HR increasingly turning to tech to recruit

Tackling recruitment problems now rank as one of the top three business priorities among firms across Europe, according to a new survey.

robot hand meets human hand
In the UK, 38 per cent of companies surveyed regarded hiring the right skills as a major challenge, with some 47 per cent of vacancies now being filled by promotions of existing staff.The survey, conducted among nearly 3,000 business leaders in more than a dozen European nations by human resources specialist and international payroll services provider SD Worx, also found that HR professionals were increasingly turning to AI to help them find the right people for the job.Colette Philp, the company's HR lead for the UK, said: “While businesses have been reinvigorated as we emerge from Covid-19 restrictions, they are now facing scaling challenges. Hiring drives and talent shortages in the market are putting pressure on HR professionals to fight for the right people in the war for talent.“We’re seeing that digital HR can be one of the greatest assets in an HR professional’s toolkit to help select, manage and onboard candidates, but many companies are lagging behind, or not exploring valuable opportunities in outsourcing recruitment work."Looking for ways to diversify HR practices and leverage tools and outsourcing will prove vital for recruitment in the coming months and years.”

The survey found that UK respondents were now turning to technology to help them prioritise recruitment, with a third investing in a high degree of HR digitalisation for recruitment, and one in 20 now using AI, robots or digital assistants in the recruitment and selection processes."When it comes to internal recruitment and skills planning, nearly a third of UK businesses are using digital applications and smart systems to predict which talents are needed in certain departments," added SD Worx."More than one in ten companies are using a personnel planning tool that enables them to plan their workforce and achieve optimal staffing levels and a similar number use a talent management system that keeps track of the skills they have in-house and which skills they are still missing."The survey showed that more than half of companies in Switzerland and Ireland are now more likely to fill a new profile internally than externally, while almost half of firms Austria, Italy and the UK are currently finding someone within their own ranks to fill approximately 50 per cent of their vacancies.Internal mobility, although increasing, was found to be less common in Belgium, Spain, France and the Netherlands.A separate survey in the UK by talent sourcing site, found that three-quarters of hiring managers reported that the cost of recruiting workers had increased throughout this year. Only eight per cent reported decreasing costs with 17 per cent reporting no change.Noura Dadzie, UK and international markets vice-president at, said: “At a time when skills shortages are evident across the UK, many hiring managers are pumping investment into recruitment activities in the hope that this alone will give them an edge over the competition.However, as the war for talent intensifies, and recruitment strategies evolve, recruitment budgets must be directed in a targeted and effective way for businesses to benefit from any tangible return on this investment.“Talent acquisition professionals must focus on making data driven decisions, so that resources and budgets can be allocated in the most efficient way.
"It is vital that Applicant Tracking Systems are used effectively, marketing spend should be highly targeted, and the potential of partnership networks needs to be maximised."When it comes to technology, investment should be directed towards streamlining the candidate journey to minimise attrition."

Read more news and views from David Sapsted

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