Talent Acquisition Professionals in APAC Fail to Harness Tech Tools and Align Business Strategy

March 30, 20178:47 am
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Talent acquisition professionals in Asia Pacific are missing out on opportunities, because of the inability to harness technology to business advantage, use tools to make the talent acquisition process more streamlined and efficient, while aligning recruitment and business objectives.

The above findings were highlighted in the Asia Pacific (APAC) results of a new global study commissioned by the Futurestep division of Korn Ferry. Part two of their three-part global report series ‘The Talent Forecast’ unveils that talent acquisition leaders would have greater success in demonstrating the strategic value of their function if they better leveraged key planning and execution tools.

The report series is based on Futurestep’s global survey of over 1,100 talent acquisition and HR leaders around the world and discusses the challenges facing hiring professionals. The study was conducted in the autumn of 2016.

Only 37 percent of APAC respondents report that their recruitment team is aligned to their organisation’s business objectives, and nearly one quarter (24 percent) admit they don’t have a strategic workforce plan, which helps them map future talent needs to business strategy.

“When talent strategy and business strategy are not aligned, talent acquisition becomes reactive, tactical and ineffective,” said Pip Eastman, Managing Director, ASEAN at Korn Ferry Futurestep. “To successfully implement strategies around business growth and sustainability, it’s critical for leaders to step back and analyse the type of talent they need, what they have and how to bridge the gaps. With business strategy more aligned with talent acquisition in both EMEA and LATAM, APAC organisations have a great opportunity to seize in bridging the divide.”

When talent acquisition professionals were asked what, they would focus on if they could spend more time with their recruitment teams, 44 percent of APAC respondents said being a stronger partner with the hiring manager – more than any other region which likely reflects the pace of change in Asia Pacific.

“It’s critical that talent professionals work closely with the company’s business and hiring managers to define and communicate the employer value proposition – why a candidate would choose their organisation over a competitor,” continued Eastman.

“In addition, talent professionals should be able to use data to inform hiring managers on the size of a talent pool, compensation levels, and provide a competitive analysis of other organisations targeting the same candidates.”

Not Keeping Pace with Technology and Modern-Day Candidate Preferences

Many talent acquisition professionals are not fully utilising available technology to engage and assess candidates. For example, only 33 percent respondents in the region report using mobile technology tools for recruitment.

“While the use of mobile technology in recruiting will undoubtedly increase in coming years, talent acquisition professionals should move quickly in this area to best capture candidates’ attention. Young people are searching for positions using their phones and they expect to be able to apply via their Smartphones, particularly in China where mobile use in recruiting is already high,” said Eastman.

See: Companies Need to Better Measure Long-Term Impact of Talent Acquisition: Survey Finds

In addition, only 46 percent say they use video interviewing and only 49 percent use online assessment tools. Although APAC ranks third in its use of video interviewing, it leads the way in its use of mobile assessment tools when compared to other regions. Of those who do use online assessment tools for selection purposes, 24 percent don’t use the data to inform onboarding or development strategies, also the highest globally.

“The right kind of assessment tools help hiring managers understand not only what a candidate can do through competencies and experiences, but who they are through drivers and traits,” said Eastman. “This helps select candidates who are a right cultural fit for an organisation, and can also help with customised onboarding and development plans.”

Using RPO Partners to the Full Potential

Finally, the report sheds light on the use of Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) partners. The top two ways respondents say, they work with RPO partners in APAC is sourcing (91 percent) and screening (76 percent) candidates.

Relatively few organisations use other services that RPO partners offer, such as employer branding, building talent communities, or creating metrics for reporting and decision making. Despite just 16 percent of respondents in the region using employer branding services from RPO partners, this was the highest of all global regions.

Only 46 percent of survey respondents said they use Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) for recruitment purposes. This is a missed opportunity for the collection of key metrics and the analytics that can deliver real value to the business, in addition to creating efficiencies in the recruitment process.

“RPO firms can be particularly valuable in bringing technology and innovation to bear on the recruitment process, but many organisations are using them strictly as tactical recruiting machines,” added Eastman.

“RPO partners can provide quantitative information about the target talent pool, compensation, and social channel behaviours. While at the back end, they can produce data on conversion rates, time-to-hire, qualified candidates per hire, and interviews per hire — all of which are helpful in developing a more effective talent acquisition function.”

Also read: Top Global Talent Acquisition Trends for 2017

Image credit: Freepik