11 Best Features of Recruitment HRMS
If the HR function can be summed up as getting the right people in the right place, doing the right things at the right time, then recruitment could be said to be one of the most essential and impactful HR roles. Little wonder that the HRMS market offers a multitude of options, all claiming to make the recruiter’s life simpler and easier.
Most HRMS offer some sort of recruitment-related feature but exactly what that means in terms of functionality varies from system to system. From simple applicant tracking and recordkeeping to the latest gamified, collaborative social hiring experience. The key question is, as always, what does your business need, both today and in the future? To help you work out the answer to that question, here’s an overview of the main automated recruitment features available on the market, including:
- Job design
- Process management
- Applicant tracking
- Candidate management
- Employee management
- Resume management
- Reporting and analytics
- Employee satisfaction and engagement
- Social HRMS
Using existing employee data to inform specific job descriptions. While adopting a “We want another worker like Fred/Freda!” approach is potentially rife with diversity-related issues, you can use the information in your HRMS to identify the key characteristics of your highest-performing employees (their skills, knowledge, and experience) to identify neutral but useful characteristics of what works for your organization.
You can also use that data to identify what you might be lacking. Either way, data on the performance and results of existing employees is useful when it comes to job design.
The umbrella benefit of HRMS recruitment is the fact that it ensures your recruitment process – whatever it is – runs smoothly, and in compliance with your hiring policies. From the creation of an accurate job description to posting vacancies, accepting and vetting applications, shortlisting, assessing, making job offers, all the way up to the point of onboarding your new hire, various HRMS-related technology is available to support you.
At the basic end of the spectrum, this is essentially a checklist of tasks, with automatic prompts for the relevant action at the appropriate time. In more detail, we can pick out specific useful features:
- Job description templates, linked to your in-house standards, competence framework, etc.
- Auto-publication of vacancies to the main job search engines and jobs boards (such as SimplyHired, Monster, Glassdoor, etc.)
- Auto-publication to your own careers page, should you have one as part of your company website. Ideally, this includes automatic updating whenever the job specification, description, or requirements change; this single feature alone can save hours of admin time compared to a more manual approach.
- Tapping into social media for the broadest selection of possible qualified candidates. When such a large segment of the global population is regularly online and logged in to one of the big three social media platforms (Facebook and Twitter have 3.3 billion users as of October 2021, and LinkedIn adds another 800 million to that) it’s practically negligent to ignore social media when recruiting. The best results from adding social media to your recruitment campaign come as part of a broader social media strategy using such platforms to build your employer brand and user communities that then – at recruitment time – become ready-made talent pools.
To expand a little on the above, applicant tracking is likely to be the biggest timesaver in a transition from manual to automated recruitment. Not only does it enable you to easily review the current status of a campaign, an applicant tracking system (ATS) often includes some form of automatic sorting, accepting or rejecting applications according to pre-set criteria, including employment history, qualifications, references, etc.
At each stage of a recruitment campaign, communication with candidates is critical. This includes communicating the basic scheduling of the process elements relevant to them, including appointments, assessments, and interviews, both in-person and remote.
The other ‘half’ of the process involves your own in-house people, ensuring that they are also ready to do what’s necessary. Remember that these days, recruitment is an increasingly sophisticated process involving people beyond an HR representative and hiring manager. Often, other stakeholders are involved in this 360-degree approach, such as colleagues, future teammates, other interested managers, and sometimes even key (internal) customers.
A good HRMS recruitment module or ATS will access identified diaries or calendars and auto-schedule interviews and assessments – essentially remembering all the tiny details so that you don’t have to.
Another facet of recruitment is internal: the fact that the best person for the job may well be (and arguably often is) an existing employee. Automated HRMS recruitment can be used to ensure that job vacancies are communicated internally as well as externally, and potential candidates – as identified by the system – can be contacted directly with details of the vacancy.
Furthermore, broad internal communication of vacancies to all employees broadens the possibility of the referral of candidates by existing employees (often the best reference!) who may know suitable peers or contacts via their own personal networks.
Leaving aside recruitment campaigns to fill specific vacancies for a moment, another aspect of recruitment is managing on-spec contacts from interested, would-be employees. In a manual system, this means dealing with numerous hard copy or emailed resumes from hopeful jobseekers – yet another administrative task. Such hopeful expressions of interest are traditionally filed in some kind of “remember these next time we have a vacancy” file – perhaps to be forgotten until it’s too late.
