2018’s Most Important Talent Acquisition Trends So Far

— August 6, 2018

It’s hard to deny that human beings love what is new. New car, new shoes, new haircut… New babies always receive all the love and affection; new shirts quickly become the favorite garb and new foods seduce our taste buds and leave us craving more. We’re always on the lookout for the “next best thing” no matter what industry it may be from. When it comes to recruiting, trends shape the hot discussion topics and pave the way for technological innovation.


We’ve compiled the three biggest trends moving and shaking the talent acquisition industry to its core:


#1 — Diversity, Inclusion AND Retention Recruiting


The first and arguably most important trend is the focus on diversity recruiting from an employee retention perspective. Presenting your company as diverse and inclusive isn’t enough — you have to put your money where your mouth is and focus your diversity and inclusion efforts on making employees feel truly welcome at your business. If you don’t pair your diversity and inclusion with a company-wide employee retention plan, are you really trying to keep your workforce diverse?


The idea here is that diversity plays an integral role in employee retention. 78% of workers say a workplace where people are treated equally — regardless of gender, sexual orientation, age, race or religion — is important to them. Effective diversity and inclusion efforts help build a retention mindset with candidates right from the start because they feel their background and identity is welcomed in your business.


Technology trend to solve this issue: Prescriptive Recommendations


Why? Because data is everything in today’s candidate-driven job market. It helps recruiters map candidate traits, skills, offer acceptance rate, retention and other characteristics that predict strong performance, but more importantly it helps you understand the causes of employee turnover to identify what things you need to add, avoid or change to keep your talent.


Predictive talent analytics is already being used to create profiles of existing top performers at companies to find similar traits in candidate pools. These analytics can be taken a step further and recommend to recruiters which of the candidates in their current pool not only fit the requirements of the position but stand the greatest chance of accepting the office and sitcking around. Adding diversity analytics to the mix can help businesses shape their diversity and inclusion efforts to attract even larger candidate pools. In other words, prescriptive talent analytics, from a diversity perspective, fits into retention strategy-building because it gives you insight into the diversity and inclusion efforts your candidates and current employees care about.


#2 — Recruitment Marketing to Passive Candidates


The U.S. and UK unemployment rates are down (3.8% and 4.1%respectively). It’s great the job markets are doing well, but it also means candidate pools aren’t as open for recruiters to attract. Recruiters now have to appeal to fast-growing pools of passive candidates:



  • 84% of candidates would consider changing jobs if a company with an excellent reputation made an offer.
  • 58% of workers look at other jobs at least every month.
  • 71% of workers say they are actively looking or open to a new job.
  • 44% of adults subscribe to job alerts.

Passive candidates can be more difficult to reach since they aren’t always actively looking for a new position. These candidates do tend to keep a sharp eye out for what they may consider a perfect opportunity, though.


Technology trend that helps solve this issue: Text Recruiting


Why? Because quick, consistent communication is how to connect with candidates faster, and the best part is you’ll be communicating with them right in the palm of your hand.



  • 97% of texts are opened.
  • 73% of job seekers prefer to receive targeted job opportunities via text.
  • 89% of job seekers think mobile devices play a critical role in the job hunting process.
  • 53% of candidates trust a company more when it reaches out quickly.

Surprisingly, willingness to receive job opportunities via text is a favorable feature that spans Millennials, Gen Xers and Baby Boomers alike. 68% of Millennials, 73% of Gen Xers and 75% of Baby Boomers said they were willing to receive job opportunities via text.


Text recruiting simplifies the process for passive candidates because it eliminates any communication hassles and cuts right to the chase. They’re not taking time to fill out applications and surf job boards — they want the opportunities brought to them. Text recruiting does exactly that — it brings the opportunity to their mobile device, right in the palm of their hand.


#3 — Revamping the List of Required Recruiting Skills


Job descriptions and postings won’t just be evolving for candidates — they’re changing for recruiters, too! As recruiters continue to improve the candidate experience, data tools will become increasingly important to streamline tasks. With every technological advancement there comes a need for new skills. Recruiters will need quantitative data analysis, big data processing, and AI/machine learning management skills to keep up with competitors and attract the right talent faster. Additionally, with talent shortages at an all-time high due to low unemployment in the U.S. and UK, using these skills for recruitment marketing to attract passive candidates will be the central focus.


Some of these high demand skills include:



  • Communication skills
  • Marketing and sales skills
  • Motivation and persistence
  • Relationship-building skills
  • Multitasking skills
  • Time-management skills
  • IT and social media skills

Something to note about IT skills: Not only do recruiters need to be marketers and communicators, but they will also have to be tech-savvy, too. The day is fast approaching when we will see dynamic individuals rather than dynamic teams made up of single-skilled individuals. For example, one recruiter able to complete the tasks of an entire team using talent, spanning skills across multiple industries and topics in conjunction with advanced technology will be a more cost-effective and efficient option for businesses. While this idea is more of a “trend-in-progress” it’s still a something to keep a sharp eye on.


Recruiting now requires a blend of technology management and people skills to thrive, and it will continue to grow in its diverse requirements as more technology integrates with it. While not all trends are physically about technology, they all trace their change to the innovation in the industry — and technology is the current largest mover and shaker.


A version of this article originally appeared here.

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Author: Jeanette Maister


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