Written by Nathan Hewitt

Research shows that automation can make recruitment more human

To find out how to use Recruitment Automation to ‘hire with heart’, we also have a great eBook on recruitment automation with humanity.

New insights from Aptitude Research suggests Ai can play a much greater role in talent acquisition than just improving efficiency for hiring managers,  it can also make the interview process more human for candidates, something Sapia has long advocated

Aptitude Research has published a new paper showing that when you shift the focus in automated Talent Acquisition from an employer-driven view to a candidate-first then it is possible to reduce bias in hiring,  and improve the overall human element of recruitment.

The research, sponsored by Sapia , an Australian technology company that has pioneered transparent Ai-assisted hiring solutions, shows that humanistic automation creates a personal connection at scale, and works to reduce bias, something no other technology or even human-centred solution can deliver.

Madeline Laurano, CEO of Aptitude comments “The misperception that candidates do not want automation and prefer to keep the current talent acquisition is one of the most significant misperceptions in talent acquisition. Candidates want a fair recruitment process and consistency in communication. Automation can support all of these initiatives and enhance the humanity of the experience.”

There are four main ways that talent acquisition is made more human with automation when the candidate is the focus, rather than  simply moving candidates through the process:

  1. Automation can understand what candidates want: Ai considers the unique expectations and experiences of candidates and adapts to them as it learns. Collecting feedback about the recruitment experience and continually improving the candidate journey can help candidates feel connected and heard.
  2. The correct data can interrupt bias early in the process: By creating a consistent and fair experience for candidates early in the process, and not relying on CV data as the determinate of job suitability,  companies are more successful at reducing bias and increasing inclusivity.
  3. Trust can be built through transparent data: Both employers and candidates need to trust the data and methodologies for the technology that they are using, something that can be achieved through transparency. Companies looking at automation should consider providers that will partner with them and provide transparency.
  4. Provide feedback to every candidate:  Though natural language processing every candidate receives personalized feedback and messaging. Leaving unsuccessful candidates feedback they can use for future job searches is empowering and a big leap from ‘ghosting’ or a standard rejection email.

The research can be downloaded here

About Aptitude Research
Aptitude Research Partners is a research-based analyst and advisory firm focused on HCM technology. We conduct quantitative and qualitative research on all aspects of Human Capital Management to better understand the skills, capabilities, technology, and underlying strategies required to deliver business results in today’s complex work environment. 

About Sapia

Sapia has become one of the most trusted mobile-first Ai recruitment platforms, used by companies across Australia, India, South Africa, UK and the US, with a candidate every two minutes engaging with their unique Ai chatbot Smart Interviewer.

What makes their approach unique in its a disruption of three paradigms in recruitment -candidates being ghosted, biased hiring and the false notion that automation diminishes the human experience.

The end result for companies – bias is interrupted at the top of the funnel, your hiring managers make more objective decisions empowered by Smart Interviewer their co-pilot, inclusivity is enhanced, and your hired profile starts to look more like your applicant profile.

Media contacts
Barb Hyman, CEO Sapia

Madeline Laurano , Researcher Aptitude Research


“It’s been groundbreaking”: How Clemenger Group uses AI Smart Interviewing to hire accurately and efficiently

When Tash Sanjay joined Clemenger Group’s Retail Services business as its HR director, she was given a tough remit to hire 400 casual workers in just four weeks.

“So I was new to the company. A quick analysis of our hiring technology showed that the ATS itself was the problem. We were operating very manually, almost not using the ATS to its full functionality, because it wasn’t good. So we decided that we needed to upgrade our ATS, but then we discovered

“We’ve been with for about 12 months now. The solution for us has been game-changing: We actually couldn’t function, given the amount of hires that we do, without it. Speed to hire was critical.”

Going beyond speed to hire

But Tash quickly learned that speed wasn’t enough to properly service its clients. Clemenger Group needed to match candidates accurately to skills and values.

“The initial reason to go with was speed to hire. But now, it’s become much more of a talking point about the holistic benefits of AI, and our clients that we have are wanting to understand more about that. That it is a point of difference for us. It has been groundbreaking for us.”

Tash came across many other assessment and conversational AI platforms but found none that could satisfy both efficiency and deep talent intelligence.

“We saw that there were many traditional personality tests, and that sort of thing. They were interesting to me in the sense that it’s a good way to differentiate candidates quickly, but nothing was tailored to what our business values were. We didn’t have the choice element. So what I like most about implementation with was that it could tailor models and personality traits to specific roles, like a retail-based role. 

“We were able to edit those models to align with our values, and the other products in the market didn’t allow for that. The other providers have old school solutions, like Myers-Briggs type personality tests. There was just no flexibility.

The thought of AI for recruitment creates uncertainty and fear. Tash was quick to point out to her team that Sapia’s technology would not replace them, but empower and improve their decisions.

An AI that empowers TA and hiring managers

“I came into a business that was very conservative and traditional. So to go to AI was the best step for them. A company like ours would traditionally have an outsourced recruitment solution. The benefit of having an in-house one is personalization, and the fact that you are speaking to someone. So we convinced them that AI doesn’t actually remove that, it just gives us a way to get to the right candidate and have that personalized conversation.”

Sapia has taken the Clemenger team by storm. You wouldn’t think recruitment could be fun, but that’s exactly how Tash describes it.

“So when we get an application through, say, an Indeed platform, the way we operate is we actually automatically send them the link. Effectively, everyone gets an interview, and we advertise it that way. This has been a huge competitive advantage.”

