Hire Power

Technology has forever changed the way in which organizations recruit employees. While perhaps the most obvious example of this is the use of the Internet as a candidate-finding tool, technology can also be used to facilitate the hiring process. Screening Computerized testing is one example of this. Assessments products, like those profiled in previous testing articles, offered by companies such as Brainbench.com, Test.com Inc., SkillCheck Inc., ProveIt, TeckChek and ReviewNet are all aimed at automating and expediting candidate screening. One of these companies, however, takes the testing process a bit further. Offering Web-based testing with built-in interactive interviewing capability, ReviewNet uses the Web in conjunction with the telephone to further qualify IT candidates. The ReviewNet tool, known as Interviewer’s Console, allows for reference of prior online screening sessions during telephone interviews. It also offers the opportunity to conduct question and answer sessions online and on the phone at the same time. According to ReviewNet, the entire process allows for easier and more productive interviews. The simplification adds to both the accuracy and speed of hire. Show And Tell Speed of hire is an issue for clients of T. Williams Consulting, Inc. (TWC), but so is expense related to recruitment. The management consulting firm assists companies in meeting staffing needs. According to Mike Sweeny, managing director for project staffing, the firm’s clients are typically small, emerging high-tech companies. Sweeny points out that recruitment for these companies can sometimes involve candidates residing outside the United States. He says this can add to hiring time, not to mention the cost of airfares related to interviewing. This is where video teleconferencing can come in handy. One TWC client recently took advantage of this technology to fill two positions with two candidates from India. Both candidates were referrals, says Sweeny, pointing out that some comfort level already existed with regard to qualifications. Video teleconferencing makes sense, he says, in those cases where airfare is a factor. According to Sweeny, video teleconferencing costs ran about $650 an interview, as opposed to a $3500 roundtrip airfare from India to the United States. Yet, although in these instances there were financial advantages to video teleconferencing, he points out that the equipment itself is costly. According to Sweeny, most companies currently utilizing video teleconferencing for recruiting are piggybacking on a decision to use the equipment for other purposes. He says it’s unlikely they could justify using it exclusively for recruitment purposes.

Import-Ant Assistance Because of its concerns with speed of hire, TWC has also taken another step. The company recently entered into a partnership arrangement with VisaNow.com process U.S. visa applications online. As the only full-service site for the U.S. visa and immigration process, VisaNow.com allows human resource professionals to prepare and track all paperwork online. “They’ve automated the entire process, sped up the front end,” says Sweeny. At VisaNow.com, immigration attorneys oversee the site and are also available for consultation. The site itself contains up-to-date information about laws and the documentation required for different circumstances. Coming To A Screen Near You CareerShop.Com is also employing technology to help employ candidates. The full-feature Internet career site offers companies a way to take advantage of streaming video at its site. According to Jane Gonsalves, director of content development for CareerShop, employers can opt to create a 30-second or three-minute spot to enhance its presence at the site’s job board. By selecting “Search Jobs” or “Hiring Employees” from the homepage, a candidate can access job listings. When a video is available for a particular company, a television symbol is displayed as part of the job posting information returned in a search list. The symbol also appears alongside a company name in the list “Hiring Employees.” Selecting the “TV” lets a candidate view the video, provided his or her Internet connection and system both support the feature. Using video as a means of introduction gives a company the opportunity to reach a wide audience of potential job seekers. Although it may never replace an on-site visit, the instantaneous nature of an online visit has its advantages. In a competitive job market, time is a critical factor. Time lost often means candidates lost. Organizations that are able to expedite the various phases of recruitment will be more apt to not only find, but also actually place people in positions. <*SPONSORMESSAGE*>

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Paula Santonocito is an e-recruitment strategist and columnist for AIRS, the global leader in Internet recruitment training, tools, news and information. AIRS News:www.airsdirectory.com/news/newsletters/ AIRS Training:www.airsdirectory.com/products/training/ AIRS SearchStation:www.airsdirectory.com/products/tools/searchstation/