! But it's not for everyone – so, if it’s a challenge for you or your organisation, perhaps you could consider the outsourcing route?
Client Solutions Director - RPO, Australia, Hays Talent Solutions
Paula has fulfilled multiple leadership roles in the recruitment industry and has spent the last 8 years specialising in the design and execution of MSP/RPO solutions.
Prior to that Paula has performed senior sales and leadership roles in traditional recruitment. Her strength lies in strategic level sales, sales leadership and overall business leadership. She has experience leading a start up business in the South African market, growing it into a very successful brand - employing over 150 staff.