At the end of 2018, we published an article on what recruitment trends to look out for this year. From recruitment tech, tackling unconscious bias, and to shifting workforce trends – it’s safe to say that as usual, 2019 has been a rollercoaster for recruitment.

As expected, a lot of the trends from 2019 will continue to grow into 2020. The discussions around artificial intelligence and automation continue, but will they really have a significant impact on the every-day recruiter so soon? We’ll dive into that later.

Trends such as data-driven recruitment that we discussed last year are certainly here to stay, as it continues to play a key role in how we continue to streamline the recruitment process. As technology advances and we’re presented with more tools to help us along the way, the use of data will only grow as we measure the success of the changes we’re putting into place.

Then there are the likes of candidate experience or social recruiting, which have also played an important role in what we do as recruiters for a while now. They’ll continue to play a large part in our efforts for 2020, but for the purpose of this article, we’re going to try and discuss some of the latest trends and will therefore leave these out. In 2020, we expect that tools that have been around for some time now will start to play a much larger role in our recruitment process, helping us to improve efficiency and embrace our inner marketeers. So, what is it we should be looking out for?

1. CRM for Recruiting

Right now, ATS systems are more widely used than candidate relationship management systems. While CRMs have been used for a long time, we’re predicting that in 2020 they’re going to become more important than ever to manage engagement with passive and active candidates. As a result of skills gaps and the likes, recruitment continues to get tougher and tougher – therefore it’s important to build consistent relationships with the talent market.

A CRM will allow you to proactively reach and engage new talent, whereas an ATS is much more reactive. Another important aspect to consider is integrating CRM and ATS software so that you have everything available in one place. Make your EVP, recruitment marketing efforts, and your career opportunities all available in one place so that you can actively promote your organisation to the best candidates available.

Last year, we discussed the rise of recruitment marketing and it’s proven to play a really important role in how we recruit – especially when trying to stand out as the employer of choice. Implementing a successful CRM system allows us to take our recruitment marketing efforts to the next level and automate our efforts to make it that bit easier.

2. Programmatic Recruiting

Programmatic recruiting is basically the use of technology for placing and optimizing job ads. It uses data and analytics to make sure that your job ads are seen by the right candidates at the right time through the use of targeted job ads, real-time bidding, and campaign optimization.

A combination of two big recruitment trends, marketing and automation – in its most basic sense, programmatic is automated advertising. Programmatic software uses data such as keywords, location, and industry to place job ads onto a range of relevant sites to ensure that they’re being presented to the most well-suited candidates. Not only that, the software will also measure where job ads receive the best response and then favour those platforms over others. Along with many other intelligence features, programmatic platforms allow you to maximise the results of your job descriptions for better cost, volume, and quality.

We talk about the skills gap quite often, but it really is a candidate driven market out there – with some industries and roles struggling more than others. The benefits of programmatic recruitment mean that you can get more specific with your job ad targeting. There’s no room left for a post-and-pray approach in 2020, and luckily there are plenty of platforms out there to help us move away from this method.

3. Video Recruitment

Video for recruitment comes in a variety of different forms, and it’s a trend that’s shown strong growth year on year. It’s predicted that by 2021, 82% of all global internet traffic with be video (87%, if looking at mobile only traffic!) – so it makes sense to assume that there’s going to be a vast amount of growth for video strategies in 2020.

We know that video has been around for a long time, but there are more and more tools and strategies coming to market that recruitment professionals are using to their advantage. From recruitment videos, using video in our job ads, implementing video interviews, or using video introductions to engage with candidates – there are now more ways than ever to boost your recruitment strategy using video. A lot of video usage in recruitment comes down to marketing – something which crops up a lot in recruitment now. But it can also play a key role in your screening process, allowing you to improve on different metrics such as your time-to-hire, or improve parts of your strategy like candidate experience.

Because the use of video is so varied and comes with a vast array of benefits, it’s clear why so many organisations are turning to different tools to promote their employer brand and streamline their recruitment process.

4. Employer Brand

So, employer branding has been around for some time now – but if recruitment has taught us anything in 2019, it’s that employer branding is becoming more important than ever. LinkedIn research has shown that organisations with a compelling employer brand receive 50% more qualified applicants, as well as seeing 50% reduction in cost-per-hire: proving that an attractive brand can be the difference between finding the right candidates for your roles.

Your employer brand is the perception that the talent market has about your organisation as an employer, as well as your employer value proposition – what your promise is to employees in exchange for their talents and skills. You need to build an employer brand that resonates with the type of talent you want to attract. It’s completely unique to your organisation and communicates what life and culture is like as an employee – you need to communicate why your organisation is a good employer and an even better place to work in order to boost your recruitment efforts and attract the best talent.

A big obstacle in candidate attraction and employee retention is that it can be difficult to judge what it’s like to work for an organisation when applying for a new role. A simple but effective method of tackling these issues are company videos. Authentic and honest ‘day in the life’ videos are a great way to showcase company culture and give people a true insight into your employer brand. People want to work in organisation that align with their values, and focusing on promoting your employer brand will help you to stand out from the crowd and attract the best talent.

5. AI and Automation

We couldn’t discuss 2020 recruitment trends without talking about the world of AI and automation, could we? While it continues to grow and more tools become available, we don’t quite believe it will have as large of an impact as many people are predicting in 2020.

What we do think will have a much bigger impact is automation – and it can be easy to get confused when it comes to their differences. The terms are often used interchangeably, but there are pretty big disparities in their levels of complexity. AI learns from data to try and mimic human intelligences. It seeks and mimics patterns to make decisions that us as recruiters would make. Automation, on the other hand, is driven by manual configuration and we often have to set up the way we want our automated systems to work. In its simplest sense, automation is set up to follow orders, and AI essentially makes its own decisions based on previous data.

Sure, a lot of large global businesses may be in the position to implement AI due to their enormous budgets – but there are more organisations who will be unable to put AI into place. What they will be doing, however, is automating more than ever.

Another issues that AI faces in recruitment is that, according to research, 90% of job seekers reject the notion of AI in the hiring process. Suggesting that the workforce isn’t ready for it quite yet, this can result in organisations losing out on top talent. What we will be focusing on instead is increasing automation in a variety of different ways, including (but not limited to) automated job advertising, candidate nurturing through CRM, interview scheduling, or automating the process through your ATS and other integrated tools.

And finally, a short video from our NED and Chairman, Joe Slavin, on his thoughts about what recruitment trends we can expect to see in 2020: