The ongoing volatility of the UK job market is causing recruitment headaches for just about every business.

The ONS’s latest data has shown that the UK’s average unemployment rate fell in February to around 4.1%, meaning that companies and HR teams looking to find new talent are coming up against the tightest labour market in decades. In addition, the latest Labour Market Outlook from the CIPD shows that one in four organisations expect the number of ‘hard to fill’ vacancies to increase over the next six months.

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These two facts combined make for tough reading if you’re an HR professional. With the job market forecast to remain fiercely competitive, finding the right employees to fill your vacancies quickly could become a real slog – especially if you’re stuck with outdated or ineffective recruitment methods.

Failing recruitment processes can prove costly

Recruitment can be one of the most time-consuming duties an HR team must perform. It also comes with a price tag, as our research discovered that the average cost of recruitment per candidate can be nearly £1,800.

Ineffective processes are probably the biggest single drain on both time and money. They can also lead to organisations missing out on the best recruits – after all, the job market is cutthroat to say the least, and the longer a process takes, the greater the chance of a recruit receiving another, potentially better offer.

The way people search, explore and apply for jobs has also moved on tremendously in the past decade. Yet, many businesses still rely on old-fashioned practices to recruit new staff. These can include:

  • Relying on stacks of paper-based CVs and applications
  • Manually managing the entire selection process
  • Ignoring the benefits of recruiting through social media
  • Not measuring the success of your recruitment channels
  • Failing to respond promptly to all applicants.

Improving your organisation’s recruitment with HR software

Any of those practices sound grimly familiar? If so, you may be hindering and not helping your organisation’s recruitment efforts. Not only can outdated practices damage reduce the effectiveness of your recruitment strategies, but you can be left with relatively poor hires.

In addition, a poor recruitment process can leave a sour taste in the mouth of applicants to your business and damage your brand’s reputation. If a candidate has a poor experience with your organisation when applying for a role (regardless of their success), they may go away and tell other job hunters about it.

Luckily, good quality HR recruitment software can help streamline your end-to-end recruitment efforts and help you attract and engage with the right people at the right time. But how to choose the right solution?

These are the key questions you should ask…

  • Will it complement your own approach to recruitment??

Deciding to invest in good recruitment software shouldn’t mean you have to scrap all your existing practices – just the ones that are creating inefficiencies and holding you back. Good systems should be able to flex to fit your organisation’s individual requirements and enhance them where needed.

Recruitment software for HR teams can help simplify multi-step procedures and improve fragmented, time-consuming admin tasks. With Cezanne HR, you can set up different forms or questionnaires for different types of applications, but manage the selection process in different ways: for example, a graduate could be interviewed by the HR team, or a senior IT candidate by multiple IT specialists within your business etc… You can also then set up bespoke workflows that automatically triggers an action – such as an automated email – as candidates move down the recruitment funnel.

  • Can it help you share job vacancies across multiple channels quicker than your current methods?

You’ll most likely post job opportunities to a variety of job boards. But, if you’re having to do this manually over each and every job board, it can take up a huge amount of valuable time – not to mention be incredibly boring!

Check to see if your choice in software gives you the ability to easily share job postings.  With the Cezanne HR recruitment module, you simply create your job ad and then set it to be automatically posted across free major job boards, like Indeed and Glassdoor, and even across your social media platforms, like LinkedIn, via just a few clicks of a button. Easy!

  • Does it come with website integration?

Having a custom careers page that fits seamlessly with the rest of your company’s website, branding or marketing efforts can be a real asset to any organisation. It should be somewhere you can really show off your business and your opportunities: allowing candidates to browse and apply for your job opportunities and learn more about your organisation all in the same place.

However, this is only possible if your choice in recruitment software includes website integrations. This ensures you can post job openings directly to your own website and saving you time by not having to rely on other people to do it for you (such as IT or marketing departments).

  • Will it help streamline candidate reviews?

One thing that can hold up recruitment at any business is the time to sort through applications to ensure the best fit. If managers are having to sift through mounds of CVs just to identify suitable candidates, your business could be losing vital time in finding the right person for your roles.

Ideally, your recruitment software should make identifying best-fit candidates as efficient as possible. For example, Cezanne HR’s recruitment software can help you to:

  1. Set pre-qualifying questions, such as right to work, years’ experience in particular area etc.
  2. Further filter applications based on specific job-related attributes
  3. Build and refine shortlists
  4. Easily share short lists with your reviewing managers
  5. Trigger messages from the system to set up interviews etc
  6. Gather feedback from reviewing personnel
  7. Make offer/notify failed candidates
  8. Automatically remove vacancies once filled.

Hiring managers using Cezanne HR can review applications, leave their feedback online and easily view interview calendars, it ensures continuous communication with candidates and helps make the candidate selection process a lot quicker.

Having the ability to communicate with applicants directly from your recruitment software can also help with the inevitable candidate rejections. Even if an applicant is not suitable for a role, you must offer the best experience possible to solidify and enhance your brand’s reputation. Contacting them to inform them of your decision and offer feedback is one way to give a positive experience, even if the outcome wasn’t the one the applicant was hoping for.

  • Can it handle both recruitment and onboarding?

Once a candidate has accepted your job offer, your recruitment software should be able to help them make the transition from ‘candidate’ to ‘employee’ easy. This is where having an integrated applicant tracking system (or ATS) is a real benefit for HR.

ATS gives you the ability to turn a recruit’s profile into an employee profile without having to re-enter all their information. As you’ll already have most of a candidate’s key details stored in their recruitment file, ATS can give you the ability to simply convert their profile from ‘candidate’ to ‘employee’ – avoiding the need to re-enter all the details you already have!

This type of functionality is something that comes as standard with Cezanne HR’s recruitment software.

  • Will it help you analyse the success of your recruitment channels?

Lastly, your recruitment software shouldn’t just help streamline your activities. It should also help you to more easily understand the effectiveness of your recruitment channels.

By having all your recruitment data all in one place (as opposed to fragmented on different platforms or stored on separate spreadsheets), you can more readily evaluate the success of your adverts and the channels you’re hosting them on.

When you have access to that type of detailed information all in the same place, you can begin to identify which channels perform best, which might need some refinement, the average time it takes to fill certain roles and the activities which don’t deliver any worthwhile return. All this means you can continuously refine your recruitment efforts to ensure you’re both reaching and attracting the right people to your organisation.

Paul Bauer author image

Paul Bauer

Paul Bauer is the Head of Content at Cezanne HR. Based in the Utopia of Milton Keynes (his words, not ours!) he’s worked within the employee benefits, engagement and HR sectors for over four years. He's also earned multiple industry awards for his work - including a coveted Roses Creative Award.

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