However, many HRMS recruitment modules offer resume parsing that can be applied on an ongoing basis, assessing the data contained in submitted CVs and resumes, including name, address, contact details, core skills, qualifications, and experience to create a useful (and easily used) database of potential candidate profiles. In other words, another talent pool in which to fish when a suitable vacancy comes up.
Automating, supporting, and carrying out a process is one thing, but what about afterward? How do you know what impact your recruitment technology is having? What about process review, evaluation, and improvement? Are you getting the ROI you expected and hoped for?
Most HRMS come with a set of standard reports for easy access to recruitment data; very helpful if you’re looking to measure recruitment efficiency and impact. Common metrics include:
- Source of hire: identifying where the best recruits come from.
- Time to hire: the average time from identifying a vacancy to filling it.
- The time per process stage: how long a candidate spends in each stage of your recruitment process.
- Turnover: from which departments or teams are you losing staff and what are the key features of employees ‘most likely to leave’?
These can be used to tweak and enhance future recruitment campaigns and can also be combined with other HRMS data for deeper and more strategic insights, often valued by the C-suite.
Such data can also be leveraged within a recruitment campaign. For example, you might analyze the performance data of your existing workforce to identify the common features of your best-performing employees. This information can then be fed into the job requirements and assessment process to recruit more of what’s currently working well for the business.
One of the biggest advantages of any HRMS module is compliance, and recruitment is no exception. Not least because the issue of complying with relevant legislation and regulations, i.e. staying a legal business, can become complex when requirements vary according to state, territory, or country; especially for multinational, multi-site organizations. Failure to comply can result in sanctions, legal action, or some other form of brand-damaging publicity for your company.
An HRMS can monitor your standard recruitment communications – including job specifications, advertisements, invitations to interview, and job offer letters to ensure they are free of possibly discriminatory wording around race, ethnicity, religion, marital or family status, physical or mental disability, gender, age, and possibly sexual orientation, depending on the relevant laws and rules.
The compliance directive may also use the above reporting functionality to produce mandatory reports containing hiring data. Naturally, compliance reporting requirements vary from territory to territory and therefore can represent a significant administrative burden, to be alleviated by your HRMS. To illustrate, in the US, recruitment compliance at the federal level includes:
- The avoidance of discrimination against persons on the basis of race, color, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy, national origin, or individuals with disabilities in job descriptions and advertising.
- New hires must consent to employment background checks.
- Any job offer must be free of discriminatory language (and some HRMS include template letters that have been reviewed by employment law specialists).
- The above grounds for discrimination must also be avoided in the wording and handling of employee references.
While arguably not strictly speaking a recruitment activity, it’s difficult to separate recruitment and onboarding in practice. A new hire’s experience throughout the recruitment process influences their mindset, attitude, and approach to their first day and beyond.
Likewise, elements of onboarding can be incorporated into the recruitment process – for example, communication of key information about the organization to applicants and interviewees can set them up for a more informed and focused assessment and interview process and ensure that the successful candidate has already effectively begun their induction process before their first day on the job (in fact, before they’ve even been offered the job)!
While employee engagement is not within the obvious remit of recruitment, how you hire your employees can have a direct impact on their view of the organization. Put simply, if the process was managed well, kept as simple and straightforward as possible, and presented the company in the best possible light, then your new employee is starting work with a higher baseline satisfaction – a significant influence on how they approach their first 100 days working with you.
As a complement to your recruitment processes, the social media-related features of your HRMS and how your organization portrays itself on social media platforms have a reputational effect. This means they have an impact on the kinds of applicants your recruitment campaigns attract. The way in which you reach out and engage with potential future hires is all part of building your talent pipeline.
The driver may be an expansion or just keeping the current roles filled, but bringing new blood into the organization is not to be undertaken lightly. Whether a new appointment proves to be a perfect asset or a serious mistake, recruitment has an impact. Using appropriate HR technology can smooth the process of assessment and hiring, and help an organization avoid all-too-easy errors or omissions.
For more information on finding the right HRMS to support your hiring processes, check out HRMSworld’s recruitment software selection white paper.
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