Guest Blog by Aki Kakko
Mobile is changing the world of business. In 2012 more internet traffic is already coming from mobile devices than from computers. For growing number of the world population it is the primary or the only device to use internet. If we ignore this huge change in any or in our industry or simply think it is just one of the new platforms then we are totally missing the point. It is not just a new platform – it changes people`s behaviour and it shapes both: how companies do business and how they run their businesses. And these changes are happening incredibly fast!
The switch from online to print in terms of revenues happened during 10 or more years, while now when mobile is changing the traditional way of using the internet and it will affect everything in it and will happen way faster. Customers, loyalty, revenue streams etc. are again shared based on the new innovations that can rethink and redesign processes or the whole industries. So the question whether companies should adapt mobile in their recruitment strategy sounds absolutely irrelevant to me. It should be a no-brainer decision for all the companies and it is always better to be proactive then to be forced to change. And this as well heavily affects the suppliers that operate in the recruitment industry, so if you look from the supplier side of the industry and now reading this be aware that the cow giving your daily milk can pass away soon.
Lately I have seen quite many surveys and polls created to discover how great the impact of the mobile is made on our industry. And based on what I have seen I don’t notice that we are totally realising how the new innovations reshape the industries – the logic behind the change I mean. Latest poll that I remember was titled: “As a candidate do you really want to apply for a job using your mobile phone?” . First of all, when the word `really` is used in the title already I doubt whether the results are going to be the same as if it has been asked in a neutral version. But what I really want to underline is that the question sounds as ridiculous then as the question “what would be the best possible vehicle” asked from the horse owners in the late 1800’s. Well the answer of course would have been `horse that eats less and runs faster`.
The horse is here to stay but the automobile is only a novelty, a fad.”
- President of Michigan Savings Bank, 1901
So to learning’s: Innovations are not typically made inside of the industry by the same companies that are currently operating in it and when you see the resistance it is typically a sign to pay more attention to the matter. For some there is just too much to lose of course. And not too many are bold enough to start cannibalising their current business in the short term to make the change that is needed to stay alive in the long term. And please, if you want to understand how people behave don’t ask, observe and analyse the current behavior and especially behavioural change.
So few words about the behavior: Even recruitment industry as such is so left behind in terms of adapting the mobile in the processes we already see the huge demand from the candidates side. Even though we are keeping the process to be really difficult for the candidates they are still using it more and more. Well at least they are trying.
Just to point out few facts
» 81% of smartphone users search for companies on their mobiles
» 88% of jobseekers already or would search for jobs on mobile
» Google receives +40M recruitment related searches/month from mobile devices in the UK alone
» Career related activities are among the TOP-10 activities that users use their mobile internet for
Main reasons why mobile recruitment is broken…
Actually the whole recruitment process is broken and now it is a good time to fix it (or at least make it to be a bit better) when the first time in history we need this industry to actually focus on building services around the candidates not opposite. Why so? Because candidates want to be served better, they are also willing to pay for it and they want to be empowered with the tools that help them to avoid:
» Impersonal service: For example, complicated and long forms that are most of the time not personalised and most of the questions are irrelevant both for the candidates and for the hiring companies.
» ATS Black hole: And when you have finally submitted your application of up to 10 pages the power in the process is again sent to the companies. What we will see is that there will be a great amount of additional steps in the process and the current way to apply will eventually just fade away. There will be more transparency and the candidate will keep the power that was sent to the company during the whole old-school application process. So goodbye for the days when recruiter was in the control.
» It is worth to point out that in the past recruitment has been an event for most of the people however now for many candidates that are under 40 it is an ongoing process. And most of the current services like job boards are not build to support that. What I mean by that is- you as a candidate are all the time candidate only the activity level is changing.
There might be as well good news for the companies: It is going to be easier to reach and get access to the candidates with these new services and the recruitment process is going to be more and more based on demand and relationship building instead of owning the high amount of candidate information by building talent pools.
So to summarize
1. Mobile is and will redesign the whole recruitment process whether you want it or not.
2. It will do it fast.
3. It will empower the candidates.
Aki Kakko | Founder & CEO, Lab of Apps
Aki is a serial entrepreneur focused on businesses in the field of recruitment, talent attraction and employer branding. You can follow Aki on Twitter @AkiKakko or connect to him on Linkedin. * Click here to watch Aki on mRecSpotlight…»