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Dive in candidate screening process 2020

Candidate screening plays a big role in hiring. According to the Adecco research, one corporate job listing attracts 250 applicants, on average. This high application volume can be overwhelming for recruiters and leaves them with only 7.4 seconds to review each resume they see. In a high-unemployment climate like today’s, this problem is exacerbated. Recruiting requires heavy lifting, and there’s no denying that various forms of AI (such as machine learning, a subset of AI) and automation are playing much bigger roles these days for hiring teams.

Harvard Business Review says many of these technologies promise to help organizations improve their ability to find the right person for the right job, and screen out the wrong people for the wrong jobs, faster and cheaper than ever before.

With essential changes in technology making their presence felt across all aspects of work, the candidate screening guide and selection process has been on a sure-footed path to evolution over the course of the last decade. While the holistic process and strategy around recruitment have been elevated, the changes are more apparent in the initial stages of screening and selection, where technology can come closer to augmenting or even replacing human intervention. So, let’s take a look at the main steps in the selection process.

Preliminary screening definition

Preliminary screening that is conducted (whether by the human eye or by Artificial Intelligence) involves a look at the qualifications, which may include work experience, academic background, skills, knowledge base, personality, behavior-indicative traits, and competencies. Those who do not match the requirements are eliminated from the selection process.

Time is money. This is true in all walks of life and it’s no different in hiring. The cost of hiring a new employee can be very high, and one of the biggest reasons is the time it takes. With that in mind, there is a hiring metric that deserves your full attention and we’re pretty much sure you are already aware of what is screening process.

Despite major headway in technology, screening still happens to be the most time-intensive aspect of hiring with an average hiring decision taking about 23 hours of screening time. This is with the current size of recruitment teams of about three to four people, and they are predicted to only get smaller as more organizations pick up on the «doing more with less» philosophy.

Another metric to keep in mind is that the best talent stays on the market for only up to 10 days. All these numbers indicate that screening should start taking a lot less time, a lot sooner! Automated resume screeners like Manatal or ApplicantPro can help to significantly decrease the time and effort for application screening.

Benefits of AI used for screening

Artificial Intelligence became a vital need for fast-growing companies with a big number of hires. Some AI-driven tools, like Employa can provide a greater value than just saving time and money. By using AI for pre-screening you can get a bunch of advantages:

  • Shorten time to hire by 35%
  • Reduce the cost of hire by 27%
  • Check real skills instead of buzzwords
  • Identify all the gaps and fraud in CVs
  • Engage candidates in dialogue
  • Enable candidates to track their progress
  • Eliminate bias

Sourcing is not only the first step towards improving candidate experience but also the most critical. Feed faulty input into any process and, as you might expect, the outcome will inevitably be flawed. This generally accepted principle called GIGO or «Garbage in, garbage out» is just as at home in HR as it is in computer science. By blindly accepting high volumes of unqualified incoming candidates, you limit your ability to be selective. Without infinite applicant pools and with practical constraints, your recruiters and hiring managers have a limited amount of time to spend judging the relative quality of each applicant.

Shally Steckerl, President of The Sourcing Institute

How to prepare for screening candidates for interview

To make the pre-screening process clear and efficient, recruiters need to define selection criteria and its importance. Also, it’s crucial to understand the role of soft skills for the certain vacancy and how it can be measured. Usually, recruiters are focused on the following criteria:

  • Years of experience/relevant education
  • Seniority/company size
  • Achievements/seniority
  • Skills
  • Job hopping

Screening interview

According to the screening interview definition by Indeed, it is a part of the job selection process used by employers to determine if a candidate has the qualifications necessary to do the job for which the company is hiring. The screening interview is typically the first interview during the hiring process.

AI Recruitment technology and candidate screening

Businesses that invest time and effort in their hiring process saw a 70% improvement in the quality of talent they recruited.

There are many advantages to be gained from incorporating technology and candidate screening into your recruitment process. Matching the right candidate to the best-fit role is significant now more than ever , therefore make it necessary for the tech arena to uplift candidate screening. Automated resume screening increases quality of hire by reducing false positives because candidates can’t trick the ATS through keyword stuffing. It also reduces the false negatives because candidates with good qualifications no longer slip through the keyword filters. AI screening software learns how to predict the quality of hire because it’s able to analyze your historical hiring decisions as well as learn from your current hiring decisions. Companies that have adopted AI software in their recruiting have seen their performance increase by 20% and their turnover decrease by 35% on top of that they drastically improve the employment selection process.

It seems clear that any process with directly quantifiable or distinctly qualifiable input and output mechanisms like AI usage for screening (where you know exactly what you’re looking for) definitely is one of the most versatile tools businesses have at their disposal. Companies across different industries are using AI to bolster digital marketing efforts, automate workflows, boost cyber-security, and engage website visitors.

With the rise of the smart recruiter and of AI recruiting tools, administrative activities that demand a greater investment of time can now be outsourced to non-human technology.
Automated resume screening results in high quality and the best fit candidates for the position that will proceed for the next stage of the selection process — screening interview.

At first glance, AI is just a tool for faster learning and operational excellence. Good HR leaders and other senior executives will both leverage it to improve operational efficiency and speed of transformation, and to affirm trust and respect from operational lines of management.

Dr. Robert Winterhalter, Ph.D., Global Leader, Human Resources Practice Managing Partner, Boyden Germany

Selection process

Let’s have a look at screening VS selection and find out what the main differences are.

A screening system usually serves to eliminate applicants who do not meet the minimum qualifications specified by the carrier and normally precedes the selection system. An applicant must complete the screening process successfully before beginning the selection process. For example, assume an air carrier indicates that an applicant must have 1200 total hours to be considered. Despite this specification, some pilots with less than 1200 hours apply. The screening system identifies these individuals immediately and eliminates them from further consideration.

Selection is the process of choosing the right candidate on the shortlist, who is most suitable for a job requirement. In other words, it’s a pre-final step of the hiring process, when candidates talk to team leads or potential direct managers. At this stage, companies can ask candidates to work on test tasks to see his real potential.

It’s important that hiring managers are confident in the robustness of a pre-hire assessment and trust that data that it provides. In a survey by Indeed in 2018, 28% of employers said that gut feel was the main reason they hired a candidate. While intuition can be useful, it must be used with caution and be backed up by rational data to find the most suitable candidate fairly.

How good your screening process is, has a direct impact on your recruitment conversion rates. According to the Indeed report, on average, conversion rates are about 12% (application to interview), 17% (interview to offer), and 89% (offer to acceptance and placement). Thus, if you screened 100 candidates and shortlisted 12 of them for the interview, two would receive an offer, and (hopefully) one would accept. The right AI tools can streamline the sourcing and recruiting process, providing a better candidate experience, and keeping your organization ahead in the tight talent landscape.

With the volume of candidate screening and selection tools in the market, it is easy to often go for enterprise-backed best practices and technology. However, it is important to ask what works for your organization. Best practices may not be the best fit for you. With candidate screening and selection processes, it is thus important to devise a structured method that is a balance of human values and AI qualities, that drives the employer brand forward and helps you start a dialogue with top talent.

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