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The Future of Recruitment: Where will recruitment be in 7 years time?

#truLondon logoSo another chaotic but successful #TruLondon has come and gone. The tracks have been led, the discussions have been filmed and lots of beer has been drunk! One of the defining tracks of this year’s #Tru asked a question that is extremely relevant to all of us in the recruiting and sourcing game: Where will recruitment be in 7 years time? In other words, what does the year 2020 hold for recruitment and recruiters? Where is our industry going? Bearing in mind that 7 years ago it was 2006 and still ahead of us we had the birth and growth of social media and one of the biggest financial depressions in history!

The question and the resulting debate seemed to capture the imagination of the attendees and produce many strong opinions on the issue, all of which stemmed from 3 rather stark predictions from #Tru founder, Bill Boorman:

1. In 2020, Hiring Managers will use automated tools to do all the recruiting
2. in 2020, Recruiters will move up the chain thanks to People Aggregators and become Talent Consultants
3. In 2020, Recruiters will become admin staff, only useful for dealing with the logistics and timing of setting up candidates meetings

The recruiters and sourcers in attendance were certainly not shy about coming forward with their opinion on the topic and offered a variety of different alternatives, suggestions and predictions as to what the future holds for recruiting in the coming years:

Some said the three trends postulated by Bill Boorman are all products of the Silicon Valley bubble and aren’t relevant to the wider recruiting world.

TruLondon Track Led by Johnny CampbellOthers said it makes sense for Hiring Managers to recruit their own candidates as they are best placed to answer candidates questions regarding culture and job description as they are heavily involved in the area. Recruiters at #Tru felt it would then become recruiters’ job to guide Hiring Managers in their selection seen as Hiring Managers have busy day jobs to maintain at the same time. Others scoffed at the idea of Hiring Managers taking over the recruiting role, making the point that most Hiring Managers even fail to help share a job ad related tweet never mind take over the whole process. Someone else also made the comment that while recruiters tend to stay objective when selecting candidates, Hiring Managers may be prone to recruiting their own likeness and that this would be a detrimental factor.

People Aggregators Funnel ofAlgorithms and their resulting products (read: People Aggregators) will play a huge part in the recruitment of the future. Everyone agreed with that. However, it was also agreed that while many of today’s algorithms are based on very similar principal components, in the future there will be many algorithms to choose from depending on the strategic recruiting you are trying to achieve. The human and therefore the unique recruiting element of the process will enter the fold when it comes to choosing which algorithms and combinations of algorithms to use for each job and when it comes to measuring the fit of a person with an organisation.

The Job InterviewWhich brings us to the next point that was raised. Fit with the organisation seemed to be a major concern. A system cannot determine whether a candidate is right for the organisational culture or not and this is where recruiters will be vital in the future. People Aggregators will do a great job of selecting the best technically blessed candidates but a real person i.e. a recruiter, will then need to interview and select a candidate from that list. It will not become an automated process. Any contact/application process prior to the interview will revolve around organisational fit as technical ability will have already been accessed by People Aggregators. The suggestion of discarding the physical interview in years to come was immediately shot down by the whole room. Johnny Campbell made the point that no job seeker will want to work and give their all for someone they’ve never met, and similarly a company should never hire someone they have never met.

But what’s your opinion? Where do you see recruitment and the role of recruiters in 7 years time? How do you think the recruiter’s role will change by 2020? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

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