How digital transformation helps recruitment companies survive pandemics

Many recruitment companies struggled to survive the COVID-19 pandemic. Those that did often had a pre-existing (or quickly scrambled) digital transformation to thank.

In 2020, only 25% of recruitment agencies has a digital transformation strategy in place. Today, over 84% do.

That shows you how important digitisation has suddenly become to the industry.

So when the next End Of Times ™ comes, are you going to be able to keep delivering your recruitment services?

What is digital transformation?

Digital transformation is using digitisation and automation to transform the way your business operates. For recruiters, the idea is to spend less time buried in spreadsheets and ticking paperwork boxes and more time on actual recruitment.

These days, IT strategy and business strategy are pretty much the same thing. You won’t find many organisations that separate their use of tech from their plan for service delivery and growth.

This means that for organisations dedicated to not only surviving but growing, digital transformation is going to be at the top of the to-do list.

Why do recruitment companies need digital transformation?

1) Connect, collaborate, communicate

Let’s get the obvious – but vital – one out of the way. The right digital tools help your business stay connected in world-ending times.

At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, most recruitment companies didn’t have sufficient communication and collaborative working systems in place.

So, when lockdown orders came, they had to quickly put ad hoc systems in place. These systems were often slapdash and only paid lip service to cybersecurity, despite the huge – and well-publicised – concurrent rise in cybercrime.

Those recruiters that already used tools like Google Workspace or Microsoft 365 to centralise and systematise how their team worked across multiple locations were in the best position to ride the COVID wave.

2) Leverage data for insights

Recruitment agencies need to understand the data they have on candidates and opportunities. They then need to be able to leverage that data and make decisions based on it – fast.

Machine learning and AI tools are leading the way here, automating processes to ensure response times are minimised (vital for keeping candidates and clients happy) and alerts triggered when there could be delays in your system.

Data integration – incorporating all the data gathered across all your business functions – is key here. As are ensuring the quality of data that you are holding and making sure it is being held securely.

All of this data can then be used to discover bottlenecks and other issues in your recruitment strategies, allowing you to improve and grow your business and your profit margin.

3) Create the best client experience

In today’s candidate-led market, recruitment agencies are facing a great deal of competition to provide the best experience for candidates throughout the recruitment process.

Speed is often the most vital factor here. So is a clear system of communication that keeps a candidate informed as to the progress of their applications.

Some recruiters put into place digital candidate portals that hit both of these objectives with the same stone. On top of this, digital platforms like this are a place to collate and centralise data held about candidates, enabling assessment of your talent pool as a whole.

A properly executed digital transformation will put into place systems like this, helping you identify customer pain points and enabling more ways to help you solve them.

4) Maximise data security

Recruitment companies hold vital client and candidate data in trust. That simultaneous rise of ad hoc remote working systems and cybercrime put untold numbers of people’s private data at serious risk.

Putting privacy and data security at the forefront of the way you and your team think about data will be part of any good digital transformation process.

In turn, stated goals and publicised privacy objectives are becoming more and more of a draw for candidates and businesses that are increasingly aware of how bad practices elsewhere put their sensitive and valuable data at risk.

Why doesn’t every recruitment agency have a digital strategy?

Over 80% of recruitment agencies might have a digital strategy in place. But currently, only around 55% are actually making the investment in the technologies required. So, what’s the hold-up?

Lack of resources is the obvious one, even though the costs of digital transformation are massively outweighed by the benefits. Yet there are also major problems with stakeholder and executive buy-in.

Your digital transformation has to be driven by changes in company culture. This calls for developing a well-planned strategy and putting it in place. But once you do, the benefits in terms of recruitment efficiency, client and candidate response times, and easy matches are there to be seen.

Not sure where to start with your recruitment company’s digital transformation?

Let’s talk. Dial A Geek already works with Hunter Selection and several other local Bristol recruiters. Our extensive experience helps transform recruiters into modern businesses.

Set up a cost and commitment-free chat with Chief Geek Gildas Jones today. Let’s chat about how your tech could be working for you for a change.