Data-based decision making can help recruiters thrive but it is not a natural fit for all recruiters to excel in their jobs. They have to rely on soft skills, their instinct and powers of judgement. Like it or not hard data is more than likely to play an increasingly more important part in their lives, in the same way the internet became a big part in recruiters lives and it killed of all of the bad recruiters over the last 10 years but allowed all the best ones to thrive and it is predicted that data will have the same effect by letting the good recruiters thrive and the bad ones will slowly die out over the next 10 years.
Data has a part to play in the vast majority of business decisions, it is not a case of switching recruiters’ instinct off and all human behaviours used to arrive at a conclusion but using them in tandem with hard evidence. Gilles Guest believes that in 5 to 10 years’ time big data will take over most of the decision making in recruitment. “There are simply no downsides to using data correctly” he says “there cannot be. Data is truth nothing more, nothing less and as soon as it is treated like that much more business advantage will be gained from it.” Dan McGuire says that in an ideal world business decisions will be based on data “That’s not to says you need to look at a report every time you want to do something, a lot of data is already in your head or known by someone else on your team” he says “If you’re making decisions based on gut feeling alone it should be done because no data exists to support those decisions that need to be made there and then.”
Who is responsible for this data?
Well that is simply everyone. Each department will have its own system and there therefore its own data, it’s down to each one to work out how it can be put to the best use for their respective function but also the business as a whole, collaboration across different departments makes the data potentially even more powerful. If responsibility is assigned to one person or one department it is important that the individuals can be as much as a business partner as they are a data specialist. Organisations need people who done just create and analyse datasets but understand how you can use the data to influence the business and decision making.
Even though data can help recruiters thrive, business and recruiters need to ensure that they don’t use bad data. Bad data is data that is out of data, duplicated, miss formatted, badly structured or just simply incorrect. According to Experian Data Quality inaccurate can lose a business as much as 12% of revenue, to ensure that individuals have the necessary tools to extract and exploit data. A range of business intelligence tools and real-time dashboards make the process of extracting and analysing data for more accessibility, James Ballard explained that Annapurna the training and development manager invests a lot of time into helping individuals become masters of their system and able to extrapolate reports and information.
Getting good people to apply for jobs is becoming harder and this will have an impact on organisations’ bottom lines. In the March of 2015 labour market statistics vacancies reached an all-time high. In November to January 2014 there were four unemployed people for every vacancy but this year the ratio stands at 2.6 unemployed people for every vacancy. Data shows that in the last year recruiters report permanent and temporary availability is worse when compared to the previous month. The search for suitable candidates will be different given the reduction in the pool of candidates actively looking for a role and the contraction in the number of candidates. Ensuring candidates have a positive experience is one way that recruiters can ensure that they have the competitive advantage to source candidates.
The CandE awards reports found that approximately one in there candidates would be willing to speak about a negative experience. This is clearly not only an issue for just the resourcing team, in a report by Boston Consulting Group improved recruiting, on boarding and employer branding can lead to just over a 3 times increase in revenue. If this is the future the challenge will be to accurately define who the candidate is and what they are looking for in a new role.