e-recruitment 2021

How the pandemic has changed recruitment

I read several articles on how recruitment “changed overnight.” They say recruiting through online marketing and social media and conducting virtual interviews are here to stay. Out with the old and in with the new.

Recruitment has not changed “overnight.” Even before the pandemic, our industry was moving toward more technical processes. At industry conferences, the main topic was how artificial intelligence and virtual recruitment had affected recruitment and interview processes and we were debating whether the efficiency of databases and analytics outweighed personalized service. That was followed up with articles and blogs espousing the same messages.

We were already using applicant tracking systems (ATS), text messages, emails, social media, and online media to attract talent and build our database. Traditional methods — personalized conversations, networking, and building relationships — were becoming less of a priority.

This was not an overnight shift — the pandemic just prompted us to realign and implement new strategies more quickly.

Even though there are really great ideas, processes, and practices that have come out of the pandemic. It has also brought new frustrations.

CHALLENGES we are facing

  • It has become more difficult to build trusting relationships with lasting results. In-person conversations build trust better than Zoom calls.
  • We have lost the ability to have water cooler talks, so we are no longer able to hear people’s stories and find opportunities to help them.
  • It is harder to make a phone call as there is often no one on the other end.
  • It is more difficult to read body language — even if you have really good emotional intelligence, you cannot pick up all the cues during a video call.
  • Video calls are exhausting and take up a whole lot of energy.
  • Sending a message through LinkedIn or email is a safe method to reach out to potential candidates without getting shut down, but it displaces opportunities for direct, open conversations. In-person – or at least, live – conversations produce the best results!

POSITIVE takeaways

  • Social media and online marketing is a very effective way to promote your company and find potential candidates.
  • We have made better use of our time by meeting through video calls, etc.
  • But nobody wants to be on video calls all day, every day. So we ensure our meetings are effective and efficient — no more having a meeting about having a meeting!

A BLEND is best.

The pandemic has taught us that we need to have a blend. I believe personal, trusting relationships are the backbone of our success, and our company will continue to focus on this. However, we have also picked up a few great ideas, better processes, and new methods along the way.

It is not out with the old and in with the new — we should use the best of both.

Published: January 15, 2021
Updated: April 30, 2022