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This Is How Data Analytics Affects Your Job Search

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Dec. 27 2018, Published 2:37 a.m. ET

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You don’t have to work at a tech company to notice data analytics is becoming increasingly integral across industries, especially in your personal life. For example, those shoes you checked out online continue to tempt you, popping up on ads whenever you log-in.  Beyond targeted advertising, companies are turning to analytics more than ever to improve their internal hiring processes. Ranging from simple calculations to more sophisticated formulas, your next job could be leveraging your data to determine whether you’re a good fit for a role before you even apply.

Why are Companies turning to Data for Hiring?

For years the gatekeepers of organizations have relied on their expertise to determine whether an applicant was a strong candidate for a particular role.  While an interview is a key part of the hiring process, relying on that alone can exclude some very capable potential hires.  A more charming interviewee might outshine a slightly more reserved one, but that shouldn’t automatically determine success in the actual role. Turning to a data-driven solution helps eliminate the bias that any person brings to the table when they are sifting through resumes or interviewing potential hires.  Companies are hoping algorithms can be a much more objective and empirical approach to assessing ideal talent.

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Data analytics also allow employers to uncover patterns to help understand whether a candidate has the necessary skillset.  By incorporating assessments, alongside the other available candidate data, employers can better uncover whether a potential employee is equipped and even help predict whether they will stay and be successful in the role.  In a recent study, the National Bureau of Economic Researchers found that employing data analysis for evaluating candidates can lead to higher-quality hires than relying on recruiters alone.

Aside from the quality of the hire, companies are definitely taking expense into consideration.  Getting a hire right the first time is both cost and time efficient.  An unfilled job, along with the process for finding a candidate, can be pricey.  On average, companies shell out around $4,000 per candidate for everything from interviewing to assessments.  If the new hire ends up leaving, it becomes even more expensive, resulting in more time allotted to more rounds of interviewing, on-boarding and training and less time working on the actual business.

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Finally, companies that are employing sophisticated techniques to place prospective employees recognize talent is crucial.  While an employer might have the tightest business model and a solid product, without the people to execute the work the business won’t thrive.  It’s critical to invest in acquiring the right talent to help drive and maintain success.

How Are Companies Using Data?

Companies are literally leveraging robots to help them find the best-suited candidates for open positions.  Some form of artificial intelligence (AI) is used by 38% of companies to improve their hiring search, according to a recent Deloitte Human Capital Trends report.  This can include online bots scouring the web for any publicly available information on social media sites, group sites like meet-up or public threads to uncover potential talent.  The prospect’s information is matched to a job description to predict whether they might be a successful hire.  Methods like these can help expand the candidate pool beyond those that are actively applying.

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AI technology can also help adapt job descriptions for better results by showing in real-time the candidates that would be qualified based on the description.  Sometimes job descriptions can be too prescriptive, potentially scaring away skilled candidates that can perform the role successfully.  Tweaking the text can help employers ensure they are marketing open positions accurately and effectively, potentially allowing for a more diverse candidate pool.

Deloitte believes methods like these will only increase since the companies employing them are finding success—more than the companies that aren’t.  Research indicates companies that are utilizing AI, predictive data, analytics and other types of technology tools in the hiring process are seeing an 18% higher revenue and 30% greater profitability.

Why Does This Matter For My Career?

Whether you are actively searching for a new role or not, any information available online about you can be leveraged to determine your fit for future opportunities.  While that means taking a common-sense approach to social media, as well as keeping an up-to-date LinkedIn profile, it doesn’t mean over-engineering your online presence.  Maintaining an authentic online presence that captures your skillset, along with your personality where appropriate, can be the best method in receiving amazing career opportunities that are catered to you.

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