“Launch day was really fun. Everyone was sitting there saying, ‘How many have we got? How many have completed it?’ And I was tracking it by the second, refreshing the dashboard to show them. So that was fun.

“Candidates are loving it too. They love the speed and the ease.”

And when Clemenger reaches out to top candidates, they have comprehensive profiles and tailored follow-up questions to drive the discussion forward.

“If you look at our candidate feedback through the dashboard, everyone’s saying, ‘Oh, that was actually super easy. That was a great experience. That was so much quicker. I actually prefer not talking to someone’.

Personalized candidate experience

“And when you’ve had the conversation, I think what I love most is, as I said, the personalization. It was the key to our business. We can jump on a call and say, ‘Congratulations – can we ask you another question?’ And these questions are built by referring to comments that candidates have made in their interview or things that they’ve said.”

Across the board, it’s a love-fest.

“[] is second-to-none. Everyone at Clemenger is bought into the platform. I think it’s funny now when I go to client pitches, and my team mates are saying, ‘We have this tool, and we can effectively hire candidates in minutes.’

“So it’s nice to see that they’ve come on the journey.”

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How Text-Based Interviews are Replacing Personality Assessments

Re-inventing personality assessments through text-based interviews.

Personality is revealed through text-based interviewsPredictiveHire has recently released a scientific research paper that shows that a simple chat interview can measure personality with improved user experience and at a fraction of the time required for a traditional psychometric assessment.

It proves that textual content of answers to standard interview questions related to past behaviour and situational judgement can be used to reliably infer personality traits. It explores how the AI techniques of Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Machine Learning (ML) present a new future for personality assessments.

Why this matters?

The ability to measure an applicant’s personality in the selection process helps recruiters, hiring managers and the applicant make better hiring decisions, including removing the subjective biases involved in human interviewer judgement of candidate personality.

Personality is widely accepted as an indicator of job performance, job satisfaction and tenure intention.

The research outcomes suggest that the work is more enjoyable and thus engaging to the individual and beneficial to the employer and the society at large when there is congruence between one’s personality and career.

However, conducting a traditional personality test adds an extra cost to the recruitment process. It also tends to diminish candidate experience as personality tests are less favoured by candidates compared to other assessment methods such as job interviews.

Interviews have been the preferred method of assessment

Therefore personality tests are not as ubiquitous as employment interviews. Actually, for the past 100 years, interviews are the most widely used selection method in. However, strong criticism of the job interview is the likelihood of bias introduced by the prejudices of the interviewer.

Structured interviews where the same questions are asked from every candidate, in a controlled conversation flow and evaluated using a well-defined rubric have shown to reduce bias and also increase the ability to predict future job performance. The questions asked in a structured interview are derived using a job analysis as opposed to interviewer preference and are typically based on past behaviour and situational judgement.

This research paper is written by Madhura Jayaratne, Data Scientist and Buddhi Jayatilleke, Principle Data Scientist of PredictiveHire.

The ability to infer personality from interview responses could replace lengthy and less favoured personality tests while also providing objective outcomes from text interviews.

Get the Research Paper here 

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Graduate recruitment during COVID-19 – what’s different?

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Recruitment is still fundamentally human activity

The job seeker is a human being who at some point in the process wants to talk to another human being.

B.C (before COVID-19), organisations would create those moments of connection with prospective hires through campus events, case study workshops, group assessment days and invitations to office events.

COVID-19 and forced incubation make some of this impossible and even illegal.

Organisations who have been forced to bench thousands of employees face the same challenge. Staying connected to, caring for and protecting this ‘people asset’ they have built and invested so much in.

The only experience organisations have with protecting an asset on extended leave is when new parents take parental leave and for most organisations that comes down to letting them keep their computer equipment and inviting them to the Xmas party.

Countries in the southern hemisphere are bang in the middle of graduate onboarding, and graduate recruitment and those in the northern hemisphere are about to kick off their programs.

Graduates are a critical part of your talent pipeline. 

They bring new ideas and new skills, and above all, ambition to make a difference. They are also often the most cost-effective cohort as far as output vs salary and related costs.

Some questions to consider right now

  1. If you are mid-way through your graduate recruitment campaign, how do you complete the process remotely, and still maintain a high integrity and fair process for the applicants?
  2. If you haven’t yet started, what has to change as a result of COVID-19?
  3. Your latest graduate intake just started, how do you efficiently steer them through this and stay close to those who need more support?

Have you been following the HR practices of tech companies over the last decade? If you have, you will notice that expectations of employees and candidates have shifted big time. The Netflix culture deck personifies much of it with concepts such as ‘Trust people, not policy’ or ‘Trust + transparency = accountability’.

Trust at work means your team will work all night to meet a deadline. They will be generous sponsors and ambassadors for your organisation and your products, they will refer their friends to work with you. Additionally, they will accept change in your business more readily. Your team will admit and bounce back from mistakes and failures more readily, and overall their discretionary effort will be substantial.

Trust in the workplace is a massive accelerator, and most organisations are trying to find ways to accelerate – to build product faster, ship faster, change business models faster.

Woebegone companies that believe they can keep attracting talent especially young talent with a purpose of ‘improving Shareholder returns’.   Today, we look for aspirational purposes that connect us to something bigger and with which we want to identify. Check out the motto mission statements of the tech giants here and to be the 11th million (or thereabouts)  person to download the Netflix deck click here!

Click here to get 5 Tips To Maximise Trust In Grad Recruiting During COVID-19


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