High Volume Hiring Still Has a Talent Scarcity Problem in 2021

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Talent acquisition teams at larger organizations have always dealt with the time-consuming demand of high volume hiring. Since March 2020, when the world moved into lockdown, unemployment levels have sky-rocketed to record high numbers. As vaccine distribution accelerates and the economy slowly rebounds, HR’s task returns – to rebuild a workforce at a rapid pace.

With such a large pool of potential candidates, the natural assumption is that talent acquisition teams must have a wealth of options to choose from. Unfortunately, high volume hiring inefficiencies have only become heightened; with more applicants to screen and interview, this has resulted in an increased time to fill.

Finding good leads and struggling with talent scarcity

Even with the high quantity of applications coming in, organizations are still struggling with finding quality talent to fit their roles. According to a 2021 Talent Trends Report by Randstad Sourceright, 40% of human capital leaders say talent scarcity has negatively impacted their organization.

HR leaders are facing talent scarcity across different departments across the organization including:

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  • 40% of leaders continue to experience talent scarcity in IT.
  • 28% say they can’t find enough qualified candidates for HR roles.
  • Nearly one in five need more finance and accounting specialists.

80% of organizations are planning for a future hybrid model of in-office work and a permanent work from home policy. For those planning to stay remote indefinitely, the widening talent pool offers an opportunity and challenge in a global landscape. 

High volume hiring can actually make it more difficult to find top talent and slow the search, according to John Hill, CEO of the Energists. Talent acquisition teams spend less time per applicant, exclude portions of the talent pool, and perpetuate unconscious bias during the selection process.

So how will HR leaders make the most of this surplus of new opportunities efficiently and fairly?

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Improve your hiring accuracy

A good candidate can be a needle in a haystack. Manually screening resumes means talent acquisition teams can spend 80% of their time just sifting through applications. Many applications are never even reviewed, overlooking quality talent simply due to unfortunate timing. 

Prior to 2020, AI tools may have been perceived as ‘nice-to-have technologies,” says Betsy Schafer of IBM. “But in a future characterized by uncertainty, only organizations that embrace the most advanced AI tools will be able to weather future storms.”

AI doesn’t just offer your talent acquisition team operational speed by automating resume screening for your high volume hiring. Innovative AI-based technologies give HR professionals the opportunity to automatically reopen the resume drawer to find past candidates that are good fits. Grade every candidate in your ATS with a report card that automatically shortlists quality talent.

Efficiently supporting your team’s decision-making

How much is your recruiter’s time worth? Automation can help progress applicants through the initial stages of screening, pull data automatically from multiple sources, and create a shortlist of ideal candidates that are waiting for your team at the start of their day. Their time can be better allocated to high-value tasks, including interviewing these best-fit candidates.

Humans make decisions that change as they learn new information. Dynamic grading replicates this decision-making pattern with information from applicant resumes, certifications, and other predictive data elements. Instead of entering all this data into multiple systems, a talent intelligence system can seamlessly integrate into your ATS and work behind the scenes. As such, your HR tech is better at supporting your team’s human decisions.

Artificial intelligence can offer more than just more time back into your talent acquisition team’s day. With machine learning, AI can unlock the power of your data and learn from every past decision made in your ATS at all stages of the hiring process.

This allows a machine learning model to learn from previous hiring success. Find the right talent who will stay with you longer based on your own past decisions.

Attracting and retaining your talent

One of HR leaders’ top concerns for 2021 is attracting top talent when the best candidates may have multiple offers on the table. Today, employees are less restricted by local boundaries in an online world. 75% of organizational leaders believe workers’ expectations of employers are continually increasing. 

What can talent acquisition teams offer to attract and retain the best talent? Some of the key findings from the 2021 Talent Trends Report include:

Promote a culture of equity and inclusion

Now more than ever, employees expect their organizations to take a stand against systemic racism and inequity. Diversity, equity, and inclusion should be an important part of your organization moving forward. 

  • Measure your data across the entire employee lifecycle, from hires to promotions to upskilling opportunities to identify people groups affected by bias.
  • Provide your employees with regular inclusion surveys to understand who is feeling unwelcome and what can be done. 
  • Be an ally in the workplace. Listen to employees, address any racist or insensitive language, and promote practices that make everyone feel welcome.

Combat talent scarcity internally

Play a role in reskilling existing talent. 92% of human capital leaders believe companies should be responsible for reskilling employees. This reinforces to your millennial and Gen Z employees that you are also committed to their long-term career goals.

Flexibility is key

Employees appreciate a level of flexibility, whether that’s a permanent work-from-home policy or a hybrid model with an available office. With this, there is good news for your organization. Nearly 70% of employers believe their workforce was just as productive or more productive working from home. 

Effective talent acquisition in the face of the pandemic has transformed old processes. HR leaders can respond to concerns of talent scarcity in 2021 by leveraging AI technology and making data-driven decisions for every candidate. High volume hiring is a pain point of the past as talent intelligence systems evolve at a breakneck speed toward the future.

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