Candidates: Are you interviewing and need support?
Artificial intelligence continues to make an impact on recruiting. But even the most innovative TA teams find themselves overwhelmed with options, and unable to find budget to support their AI-driven recruiting initiatives. In this post, we’ll explore how you can build a rock-solid business case for artificial intelligence in recruiting.
Pursuing AI without a specific problem or opportunity in mind is a recipe for wasted budget and unhelpful vendor partnerships.
Ben Eubanks, Principal Analyst at Lighthouse Research & Advisory hit the nail on the head in our recently published AI Buying Guide:
“If a vendor comes to you with ‘AI’ as their leading part of the conversation, it’s time to rethink the relationship. This is about solving real problems with how we hire, and AI should not be the focus of the discussion. Instead, it should first look at the ‘what,’ such as results, impacts and outcomes. Then the conversation can naturally delve into AI and other ‘how’ elements of how the system works on a technical level.”
Most recruiting opportunities that can be solved for with AI fall into one of the following four buckets:
Once you’ve established the problem you’re trying to solve, it’s time to pull the data that shows why it should be solved, and the potential impact from solving it. Many of the more robust AI-driven solutions will solve several of these challenges.
Recruiting metrics are the most important tool to quantify opportunities and successes.
While some metrics - like time to fill - are universally tracked, others may be harder to come by. For many recruiting teams, gathering metrics is the hardest part of the case-building process.
The following are a list of metrics you should consider gathering as you prep your business case. Keep in mind that some will be more difficult than others, so you should focus on those metrics that align with the problem you’re trying to solve:
For example, a lengthy time to fill will support your case that a) your hiring process is ineffective; b) your sourcing is ineffective; or c) you have low recruiting productivity (or any combination of the above.
In Step 4, we’ll show you how you can create some of these metrics from others, and what sorts of metrics are the most powerful when it comes to building your business case.
Once you have your own metrics, it’s time to find your competitors’ metrics.
For example, here are the latest times to fill by industry from DHI Hiring Indicators:
|Industry||Time to Fill (Days)|
|Retail & Wholesale||27|
|Warehouse & Transportation||33|
|Leisure & Hospitality||22|
Other metrics, like turnover, can be harder to pin down. You can usually find these in industry reports, like those from ContactBabel (in the case of call center hiring) and SHRM. SHRM reports also provide insight into highly granular benchmarks, like requisitions filled per recruiter.
Many traditional recruiting metrics - like time to fill - can be translated into ROI metrics that increase the visibility of your recruiting initiatives.
For example, when you reduce time to fill, you also:
Put a different way, this process converts soft dollar metrics to hard dollar metrics. Soft dollar metrics, like candidate experience, appeal to principles and values. Hard dollar metrics appeal to fiscal sensibility. They represent your case in the universal language of business: dollars.
Both soft and hard dollar metrics are important components of a business case. That said, soft dollar metrics tend to only appeal to specific audiences. Presenting an improvement in candidate experience might win over your CHRO, but it is less likely to win over your CFO. Presenting an improvement in quota attainment for revenue-generating roles will win over both.
A complete business case has three components: Industry Comparisons, Potential Improvements in Soft Dollar Metrics, and Potential Improvements in Hard Dollar Metrics.
Industry comparisons generate urgency. They juxtapose your efforts with those of your talent competitors. While comparing your current state to industry benchmarks is not enough on its own to win budget, it opens the door for the buying conversation.
Soft dollar metrics appeal to principles and values. Candidate experience is a great example of this. It is difficult to directly tie improvements in candidate experience to increases in revenue. But if you believe your organization is the type that treats its candidates with respect, erasing the mismatch between your organization’s values and its current recruiting practices is an ROI in its own right. Keeping your audience - and their values - in mind when presenting soft dollar metrics is critical.
Hard dollar metrics appeal to logic and fiscal sensibility. Unlike soft dollar metrics, hard dollar metrics are accessible to everyone in the business. They are the strongest of the three components listed here.
Taken together, you have the makings of a robust business case that shows the value of an AI-driven solution on a number of different levels.