Staff selection techniques

In the last few years, technological breakthroughs have put the reign of traditional recruitment tools used by companies to an end. Classic staff selection methods – resume, recommendations, personal interviews, cognitive skills or aptitude tests, and group dynamics – are nowadays sharing prominence, accompanied by digital environments, with new tools at the disposal of HR departments. This evolution in the strategies to find the best professionals is known as recruitment 4.0.

This new era in human capital search is also due to reasons not strictly linked to digital transformation -although related to it, in some cases- such as the companies’ bet on employee satisfaction, talent retention and the importance of digital reputation. The latter is crucial to persuade future employees to be part of the organization and become not only proficient and productive workers, but also brand ambassadors.

One of the pioneering selection techniques in recruitment 4.0 is, without question, the use of professional networking sites. It is a fairly consolidated system, as reflected in a recent study by the Society for Human Resource Management, according to which 65% of companies find their candidates through them.

The way to interact around this tool has also changed; professionals were the ones applying for vacant positions offered at first, although currently the usual procedure is that companies get in touch –even before posting a job opportunity- with members of the network, regardless if they’re not actively job searching.

Gamification is also set to replace some of the conventional methods in the future, since the use of video or role-playing games has been proved effective to find hidden capabilities and skills.

HR departments sometimes place a bet on online networking, too. For instance, the celebration of virtual coaching events allows participant companies to create a network of prospective candidates for future vacant positions.

Another term experts in staff selection are getting used to is inbound recruiting. It is a system which combines diverse digital marketing techniques in order to find and attract the best professionals.

Other options with a high degree of technological implication, and a view to the future rather than to the present, regarding human capital selection strategies are also worth noticing. One of them is small data which, through the use of algorithms, will allow to locate the most suitable profiles for a certain position, transcending professional networking sites themselves.

Another breakthrough in HR management to keep an eye on is nanotechnology. It has already served experimentally for staff selection procedures within some companies, so as to grab an understanding of, for example, how does the brain react to different situations or stimuli that may occur daily in a professional environment.

At this stage, the main question is when and with what will recruitment 5.0 surprise and amaze us in the future.

Sources: Revista de Psicología del Trabajo y de las Organizaciones, El Economista, Randstad and Forbes.