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Data For Successful Recruitment

MFG Archive

A recent BBC article examines the power of data in the recruitment process. Will algorithms replace résumés?


In a recent BBC article, Matthew Wall examines the notion that data has an ever-increasing role to play in the job hunt.


Those of you who recruit and manage staff will no doubt be aware how many people leave after 18 months, and the difficulty of finding the right individual to join your team. Wall states “the main reason for failure is not because applicants didn’t have the requisite skills, but because their personalities clashed with the company’s culture.” Furthermore, he believes “the bald truth is that most companies are pretty bad at recruitment.”


Now, with more data than ever before, “we’re able to use our own data to track how long candidates stay in a role before seeking new opportunities,” says Geoff Smith, managing director of recruitment consultancy Experis. He expands on this point declaring “we can also map out and predict typical career paths based on other candidates’ career histories, which makes us more efficient and more able to help candidates with their future career ambitions.” Put simply, Geoff believes “the days of keeping your personal and professional profiles separate are over.”


By contrast, Wall develops the debate by citing Jerry Collier, director of global innovation at Alexander Mann Solutions, who believes “recruiting should be about relationships.” Jerry furthers this point, declaring “technology is only there to make that process simpler and more efficient.”

“The days of keeping your personal and professional profiles separate are over.”

Jerry argues that “if you want diversity and a richer, more creative workplace, you need people from different backgrounds and experiences. Leave that to an algorithm and it will probably come up with the same type of person every time.”


Here at Markets For Good, we’re sure the data analysts amongst you will argue the goal of data and technology is to work effectively alongside the human element. While data may never replace the face-to-face interview, it is clear that things are changing.

Many thanks to Matthew Wall for highlighting the role data can play in recruitment on the BBC.

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