HR trends: Recruiting Candidates

HR trends: Recruiting Candidates

HR trends: Recruiting Candidates

About the series: CV-19 has accelerated many trends, including (or especially!) those related to HR and recruitment. Companies that want to hire valuable candidates – who don’t quit after 3 months – have to make sure they keep up with the newest trends. What’s even more important: they need to implement new strategies in the right way.

Trends that are introduced too fast and/or by the wrong department will backfire by e.g. generating additional costs, negative employer branding, losing valuable candidates, longer recruitment processes, low(er) candidate experience, etc.

To help companies avoid these mistakes, we put together a summary of the most important trends along an employee’s life cycle – with their accompanying threats and – where possible – adding relatively simple quick wins – everything backed up with stats and real cases.

This week, we are sharing trends and threats related to Phase #2 out of 5: Recruiting Candidates.

Trend #1: ATS (Applicant Tracking System)

Let’s face it: an average recruiter is flooded with hundreds of CVs. As a study conducted by InterviewMe says, 62% of respondents (recruiters and employers) use ATS in recruitment processes – as an easy and fast way to “scan” candidates.

Another research, published by eRecruiter tells us that:

  • 90% of recruiters use ATS
  • 84% would feel the difference (in a negative way!) if they didn’t have the possibility to use ATS
  • ATS allows them to shorten the most time-consuming steps of recruitment processes (CVs selection, communicating with candidates)
  • 8 out of 10 recruiters declare that using ATS is beneficial for the whole organization
  • almost 80% of recruiters say that ATS speeds up the recruitment process
  • 70% think that ATS helps them communicate with managers more easily

What are the potential threats?

  1. Incorrect selection of candidates for technical reasons, as most ATS are “more A than I” – they reject good CVs because of e.g. not finding the right key words. In other words: you might miss out on valuable candidates!
  2. ATS remembers recruiters’ choices and learns them – instead of eliminating bias and increasing diversity of employees, the opposite happens.
  3. Candidates don’t trust AI – if they find out that the recruitment process is conducted by a bot, they might step back.
  4. Low(er) candidate experience, if the application process is not “quick and easy” enough.


→ Instead of fully trusting ATS, review rejected candidates manually as part of the process.

→ If you are recruiting for key positions, allow candidates to apply in an alternative way – by emailing their CV.

Real-life case

In 2018 Amazon resigned from its own AI recruitment system. As it turned out, it preferred men over women when selecting candidates, as they were more likely to have more technical experience in their CVs – which AI learnt based on historical data. More on that here.

Trend #2: Tests

Society for Human Resource Management conducted a survey which shows us that 18% of companies use psychometric tests in recruitment processes. As it also found, this percentage is growing at a rate of 10-15% per year.

Additionally, as another surveys show, more than 80% of Fortune 500 companies use online tests when hiring for C-level positions. 89 of Fortune 100 companies use Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) personality test to screen candidate and predict future success.

What are the potential threats?

There’s a risk that companies will choose tests incorrectly – there are many of them that are not reliable and/or don’t fulfill the proper requirements. Additionally, the results might not be interpreted in the correct way.


→ Before you start testing candidates, do a proper research. Analyze available tools, read opinions, ask experts. You should choose a test that is reliable and verifies candidate’s competences. Identify correctly calibrated benchmarks and examine the current team in terms of a common denominator.

At Career Angels, after thorough analysis, we decided to test our candidates with Decision Dynamics and Gallup tools. As a result, our personnel turnover reduced from 30-50% to 0% (!).

Trend #3: Recorded job interviews

As HireVue says, by September 2019 it had conducted 12 million interviews – 20% of them via the AI, which means there was no human interviewer on the other end of a video screen. By now, the number has risen to 19 million. A report from 2019 tells us that AI will replace 16% of recruitment sector jobs before 2029.

What are the potential threats and solutions?

  1. GDPR consent: before you start interviewing candidates via recordings, collaborate with lawyers to make sure all necessary consents are included.
  2. Candidates interviewed via video might be stressed or not up to date with technology, which leads to them being rated lower by interviewers and being less likely to be recommended for hiring, as Business News Daily reports. As a solution – allow a “test round” or to repeat the recording.

Trend #4: Recruiting internal candidates

Recruitment of internal candidates increased by 20% from March 2020 (based on LinkedIn data).

What are the potential threats?

Employees often believe that knowledge and familiarity with the organization’s rules alone will lead to a successful recruitment process. Moreover, it might lead to conflicts between departments and managers.


Communicate openly and transparently about rules and expectations!

Trend #5: Plug&play candidates

More and more employers nowadays are looking for ideal “plug&play” candidates who are a lower risk.

What are the potential threats?

If you select candidates only by “ticking off” boxes based on a candidate’s CV, there’s a high chance you will miss out on a valuable employee.


Focus on competences, not CVs. Change your way of thinking about candidates through the lens of e.g. role or age.

Trend #6: Ghosting

As data says, 40-55% of companies “disappear” from recruitment processes (incl. agencies representing clients), leaving candidates with no feedback or reply, which leads to negative employer branding.

On other hand, 30-60% of candidates ghost their potential new employers at various stages of the recruitment process, which leads to smaller pool of candidates. As an article published by says:

  • 50% of recruiters deal with candidates who ghost them everyday
  • 50% of recruiters stumble upon ghosting every once in a while
  • only 1 out of 25 recruiters has never experienced ghosting before

As another study by LinkedIn in UK shows, 95% of recruiters experienced being ghosted by candidates.


Implement better procedures. Use automated solutions to reject candidates and, if you hired an agency, include a clause in the contract that guarantees no candidate is ghosted. To avoid being ghosted by candidates, reply to them within 24 hours and include a “ghosting clause” in the job ad – highlight that candidates who ghost you will not be able to participate in the recruitment process in the future.

Trend #7: Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DE&I)

As data says, 70% of candidates want to work for a company that cares about diversity and equality in a broad sense. For 80% of candidates, the company’s approach to diversity is one of the most important factors when it comes to choosing a new employer.

What are the potential threats?

47% of recruiters are not held accountable for the KPIs of DE&I strategy.

From the financial point of view[], 16 billion USD is lost each year due to unfair treatment of employees and turnover.


Introduce KPIs along with education of stakeholders. Moreover, align the KPIs with the market realities.

Trend #8: HR analytics

According to LinkedIn Global Trends 2020 report, the number of HR specialists who added “data analysis” as their skill has increased by 242% in the last 5 years! 73% of companies decided that focusing on HR analytics is their priority for the next few years. Still: only 34% of HR departments base their decisions on data.

What are the potential threats?

  1. Data is accessible and analyzed, but the results of analysis are not aligned with the organization’s strategy, it might lead to nothing.
  2. Data is collected only by one department. HR analysis is about integrating data from different departments and/or locations to show the processes in the organization in the most reliable way. What happens often – data from one department is not compatible with data from another one – it’s difficult to analyze them as one.
    1. Data is not collected = can’t be interpreted with time.


Implement data collection and analysis – even simple ones: length of hiring process, number of ghosted candidates, etc.

Coming up next: “HR trends: Onboarding

Here are the other articles from the series:

If you’d like to discuss how we could potentially support your organization, feel free to get in touch by email with