Hiring chatbots struggled for credibility in the early days: the tech was ahead of it’s time and it had limited conversational features which candidates easily saw through. The climate has now changed and thanks to advanced machine-learning and more receptive candidates, chatbots have become powerful candidate engagement, pre-qualification and even short-listing tools. Chatbots are forcing their way into the hiring process because they are in short, useful and beneficial in many ways.
Creates a responsive hiring process
Chatbots are much more than just an autoresponder; they can automatically answer candidate’s questions on the spot, using their library of answers and natural language processing, satisfying information requirements promptly. This leads to highly responsive hiring experience for the candidate.
Shortens the time to interview
Chatbots can perform many of the pre-qualification functions of a Recruiter. This is because chatbots have the ability to question the candidate about their skills, experience and qualifications and to co-relate these answers against the known job requirements. Chatbots can therefore size up candidates and recommend promising ones to the Recruiter and eliminate unsuitable candidates. This shortens the time between submission, pre-qualification and Recruiter interviews.
Can act as a Recruiter’s personal assistant
Chatbots now have the ability to schedule calls, interviews or meetings between any number of candidates and Recruiters, pretty much automating that entire process. This not only saves the Recruiter time but gives the candidate more flexibility and control over the interview time.
Chatbots have the functionality to transform the Recruiter’s job. Once chatbots are fully embedded in the hiring process, Recruiters will leave basic, 1st round tasks like CV review and pre-qualification and interview scheduling to the bot. This should be good news for Recruiters who now have more time to spend on strategic tasks such as sourcing candidates, (and clients), assessing candidate suitability, interviewing and negotiating, creating a more profitable hiring process. process.
Let’s not go overboard with Chatbots, because although their natural language processing is good, they still won’t pass the Turing test. Candidates aren’t fooled and know they are speaking to a bot! This is not necessarily a problem as long as the bot can satisfy their requests. However, bots can get confused, can end up going round in circles, and provide limited responses. All which could frustrate candidates and damage your employer brand. Of course, a high-end, high powered chatbot would be able to give more complicated and fulfilling responses but may be too expensive for low volume users, right now.
Let’s end on a positive note. While the chat-bot creates a slightly superficial candidate experience, (versus face-2-face), without the bot, the candidate might not have had any response at all. As we know from research, lack of responsiveness is one of the biggest frustrations that candidates have about the hiring process. Therefore, chatbots should on the whole be an improvement on the candidate experience for many applicants. Also, being able to engage in a pre-qualification interview, (that could end in an interview), should be a more satisfying experience than radio silence.
So, while there are a few teething problems, hiring chatbots are the present and indeed the future of recruiting.
What do you think?
About the Author:
Jeff is the Managing Director of KORE1’s Boston office, a full-service Agency offering Temp/Contract, Direct Hire & RPO services nationwide. With nearly 25 years of Inhouse and Agency recruiting experience across a number of different disciplines (Tech, HR, Sales & Marketing, Investment Ops, Risk, Compliance, Accounting & Finance) Jeff and his team have been successful in partnering with clients to build high performing teams. Jeff graduated with a degree in Psychology from Rutgers University and grew up in the Boston area.