Pump Up the Volume: 5 Tips for Using AI in Hiring Campaigns

September 22, 2021
Author: ThinkWhy Staff

Like the rest of the world, the recruitment sector is slowly adjusting to the effects of the pandemic. Demand is on the rise once more, with businesses advertising new jobs that need to be filled – around 10 million. Labor report statistics and everyday business stories emphasize that workers aren’t applying at the same rate as they were pre-pandemic. Those who decide to apply require higher pay¹ and more benefits.

Recruiters must fill job openings regardless of labor pool issues. It can be difficult enough to fill one or two positions for some jobs. With the holidays coming up and the related need for high volume hiring to meet consumer holiday demand, the recruiting challenge can appear more daunting than ever.

AI-fueled talent intelligence and candidate management tools improve high-volume hiring campaigns.

As a result, both in-house recruitment teams and external recruiters are searching for volume hiring strategies to meet the challenge of filling many positions at once. This article will discuss how recruitment teams can overcome these challenges with the assistance of artificial intelligence (AI) tools.

There's lots to cover, so let's dive straight in.

Preparation is Key

AI can help with volume hiring before the job is posted. Your team is likely hiring for many roles, with different requirements and salaries for each one. As such, it's essential that recruiters do not lose sight of the nuances of each individual role or job title, what it demands from candidates and what competitive pay is likely to motivate the right people to apply once they’ve seen the job posting.

1. Perfect the Job Description

A lack of clarity or non-competitive wage in the job posting could lead to hundreds of unsuitable applications - which is a massive time waster for your team.

Job responsibilities, hard skills and soft skills should be customized to create detailed job profiles. Using an old or borrowed job description will not work well because so many things have changed since the pandemic began. It’s also helpful to review all wording in a job description to remove unconscious bias and exclusion.

It will be worth spending some time to get this just right so that applicants can get a solid understanding of what they’ll be doing and how they might fit so that they can decide ahead of time if the position will work for them.

It also may help to consider how the general set of job seekers you’re targeting might talk about the very same skills and responsibilities outlined in the job description, especially if you are volume hiring for roles that require little experience or don’t require advanced skills in written communication. A mismatch could greatly impact the number of applicants or set misleading expectations. Clear expectations will help reduce turnover so you don't end up having to backfill right away.

An AI tool like LaborIQ® can give you a strategic advantage by providing detailed job descriptions for more than 20,000 job titles in multiple locations across the U.S. These job descriptions are based on advanced data methods, are frequently updated and are customizable.

2. Pinpoint the Salary

Market-rate competitive compensation will be the only way to attract workers if there is any other local competition (or remote, if applicable), especially for a volume hiring situation. Pinpointing the salary answer for a job requires an assessment that includes the combination of education, experience, location, industry, business size and current applicant supply.

This can be time consuming and frustrating for one job title, let alone several in a volume hiring situation. This step is essential and gives recruiters an edge as the right amount will be perceived as fair or better by the targeted candidates, without causing the employer to overpay for the role.

AI can clearly contribute to the salary answer. LaborIQ makes competitive compensation recommendations per job title that take into account all of these factors, based on advanced data methods applied to 18 trillion data points that are updated and validated regularly. So not only can recruiters determine the right salaries quickly, they can count on accuracy.

3. Communicate Clearly with the Hiring Manager

When the hiring manager receives a clearly written document with the detailed job description and recommended compensation, it makes it easy to confirm or edit the details of the job description. It will also set expectations for a realistic budget to fill job openings in a timely manner.

LaborIQ includes downloadable detailed reports per job title that can be white-labeled and easily sent to hiring managers. The report will provide context for the proposed compensation. As an extra benefit for the recruiter, each of these reports can be saved as a dashboard view so if any edits are required, it’s a simple online edit to create an updated report.

With a solid job description and competitive salary ready to go, let’s look at how AI can help with the next steps in volume hiring.

Managing Volume Applications

The holiday season marks the time when volume hiring often faces its highest demands, as a range of roles must be filled in a short amount of time. In 2017 alone, U.S. retailers hired an additional 570,000 employees².

Recruitment teams adjusting to volume hiring may be overwhelmed with some of the challenges they're bound to face. However, following some of these best practices can help talent acquisition teams succeed in this competitive market.

4. Focus On Enhancing the Candidate Experience

Just because applicants will be one among hundreds doesn’t mean they should feel like it. One way to stand out in this increasingly competitive labor market is to provide a great candidate experience. This means keeping candidates informed every step of the way and making the process as smooth as possible.

