I’m looking as a TA leader, and I need to find efficiencies in the process, the first thing I’m going to look at is, is AI and machine learning. What I’m finding in the, in the industry is that it’s feast or famine. You have people out there that will have 16 different products that all do the same thing. Because they just they want to test something new. If you listen closely, a lot of the AI and machine learning vendors all say that they do the same things. Talent Acquisition leaders might not be able to discern one from the other or both used in combination with one another. It can be overwhelming if you are new to this type of technology and have several competing strategic talent priorities. There are some ways to separate the pretenders from the contenders in the recruiting AI and machine learning industry. William Tincup and I recently spoke about the topic on the RecruitingDaily podcast.
Transparency in the Technology
There are vendors who are not the best at the sales process. They have a demo pitch they share with the primary goal of showcasing all of the bells and whistles to lure TA leaders into the product. I get it, you’re a salesperson who’s really excited about your product but there’s a huge benefit in explaining how all of the technology works together. For me, whenever I’m evaluating a vendor, I want to get into the technology. How does it go out and find those people? How does it evaluate? What risk are out there? How do we mitigate those risks? Sometimes vendors avoid pulling back the curtain because they think recruiters are stupid or only out to chase the latest shiny object.
Avoid working with a firm who approaches you as though they’re they’re almost selling a commodity versus what is your business need. A good product partner will want to know, “What do you need?”, “What are the gaps in your current process?”, “What are what are some of the things that keep you up at night?”. Once they have that type of insight, they can tell you how this product may or may not meet those needs.
Engage Internal Partners
When you are dating, there’s always a point where you bring someone that you’re interested in to meet your friends or your family. I have found it helpful to bring in someone from your engineering or your IT to participate in the evaluation process of any new technology. They’re will know the questions to ask, and how to ask it in a programming way that the product partner will understand.
I’m a pretty savvy guy when it comes to technology but something may come up that is within my subject area that I stop and say: “What? Backup. What does that mean?” I’m smart enough to know I don’t know what I don’t know. When my IT partner is on with me and begins asking questions to the vendor, I always learn more about the technology. The conversation may bring something up that I didn’t know to ask, but my IT person knew to. At the end of the call, I can debrief with my IT person and delve deeper: “Hey, do you think this will work with our technology?”, “Will this meet the business or gap I have?”, “Do you think this is going to bode well for for what my strategic objectives are?”
Engaging IT in the process also helps with organizational politics. If they fall in love with the product, and they’re able to kind of geek out with the person and fall in love with the product, it helps me on the procurement process and the evaluation process. I have experienced obstacles in the procurement process that have been overcome by the enthusiasm my IT partner had about the product. Just be sure that at some point in your product evaluation process, you engage an IT partner who can get into what the technology is.
I’m a firm believer that there is rarely a good solution versus a bad solution when it comes to AI and machine learning in the recruiting process. Most of the time, the solution is just a mismatch to the organization. The evaluation process can be overwhelming and confusing but I’ve found that these two tips help me separate the contenders from the pretenders in the market.
Be sure to listen to the full episode because we dive deeper into the types of technology I’m currently exploring as well as some other tips for maximizing your efficiencies in the recruiting process.
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