Most recruiters choose the profession for one reason: They enjoy working with people. They lead the pack in collaborating, listening, and communicating and thrive from personal interaction. Yet for many, the amount of time dedicated to understanding and interacting with candidates has become minimal in comparison to everything else on the to-do list.

In today’s uncertain and still highly virtual times, the need for human interaction is greater than ever before. There has been a lot of discussion around the impact of the pandemic on organizations, specifically on recruiting strategies. It is important to also take note of the current sentiment among the growing pool of candidates. Just like recruiters will face, or are already facing, high volumes of applications, candidates will face or are already facing high volumes of recruitment activities, whether initiated by them or the organizations with which they are engaging.

Many say this unprecedented shift means that the power now lies with the employer. But candidates have also shifted the way they evaluate their future employers. Even before the global pandemic, IDC research showed that 35 percent of candidates consider social, environmental, and humanitarian actions as key criteria for what matters most when searching for a job. That sentiment of “what really matters” is only growing to include stability, flexibility, and transparency.

Whether recruiting for a single opening, hundreds of openings, or looking internally to fill the gaps, the challenge remains. How do you deliver the right candidate experience to attract the right talent? And how do you ensure they select you when you select them?

This is where technology comes into play. The twist is that the goal of technology is not to replace those personal interactions that are so important in today’s times. The goal of technology is to increase efficiency across the entire recruiting continuum to first ensure those interactions are as meaningful as possible and second free up time for recruiters to focus on the area they know best – finding the right match for an organization.

Looking across the end-to-end recruiting process, powered by SAP SuccessFactors Recruiting and the partner ecosystem, several examples of capabilities are designed to increase recruiter efficiency:

  • Planning: Evergreen and duplicate requisitions, anti-bias job description language and salary recommendations driven by artificial intelligence (AI)
  • Sourcing: Global job board distribution, talent pool recommendations, behavioral-based nurture campaigns, automated applicant communications and notifications
  • Screening: Embedded pre-screening questions, automated applicant ranking, automated removal of EEOC identifiers
  • Selecting: Next-stage workflow automation, integrated interview scheduling, automated creation and distribution of interview guides, automated feedback rankings
  • Hiring: Mass-initiation of offers and approvals, digital offers with e-signature through SAP Signature Management by DocuSign
  • Onboarding: Automated initiation for new hires

Together these capabilities help to eliminate countless hours of tactical recruiting tasks and reduce cycle times while improving the outputs. This allows for acting more strategically and focusing time where it matters most – getting to know potential future employees.

1. Better understand audiences and how best to engage with them

Spend time evaluating the types of candidates you are attracting and how they are or are not engaging. Use analytics to see which sources are resulting in new hires and the path required to get there. Review both external and internal career sites to ensure messaging is a true representation of what is important to the company. Create, test, and tweak audience-specific landing pages to increase the engagement with specific applicant pools.

2. Increase personal interaction time with top candidates and hiring managers

Focus more time on the upfront intake process. What skills and certifications are needed to be successful in this job? What has worked and not worked with employees in similar roles? What questions will really help determine if a candidate is a good match? Then spend more time talking with top candidates — and maybe extending that list — to really gauge if they will be a good fit, not just on paper but culturally.

3. Gain insights into how people feel about the company and candidate experience

Take advantage of the opportunity the career site presents for gathering feedback from those you are trying to attract. Was is easy to find what they needed? Do they have a clear understanding of what the company does and the opportunities available? Are they clear on next steps once they apply? Do not limit this feedback channel to those who make it through your entire process. With the SAP Qualtrics Employee Lifecycle solution, embedded surveys and the resulting insights can be leveraged to know if you are making the most of first impressions or missing the mark.

4. Continually optimize and measure

Having insights and ideas is one thing; having the time to put them into practice is a game changer. Move to a more strategic approach of evaluating the candidate experience from end to end and reviewing on a continuous basis. Make sure you are leveraging all available capabilities to make it as convenient and easy as possible for future employees. And if you identify a gap or bottleneck, spend time resolving it versus working around it.

A good recruiter has a keen sense of communicating the right message and selecting the right talent but needs the right tools to be successful. For recruiters who are struggling to focus on what really matters – interacting with candidates in meaningful and impactful ways – it is time for a change.

To learn how to redesign a recruiting strategy to increase efficiency and drive better outcomes, explore the IDC InfoBrief on Recruiting and Human Experience Management: Adopting a Modern and Strategic Approach in Today’s Unprecedented Times.

Carrie Klauss is senior manager of Solution Marketing for SAP SuccessFactors.