AI tools can provide substantial help with this process. In one case study, introducing AI-powered chatbots into the recruitment process saved more than 1,200 person-hours while adding a level of responsiveness to candidates.

Automated email responses can quickly inform an applicant that their application process was successful, which is always appreciated. These emails can be even more effective if they let the candidate know what to expect next and the timeframe. Through it all, using positive, inclusive language will help to keep applicants engaged.

Likewise, automating emails and reminders to individual recruiters tasked with next steps helps make sure that candidates don’t get lost in the process, which can be a frustrating experience.

Scheduling tools can make it straightforward for candidates to select a time that works for both them and the recruiter and can simplify phone call and interview reminders.

Whether hiring one or 1,000 workers, the welcome and initial onboarding are two more touchpoints to ensure that every effort is made to use clear, positive and inclusive language and to use descriptions that match the job opening and interview language. This will help a new employee feel like they are not only in the right place but are wanted and treated with respect from the beginning, starting them off on the right foot to be a more motivated and engaged employee.

5. Use the Right Candidate Management Tools

Technology is a game-changer for the volume hiring process. No matter the size of your business, hiring teams can benefit from tools that streamline and accelerate the recruitment funnel and provide valuable data along the way.

AI can help immensely in applications screening for matching applicants to relevant skills and traits, helping sort through hundreds or thousands of resumes almost as fast as they come in, passing only the select few “matches” to recruiters for follow up. In addition to huge time savings, AI screening removes the possible unconscious bias that a person might introduce into the labor-intensive process of reviewing applications. AI can also help at almost every step of the recruiting process.

Here are many of the features an automated, AI-enhanced system could include:

  • an online application tool with a user-friendly interface for mobile and desktop
  • the ability for applicants to sign in, view status and apply for other positions
  • unified multi-channel sourcing
  • ability to easily post jobs to multiple job boards
  • automated applicant screening
  • automated responses to candidates via email, text or even natural language audio by preference at key points
  • automatic notifications of shortlisted candidates to recruiters
  • scheduling and notifications for follow up calls and interviews
  • a recruiter user-friendly interface and reporting for desktop and mobile
  • integrated candidate calls and video interviewing
  • integrated skills assessment and psychological profile
  • tracking and sharing of interview notes and candidate ratings
  • advanced applicant search
  • tracking of candidate status and resolution
  • passive candidate database outreach and updates

There are many exceptional tools in the market that combine the benefits of database management, automation and AI. This article won’t try to promote one over the other because one may fit your company better than another due to features, technology integration or pricing. As you research which automated, AI-assisted tool is right for your company, keep these possible issues in mind:

A disjointed tech stack consisting of several tools and data sources can cause more issues than it solves. On the other hand, a unified AI-enhanced candidate management tool can make volume hiring more manageable, with a single data source and unified reporting. This also reduces administration overhead.

If the applicant vetting rules are not set thoughtfully, good candidates may get rejected out of hand, leaving you with too small of a candidate set. If your applicant volume is high but the resulting AI-proposed shortlisted candidate list is smaller than needed, take the time to review some of the rejected applicants to see if this could be the case. For example, you wouldn’t want to disqualify a holiday retail work prospect for gaps in their employment if you see that they typically only work during the holidays, which is when you need them.

Are You Ready to Improve Your Volume Recruitment Strategy?

As we've seen, volume hiring recruiters are facing new challenges in 2021 and forcing businesses to consider what they can offer in a tight labor market. Let AI-fueled data inform your preparation for your recruitment drive. Your volume hiring effort must cut through the noise of thousands of openings by providing concise, accurate and enticing job descriptions and an industry-competitive salary. Explore how LaborIQ can provide significant value for this purpose. Request a free demo of LaborIQ today.

For help with managing high volume candidates, an integrated candidate management system is a must. AI-based features can add intelligence to these applications to not only save recruiters a tremendous amount of time and effort but also help to reduce unintended bias and improve candidate communications, interview progress tracking and reporting.

While these systems are definitely the way to handle volume hiring, as the recruiting expert you will still own the recruiting process and should apply your experience and expertise to ensure the tools are providing what your business, hiring staff and candidates really need.

Related Reads:

1) cnn.com/2021/06/07/business/retail-jobs-hiring-bonus/index.html
2) statista.com/statistics/243461/increase-in-holiday-employment-in-the-united-states/