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Startups add some digital dash to make hiring fun

Uma Kannan, February 29, 2016, DHNS 0:10 IST
While recruiting the right talent is one of the big challenges for employers, finding a suitable job with clarity and transparency in pay package is the biggest challenge for jobseekers. Job portals have been trying to bridge the gap between these two, and of late, startups have entered into this space, and are creating a revolution of sorts with features like selfie videos, puzzle-based evaluation, recruiter and jobseeker apps, among others.

“The recruitment and search market in India is about a billion dollars and slightly more. The hunt for talent is ongoing and with startups ramping up and multinationals coming in on the call of the government, the competition for great talent has become that more intense, and hiring that more difficult,” says Vishnu Kumar, Senior Advisor, Lets Corp India.

Lets Corp’s flagship Career Transformation Solution is LetsCareerUp.com, which is said to be the world’s first Career Ecosystem Portal. On the recruitment side, LetsCareerUp streamlines the hiring process for recruiters with algorithms, tools and tests. Kumar says, “Organisations are actively looking at new-age tools that can facilitate reaching out to and hiring the best talent available out there. The upside for recruiters is saving the labour of manually sifting through resumes and an efficient, technology-driven sourcing and screening of candidates,” adding that social media-focused recruiting is on the rise as branding through social channels builds a lot of transparency and trust to tap those passive candidates that aren’t really looking out.

Hiring from traditional platforms end up making recruiters tele-callers, and they try connecting with candidates who may not actively seek job opportunities, says Abhijit Khasnis, co-founder and COO of Hiree, which was previously known as myNoticePeriod.com. “We retain only jobseekers, and hiring efficiencies are higher because you don’t waste time talking to people who are not even looking for a change,” he adds. Hiree ranks jobseekers based on their fitment, quality and activeness, and this makes hiring process faster.

Knowing that communication skills are of utmost important, especially in customer-facing roles, Hiree recently introduced Selfie Resume. “It is a very useful feature for this domain. We allow jobseekers to record a 60-second video introducing themselves. For recruiters, the video resume makes assessment and decision-making faster and saves significant employer effort in evaluation,” says Khasnis, adding they are seeing increased adoption of selfie videos, online challenge/puzzle-based evaluation, stack overflow ranking and social profiles for candidate evaluation.

One for developers


HackerRank, a programming platform for both technical assessments and programming challenges around the globe, launched HackerRank Jobs, last month. The job search app is exclusively for developers.

Prior to its launch, HackerRank conducted an extensive survey and found that the key challenges faced by applicants were slow response time from recruiters, lack of clarity on the job profile and the company expectations from the employee, among others. HackerRank Jobs was created to help speed up the process of finding, evaluating and hiring engineers, says Harishankaran Karunanidhi, co-founder and CTO of HackerRank. Here, programmers themselves will get an opportunity to apply for a position by writing code. “This makes it easier for the applicant to analyse the opportunity based on his/her interest. And also the mobile app makes it extremely user-friendly with an interactive User Interface,” he adds.

Karunanidhi says that companies today are investing time and resources in sourcing the right fit for their organisation. Likewise, candidates no longer wish to work for organisations that do not appeal to their work ethics or culture. For technical positions, candidates today tend to look for details on the technology they will be working with, the real-world challenges they are trying to solve, and company culture, among other things, he says.

Response time is something a seeker is worried about, and HackerRank Jobs promises the jobseeker to get a response from the company within the timeframe specified by a company on the app. “Also, the application provides details on the remuneration offered by the company, as well as insight like work culture, and technologies that are being worked upon,” he adds.

HackerRank Jobs contains workplace pictures of recruiters, so that developers, who spend at least 10 hours in the workplace, get to know about their organisations.

Assessment tool

Job portal Wisdomjobs.com enables jobseekers to test and rate their skills on their profile through its proprietary skill assessment tool — Pragnya Meter. “A jobseeker with good scores for multiple skills will stand a much better chance to catch a recruiter’s attention. On the flipside, Wisdomjobs enables recruiters to search through a database of skill-assessed profiles through a custom ‘Pragnya Meter Search’ to identify profiles that exactly meet their skill competency requirements,” explains Ajay Kolla, Founder and CEO of Wisdomjobs.com

This tool can test over 6,000 skill sets and helps jobseekers highlight their skills and competencies. Talking about the future of job portals, Kolla says job portals will continue to be the primary platform for job hunting and hiring, but they will have to differentiate themselves and offer intuitive features to aid the users’ search.

Mobile is the new platform

A report by industry body The Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) and consultancy KPMG, projects that the number of mobile internet users in India is expected to rise to 314 million by 2017. Given the huge number, it’s unsurprising that the human resource has begun to leverage on mobile as its new platform. “Apps will have a major role to play, since they ensure a high level of engagement with jobseekers and enable instant actions. However, recruiters will still need to depend on their desktops to do their jobs,” says Kolla.

Apps will eventually replace the web interface for jobseekers. For recruiters, the ‘General Exploration of candidates’ will continue to be web-based. Increasing the need for notifications, instant responses and real-time communication with jobseekers will force recruiters to adopt apps as a must-have addition. Hiree’s industry-first recruiter app already allows all these facilities to the recruiters, informs Khasnis.

Hiree has a mobile app for recruiters that allows them to search, view candidates and connect with them on WhatsApp, SMS, e-mail and schedule interview. “The notification to employers for new candidates that sign up for their roles they are hiring, is very helpful when they are hiring for niche skills or senior profiles,” he says.

“About 42% of jobseekers use their smartphones to look for jobs. Recruiters should leverage mobile groups, networks and devices to stay connected. Furthermore, there are many hiring apps that make the process of job hunting easier for candidates. However, hiring is made easier through mobile phones (and apps), especially from a data driven perspective, because people are constantly using a myriad of apps on their phones. For instance, twitter is used most commonly on phones. This allows the user to update their thoughts and actions in real-time. Additionally, messenger apps such as WeChat and WhatsApp are also a way that recruiters reach out to potential candidates,” says Vijay Sharma, co-founder and CEO of Belong, which helps organisations discover and hire top, relevant talent.

Sharma says the recruiter and the candidate do not even need to meet immediately, as interviews can be done over the phone and/or phone applications. Belong uses data-driven algorithms for the hiring process. “One of the five trends of hiring for this year is ‘Hiring goes mobile’,” he says.

Future of hiring market

Will resumes play a major role in future? Vishnu Kumar of Lets Corp India says, “Resume-based hiring will take a complete backseat in the coming days. A resume is nothing but self-embellished projections. Huge focus would be towards employability assessments and psychometric profiling across function and roles. Specific and objective mapping of new hires will reduce company’s investments on up-skilling them.”

Resumes will continue to be the primary source of information about the job seeker, opines Ajay Kolla. “However, they will not be the only basis for recruiters to shortlist candidates. Assessments/tests are gaining much more acceptance among recruiters as an objective way to shortlist candidates. In future, screening candidates through assessments, especially those delivered online, will become the norm,” he adds.

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