This now humorous line which started a chorus of responses of “No, I am Spartacus” from the 1960 movie “Spartacus” directed by Stanley Kubrick and starring Kirk Douglas, was brought to my mind when noting an increasing amount of online testing in selection processes. Clearly many advantages and benefits are to be delivered but some underlying questions do arise.
Even in recruitment technology is supporting the process, but whether this is entirely positive is occasionally debatable. It is without doubt increasing the efficiency of the recruitment process; personality and numeracy / competency tests immediately eliminate candidates who don’t meet the criteria sought. Video interviews have benefits, eliminating the need to find a time when both interviewer and interviewee travel to a location for a meeting, benefiting candidates, in particular. Using technology to ask questions also allows for consistency across interviews, in theory, creating a fairer framework from which to judge candidates.
However, be wary, the impersonal nature of an application process, such as having to record an answer rather than replying to an actual person. A lack of personal feedback is a common issue, where the application was unsuccessful, having been faced with a few of these electronic assessments, simply adding to the impersonality of the service. A face to face interview is a much easier forum to report back. Furthermore, technical issues are inescapable, no matter how advanced the technology; in one example, a rather time-consuming application had to be completed three times because the results failed to save and be sent to the company.
One can argue that with all this technological advancement, there is bound to be a period of adjustment. If the face to face interview is to become an irrelevant step in an application process, certain problems must be overcome. One of the problems could be labelled the ‘I am Spartacus’ problem. When completing online tests, how do we know it is “Spartacus”. Unique passwords, etc can be shared after all to others to complete assessments therefore security and ID validation is vital for assessment integrity. So, what am I saying?
Recruitment as I know it is not dead! If anything,technology reinforces the need to employ skilled recruitment professionals to support clients and candidates alike.
It is evident that there are advantages and disadvantages to technology’s place in recruitment, and in many cases, the advantages outweigh the disadvantages. However, the problems faced need to be recognised and accommodated.
Here at ABPM, our team of recruitment experts are waiting to assist you in your own career path.
Rej Abraham, Managing Director