The Hiring Value That Technology and Social Media Can NOT Duplicate
by Stacy Pursell, The VET Recruiter®

The process of finding and hiring candidates has changed quite a bit over the past few decades. After all, the Internet has not always existed.

And it’s not just the Internet, either. Perhaps you’re old enough to remember fax machines. The personal computer also affected the employment marketplace. Then, of course, there was email and the Internet. Sadly (or perhaps not sadly), the fax machine went the way of the dodo bird.

Then the next wave of technology hits the shores. This next wave included cell phones and social media. And then we traded our cell phones in for smartphones, which are basically a combination of a phone and a computer.

Which brings us to where we are today. And where, exactly, are we? On the cusp of something called artificial intelligence, or A.I. We’ve come quite far in the span of just three decades. However, while some things have undoubtedly changed, some things have not.

And this article is about the things that have not.

Artificial intelligence: the latest failure

The word “disruption” is used often in business and the national media these days. It’s a relatively recent catchphrase or buzzword. The long form for the word is the phrase “disruptive innovation,” which Wikipedia describes “an innovation that creates a new market and value network and eventually disrupts an existing market and value network, displacing established market-leading firms, products, and alliances.”

A perfect example of this is Uber’s “disruption” of the taxi industry. There is no doubt that the taxi industry felt the effects of Uber’s expansion in the area of transportation. Another example is Netflix. How many brick-and-mortal video store chains still exist? When was the last time you visited one?

For many years now, employment marketplace prognosticators have vowed that recruiters were “going extinct.” They thought so (and voiced their opinion) almost every time technology affected the marketplace in a major way.

  • They vowed that the Internet would be the end of recruiters. But it wasn’t.
  • They vowed that big job boards like Monster and CareerBuilder would be the end of recruiters. But they weren’t.
  • They vowed that social media sites like LinkedIn would be the end of recruiters. And obviously, they weren’t.

Now it’s artificial intelligence. Just like in these other instances, there are those who are of the opinion that A.I. is going to eventually replace recruiters and search consultants. And also just like in these other instances, A.I. is going to fail.

That’s because there is a hiring value that recruiters possess that the Internet, job boards, social media, or any other technological advance can NOT duplicate. And that is why recruiters and search consultants are beyond “disruption.”

Cold, hard facts are not enough

That hiring value is simple to identify. However, it is not easy to provide. That value is the act of recruiting.

This may sound obvious, but it’s the reason that recruiters have not only survived rampant technological innovation over the last few decades, but also thrived during it. Recruiters specialize in the art of recruiting. They specialize in the practice of persuasion. They specialize in the ability to convince a professional to consider a new job and see the potential and the opportunities that exist both in the job and also in the organization that is seeking to fill it.

The Internet can not do that. Job boards can not do that. Social media can not do that. (No matter how valuable you might believe LinkedIn is.)

All the things that I just mentioned—all of these technological innovations and marvels—deal primarily with data. There’s no doubt that data and information are important. Anybody who’s been alive during the past 30 years can attest to that.

However, there is an important distinction that must be made. Data by itself is just data. Information is great, but by itself, it doesn’t do anything worthwhile for you. The key is what you do with that data, how you analyze it, how you handle it, and how you apply it. You can have all the data in the world, but if you don’t know what to do with it, it might as well be useless.

The bottom line: data, even in this glorious Data Age in which we live, will only take you so far. The cold, hard facts are not enough.

Doing the right things with the right data

As an Animal Health Company or Veterinary Practice, you need certain in formation in order to fill your job openings with the best people qualified for the position. You need to know:

  • Who the top candidates are in the marketplace
  • Whether or not those candidates would be interested in your position
  • What it would take to convince those candidates to be interested in your position
  • What it would take to keep those candidates interested during the hiring process
  • What it would take close your top choice and successfully hire them

This is where the value of an executive search consultant or recruiter is evident. Not only do they possess this information (or they can obtain it in short order), but they can also put their recruiting skills to work. And as mentioned above, persuasion and recruiting skills are among the most important pieces of this puzzle. They’re what make things happen.

As you can see, the value is not on the data, but on what the executive recruiter can do with the data. Their job is to take the data, approach the candidate, consult with the candidate, and convince them to consider your employment opportunity.

If anything, recruiters are more helpful in this day and age of non-stop data. There is often so much information available that you don’t know where to begin or what’s important and what is not. A search consultant knows where to begin, and they know where to look and what is most important. Not only is it about what you can and should do with the data, but it’s also about doing something with the correct data. Because if you have bad information at the start, then you’re guaranteed not to go anywhere.

The recruiting industry is not going to be disrupted. In fact, with the continued retirement of the Baby Boomer Generation, the growing skills gap in this country, and record-low unemployment rates, recruiters are more relevant and valuable today than they’ve ever been.

We help support careers in one of two ways: 1.By helping Animal Health and Veterinary professionals to find the right opportunity when the time is right, and 2.By helping to recruit top talent for the critical needs of Animal Health and Veterinary organizations. If this is something that you would like to explore further, please send an email to stacy@thevetrecruiter.com.

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