Post-Pandemic Talent Acquisition — Hiring on a Virtual Thread 

Here we are almost halfway through 2021 and is it possible the “end” of the pandemic may be in sight? At least in the US and other Covid-19 vaccinated nations, there is daylight ahead and we are reopening. Does that mean we will be going back to traditional methods of talent acquisition and management? Likely not, and the role and responsibilities of an HR hiring manager have evolved, not by choice but by circumstances. How will the hiring process look in the years ahead? We have learned that new virtual tools and processes are required for both recruiters and candidates in the remote and hybrid work environments in the future.

Many HR professionals would likely enjoy going back to working onsite with in-person contact with candidates since they are so people-oriented. However, that is not likely to be the case due to new methods of remote evaluation, verification, hiring and onboarding remote candidates. HR pros have learned that the pandemic forced a digital transformation in the way technology will be used to make hiring decisions going forward. In an article from Forbes early this year (4 Ways Hiring and Recruitment Will Change In 2021 by Mark Perna) a Sage report stated, “24% of businesses have started using AI for their talent acquisition needs, with 56% of managers planning to adopt automated technology in the next twelve months.” And, from a survey by the Society for Human Resource Management, it is estimated that “18% of companies use psychometric testing in the hiring process. This is expected to increase by 10-15% per year.” So, clearly, this is the direction this process is moving.

What new tools and skills will be required for the modern HR manager to stay current and relevant?

Digital hiring tools like pre-hire assessments and virtual interviews will be utilized for improved job matches. This leads to more efficiency and saves repetitious, routine tasks — allowing the HR pro to focus on high touch, subjective contact with candidates. And with virtual interviews, using video technology creates more fairness and consistency when interviewers use the same video and questions. According to TTISI — a leading assessment developer — it is recommended that assessment results comprise up to 40% of the hiring decision, with other evaluation methods to complete the final decision.

How do pre-hire assessments help increase cultures that support diversity and inclusion?

Objective tools like psychometric assessments measure human characteristics based on social science and other research. Common areas for understanding job candidates include behavioral work styles, motivators, skills and competencies, emotional intelligence, and other critical factors. The process is “blind” and shows key areas like strengths, ideal work environments, and best match for team positions based on skill sets and compatibility, not personal preference and appearance.

In the next article, let’s get specific with different types of assessments used for hiring line-staff to executives. We’ll also take a look at how these science-based tools can be used for onboarding and ongoing career development.