The future of recruitment: StepStone’s top 5 predictions

Düsseldorf, 08/09/2021

In August, the number of vacancies at StepStone.de was at a record level. Demand has increased by around 30 percent compared to February 2020. "This job boom is sustainable," says Dr. Tobias Zimmermann, labor market expert at StepStone. “Many can no longer hear the term skills shortage, but now it is getting serious. Up to six million people will retire in the next few years. 'Keep it up' in recruiting will not be enough. Employers - and we too as a job platform - have to completely rethink the way people and jobs come together." On the occasion of "Zukunft Personal Europe", Europe's largest personnel fair, the experts from StepStone present five theses on the future of recruiting.

1. Post & Pray will be history

The way recruiting works is old-fashioned and inefficient - and not up to the challenges ahead. After all, recruiting is still mainly done in two ways today, the principle of which has not changed for decades. Either recruiters are dependent on the right applicants accidentally becoming aware of their job offer. Or they have to actively search for suitable candidates. The problem: None of these ways provide a complete view of the applicant market. None of these ways really exploits the possibilities of digitization. As a result, people miss out on many job opportunities that are relevant to them – and companies miss out on suitable candidates. “Whether companies meet the right employees can no longer depend on chance. That's why we're redesigning our platform so that people and suitable employers can be informed about all their options at any time and automatically in the future - through autonomous matching," says Dr. Timm Lochmann, Head of Data Science at StepStone. “Behind Autonomous Matching is artificial intelligence, which is based on our deep and constantly growing knowledge of the entire job market. This year alone, more than a million people have registered with StepStone.de. You enter your CV and detailed information about your dream job. The more we learn about candidates and companies, the better and faster we can bring both sides together in the future.”

2. People will find the right job without looking for it

Today, job searches are still based on people entering job titles and locations into a search mask. As a result, many people cannot find the right job. Because the question of whether a job really fits is highly complex and depends on many personal factors. In addition, people who are not actively looking are also open to new job opportunities. If there are also significantly more open jobs than potential candidates in the future, the long-established division between active and passive job seekers will seem outdated. Instead, for a functioning job market, people need to know their options in the world of work at all times. "At StepStone, we will use Conversational AI in the future to get in touch with people and learn more about their preferences and skills," says Lochmann. "With the help of artificial intelligence optimized for dialogue situations, we will maintain close connections with job seekers and bring them together with suitable jobs. You will then discover suitable job offers without having to actively search for them yourself. StepStone customers benefit from improved matching and a higher quality and number of suitable applications.”

3. If you don't allow a look behind the scenes, you become invisible

The more opportunities people have in the job market, the choosier they become. You want to look behind the scenes of a company before you apply and get an idea of ​​the corporate culture - e.g. through information about potential colleagues, premises or employee offers. However, many employers still do not provide such information and are losing applicants as a result. After all, every second person has already decided against an application because information was missing in the job offer. StepStone's solution: With "Emotions", employers can add media formats such as emotional videos to their job advertisements and show what makes working for them so special. "A job is much more than just a job description and a requirements profile," says Zimmermann. "That's why we help applicants to develop a feeling for the job and employer through pictures, podcasts and videos. Companies also benefit from this. Because successful recruiting is not about receiving the largest possible number of applications after a month, but about identifying the really suitable candidates in the shortest possible time.”

4. Job advertisements without salary information become irrelevant

For nine out of ten employees, salary is one of the most important factors when deciding on a job. However, only about every fifth employer mentions the salary in their job advertisements - and usually only in the form of vague formulations such as "customary for the market" or "above average". At the same time, applicants are often asked to state their salary expectations in their cover letter. A blatant imbalance – which will no longer exist in the future. Because only companies that are transparent about payment from the outset will be able to attract the right applicants in the future. “We create transparency in terms of salary. Because transparency leads to more qualified decisions and more efficient getting-to-know-you processes. Both sides benefit from this. That's why we at StepStone have been giving salary ranges for all jobs since the beginning of the year," says Zimmermann. "We see that salary information in the job advertisement has a significantly positive effect on the candidates' interest in the application."

5. Successful companies will have foolproof application processes

Around every second employee does not apply if a problem-free mobile application is not possible. A third refrain from applying if they have to use an online application form. In short: companies are already giving away potential through unnecessarily complex processes. This development will come to a head in the coming years - due to the ongoing digitization in all other areas of life and the increasingly relaxed situation for job seekers. With Quick-Apply, StepStone offers a very simple solution for employers: Logged-in candidates can complete their application with just a few clicks, without having to fill out countless application forms. Recruiters can find the application directly in their applicant management system or in their e-mail inbox. "If the ordering process in online shops were as complicated as the application process in some companies, online trading would never have caught on," says Zimmermann. "It's very simple: Only employers who now ensure that candidates can apply to them quickly and easily will soon receive good applications. People have choices and will therefore discard.”