The future technology for landing jobs? AI, swipe right, and don’t forget, robot interviewers

By Kwinten Wouters January 8, 2018
HR tech

Worldwide, startups have been making a lot of progress designing tomorrow’s job market, and a new standard has begun to emerge and edge out the classic job application. Mobile-first job searching sites. Swiping to get a job-match. Personal AI advisors. Video-interviews with algorithms fathoming your personality. HR Tech is growing rapidly worldwide.

And with Microsoft buying the professional social network LinkedIn for a cool 26, 2 billion dollars, its clear HR Tech is becoming a serious matter. One in which smartphones are playing an increasingly important role. In fact, they recently surpassed desktop use.

Strategic consultancy Kelton found a stunning 86 percent of active candidates use their smartphones to begin a job search. However, in most cases, it’s still a nightmare to apply on a shrunken down mobile device.

“Therefore, attracting this new generation of talent will require HR Tech to design their recruiting process under a mobile-first approach,” says Othamar Gama Filho, CEO of Talentify, in an interview by Chief Executive. Talentify is a Brazilian startup that provides a digital platform for staffing and recruitment.

“Conversion rates are 10 times better on web pages that have a mobile-first design. Current data suggest that only 2.8 percent of submitted applications come from a mobile-friendly website ”, continues Gama Filho.

2015 data shows that in the US, the majority of Hispanics and African-Americans had used their phone over the past year to find job information. which means weak mobile functionality could limit diversity. Employers run the risk of isolating an enormous amount ability and potential.

“Since diversity and inclusion are key drivers of innovation and business growth, a mobile-first website should be a priority for employers”, concludes Gama Filho.

Apps like SealJobs, Opportunity and Switch have jumped on this mobile-friendly job train. Candidates swipe through job announcements in true Tinder-style. Once a match is made, it can take just a private chat with the company before the candidate can put on his workin’ shoes.

In spite of all these mobile-friendly thumb applications, most people still prefer the peace and calm of their spacious computer. After working hard on a slightly customized cover letter, they attach it to a short and formal email together with their Curriculum Vitae and hope it might survive the 6 seconds-limit to be read.

But this is about to change. Recently founded Artificial Intelligence-platforms like Stella, already screen candidates and link them to suitable jobs.

Newton “The smartest assistant for your job search” or Wade & Wendy (Wade the career advisor, Wendy the hiring assistant), share their AI with you to search a job and plan your career through relevant chat talks.

Of course, AI can only take this process so far. Recruiters will need to provide some human touch when making the final call or plan a face-to-face meeting to decide whether the candidate lands the job or not. Or not?

Imagine. An intelligent computer on the other side of the webcam shoots questions and listens carefully to your answers. It analyses not only what you are saying, but also how you are saying it.  Your performance is graded. Within 10 minutes the same computer decides whether your profile is suitable for the company. Are you a team player? Are you a loner? A leader?

When we talk, micro-expressions in our faces give away information. The faster-flashing eyes. The slightly raised eyebrow. They appear in a fraction of seconds.They are uncontrollable. In the 70’s, Paul Ekman, an American psychologist pioneered in the study of emotions and their relation to facial expressions.

For her PhD, Isabel Gonzalez combined Ekman’s theories with video analytics to uncover personality traits. The investigation led to the Belgium-based startup Facelytix. It wants to assess people by combining video technology and analytical processing via AI. Mid 2018, the first version of the platform will be released onto the market.

Contrary to the classic job application, you won’t have to wait for months anymore to get a reaction. And the company doesn’t have to crawl through an endless pile of curriculum vitae and do time-consuming talks that end up with a recruiter following his gut.

It all might sound a bit freaky. HR still is considered to be a human branch, not directly associated with technology. However, through technology, promising startups can make the job search and application process more objective with the same, inclusive criteria being applied to everybody.