Post-Pandemic Hiring: Key Changes in the Recruitment Process Due to COVID-19

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Most, if not all industries, were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic in some way. These effects are still evident now, even more than a year after the pandemic first struck the globe. For instance, in the supply chain industry, shipments are mostly delayed.

Another industry severely affected by the pandemic is the recruitment industry. Especially during the beginning of the pandemic, everyone who is not an essential worker is given shelter-at-home orders. So even if people wanted to apply for jobs, they couldn’t. Some recruiters also had to postpone processing some of their recruits due to the sudden changes.

Thankfully technological advances have allowed the recruitment industry to run smoothly again. It’s also worth noting that the unemployment rate in the U.S. has declined. The ability to continue with the recruitment process through virtual channels may have helped make this possible.

The recruitment process has definitely changed because of the pandemic. And many of these changes are bound to stay in the post-pandemic era because of how helpful and convenient they are.

Seeking Talent, Rather than Waiting

Prior to the pandemic, the most common practice in recruitment is to post a job ad and wait for people to apply. But because of the pandemic, recruiters had to become more active in seeking talent instead of waiting for them to come. This practice is more likely to stick after the pandemic due to skills-based hiring.

Skills-based hiring is a growing trend in the industry and means exactly as its name suggests. Companies will hire based on the skills of the applicants, regardless of their educational background and network, or lack thereof. This is a good recruitment strategy as it promotes a skilled workforce and removes prejudice against skilled employees without a diploma.

Diversifying the Talent Pool

Another recruitment change that will likely stay is diversified talent sourcing. When companies recruit, they usually look for people within the industry.

For example, an applicant for a restaurant inventory management position must have years of experience in the field of supply and chain management only. An applicant who worked as a mortgage broker was rejected because they’re from a different industry.

But this kind of recruiting strategy has its drawbacks. For example, the experience in processing remortgage or refinancing loans will have helped the applicant develop skills that are transferable to the inventory management position. So junking this applicant’s resume early in the recruitment process can be a loss.

A diverse talent pool can be very beneficial for many companies as it can promote creativity and good work culture.

Sticking to Virtual Interviews

In the past, many applicants dreaded having to go to an in-person interview and waiting for hours only to be interviewed for not more than 10 minutes. But now, because of the pandemic, this problem is eliminated through virtual interviews.

Applicants no longer have to queue for hours to be interviewed. Instead, recruiters will schedule them for an interview. And they can wait for that in the comforts of their own home. They don’t have to dedicate an entire day for a single interview anymore.

Conducting Orientations and Training Online

In addition to virtual interviews, the orientation for new recruits and training, if needed, can be done online.  The logic behind holding these events online during a pandemic is quite clear: it limits the need for close-contact interactions in an indoor setting.

But this strategy will likely stay even after the pandemic because of the convenience it provides to all stakeholders. Both hosts and attendees will save time and resources by conducting orientations and training programs online. There’s also the convenience of recording the sessions so that attendees can easily reference the events later on if needed.

Allow Choice to Work Remotely

Many companies are making their employees come back to the office. Some are willing to as they feel more productive when working in the office. Others would still want to work from home for personal reasons. So companies are giving employees the choice. They can work remotely all week. Or they can come to the office on certain days.

This ability to choose the work setup will stay after the pandemic. It will be greatly appreciated by employees. Allowing them the choice to work from home or in the office shows that companies trust their employees. It will raise morale and will make employees more productive and loyal to their employers.

The pandemic has truly changed the world in many ways. In the recruitment industry, many of these changes are considered improvements and are expected to stay in the post-pandemic era.

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