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Candidate no longer to dictate candidate journey

The world is full of sensors – access points, cameras, telephones, measuring devices – that are constantly gathering and collecting data that we can use. The digital world and the physical world are gradually becoming one and the same, and data is what binds them.

But what exactly is Big Data? Technically speaking, Big Data is only considered valuable when it’s ‘near-real-time’, flexible and can be used in combination with other data. Gartner evolved this principle into ‘Volume, Variety and Velocity’. Gartner’s description is most apt.

Big Data is: using a person’s click and buying behaviour to predict what their next purchase will be. It is diverse, multiform, immediately available and used to create value. The word ‘Big’ is confusing. It’s the quality rather than the volume of the data that’s of interest. The trend that Amazon can predict, and the illness an insurance company knows a person is at risk of developing before the person themself knows it. These insights don’t stop at being able to predict precisely what a customer might want, but penetrate further and deeper into the corporate world and the recruitment sector in particular. What recruiter doesn’t dream of efficiently recruiting the right candidates, without fail?

Forget the vague job descriptions, hard to fill vacancies and poor candidate matches. If a company can identify who they are looking for, and companies active in the recruitment sector then use their Big Data, there are three parties who benefit: The company (party 1) has no long-standing open vacancies and the candidate (party 2) can start working sooner. Ultimately, the economy (party 3) benefits, and in turn, society at large.

Take for instance ‘Social Job Matching’, which is said to be a replacement for assessments. Social Job Matching analyses each process before the official application process begins, and uses data from social networks to weigh up individuals against vacancies. It uses psychometrics: the science that makes human traits measurable. Recruiters currently still have to use gut instinct to back up their decision to take a person on or not. With the dawn of these kinds of tools, the decision is supported by hard scientific methods and data. Not only does it allow recruiters to better substantiate their opinions, but the candidates who apply for a certain role are statistically considered more suitable a priori.

The development described above is unravelling as we speak. If it is rolled out further, it will turn recruitment and selection in the entire job market upside down. At the moment, candidates respond to vacancy opportunities themselves. But imagine if the vacancies came to the candidates? Imagine if data analysis got so good, that the right candidate is made aware of the vacancy, even before they themselves realise they’re looking for a new role? The Candidate Journey can be dictated by the company that’s seeking the candidates.

Before this becomes a reality, Big Data needs to evolve some more. But in the digital world, change always comes sooner than anticipated…

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