What is surprising from the research is that, despite it being such a key priority, many of those entrusted to find and retain the best talent are using tools that were designed more than a decade ago, for the decision maker and largely at the expense of the end user. Luckily this is changing.
Today we are all attuned to well-designed, intuitive consumer technology. We expect the technology we are provided with at work to be equal to, if not better, than that which we use at home. This has forced businesses to adapt. Take, for example, how more and more businesses are enabling their employees to bring their own devices into work and, in many cases, expanding the variety of handsets they offer employees. Increasingly it seems workers on the daily commute will be staring at iPhones and Android devices as opposed to BlackBerry's.
This fundamental shift in behaviour is revolutionising the business world - and no more so than within the talent function.
At last we are seeing recruitment products with a user experience built for those actually using them - you and me. No longer do you need a degree in IT to get the most out a recruiting software vendor's products. In fact unlike many in the past, we are finally seeing the power of technology to maximise efficiency and productivity in recruitment.
Today's tools are easier to use and infinitely more powerful, fuelled by an explosion in available data. New tools are also performing multiple tasks, helping businesses more easily find and engage the best talent, target passive talent (those not actively looking for a job), locate untapped pools of skill - no matter their sector or location - and create healthy pipelines of talent. There is an expectation that performance analytics are available in real-time because the business of talent management is as fast as any other function in the enterprise. This ensures that those hiring can now focus on engaging the right candidates in more meaningful ways, with a better understanding of their needs and are able to develop deeper relationships.
But technology isn't only changing things for the recruiter. Whether it's monitoring breaking company news, participating in industry conversations, or browsing jobs on the go, candidates are using more and more online channels to find out about businesses and communicate with them. For the organisation this is an opportunity to reach potential and current employees and capture and leverage these interactions to help pinpoint the best fit for vacancies.
Now, more than ever, businesses are realising that talent is their greatest competitive differentiator and are increasingly adopting powerful, user-friendly technology to help them stay ahead in the race for the best talent.
For the companies arming their talent acquisition professionals with these new tools, the advantages are clear. In a fast moving world, they will be better able to support the changing talent needs of the organisation, be swifter to fill roles, provide a better experience for candidates, and make sure the company has broad access to top talent in any market where it chooses to compete. Those companies that are slow to adapt may struggle to catch up.
David Cohen (pictured) is director LinkedIn Talent Solutions, EMEA