While recruiter confidence may appear to be high when it comes to hiring talent, they still struggle to fill open positions. In a new Monster.com survey, recruiters blame the growing skills gap and résumé exaggeration as to why they are having trouble filling the void.
According to Monster’s 2019 State of the Recruiter survey, 95% of recruiters surveyed say they are confident they can find the right candidate for open positions and three-fourths (77%) consider active candidates to be high quality.
Despite their confidence and a deep talent pool, 71% of recruiters say they struggle to fill a position because of candidate skills gaps. In fact, many recruiters (85%) agree that candidates exaggerate skills and competencies on their résumé.
While these candidates look good on paper, recruiters need to adjust expectations to consider candidates with most or some (70%) of the necessary skills to find the right fit. These were among the insights gleaned from the recent online global survey of more than 1,700 recruiters conducted by Monster, a job search website.
While recruiting techniques haven’t changed dramatically since last year’s State of the Recruiter survey, a shift is coming. As Gen Z enters the workforce, recruiters will need to continue adapting their recruitment strategies. To better understand how to be successful in engaging this generation, recruiters need look no further than their Millennial peers, who are more poised to handle recruiting the next generation of candidates.
What Do Jobseekers Want in the Hiring Process?
According to Monster’s 2019 State of the Candidate survey, 94% of 18- to 24-year-old candidates—or Gen Z—agree that a video of a recruiter would help them better understand a job opportunity. The survey also found that 18- to 24-year-old’s believe that video will play a role in the job search process in the future through video calls with recruiters/potential employers during the interview process (43%), job descriptions (32%), and application submissions (31%).
Interestingly, the latest State of the Recruiter survey found that Millennial recruiters are ahead of the curve and more interested in using video in the job search process as compared to their Gen X and Baby Boomer peers—including interviewing candidates live via video (92% for Millennials vs 88% for Gen X and 78% for Baby Boomers), video job descriptions (90% vs 85% and 70%), and receiving video applications from candidates (91% vs 84% and 73%).
Additionally, Millennial recruiters, compared to their Gen X peers, are more likely to say social media advertising is an effective tool for recruitment (79% vs 66%) and more likely to always use social media advertising to find candidates (41% vs 34%).
Although recruiters continue to rely on the in-person interview (46%) to determine if a candidate is the right fit, there appears to be a generational shift away from the in-person interview with Millennials placing the least amount of emphasis on it (38% compared to 52% for Gen X and 68% for Baby Boomers).
“Today’s tight labor market is making it increasingly challenging for organizations to find and hire outside talent that has all of the necessary skills and is the right fit,” says Scott Gutz, Chief Executive Officer, Monster—in a release announcing the findings. “Upskilling is critical to not only retain top talent, but also to attract qualified candidates from competitors. Companies need to evolve how they view the role upskilling plays within their own organization.”
“Further, it’s crucial that recruiters think about the impact the skills gap has across generations,” Gutz adds. “Millennials in particular have been most affected by job and workforce evolution over the last decade, to the point that they can no longer rely on their previous education to prepare themselves for future success.”
Recruiter Insights on the Hiring Process
Honesty and transparency are lacking on both sides. Only one-third of recruiters think candidates are very honest about their skills throughout the job hiring process, with 85% agreeing global candidates exaggerate skills competencies on their résumé.
Millennial recruiters are more trusting of candidates, with 41% saying they think candidates are very honest. However, despite being more trusting, Millennial recruiters are more likely than Gen X recruiters to agree that candidates exaggerate skill competencies on their résumé (88% vs 83%).
Meanwhile, more than a third of recruiters (35%) acknowledge that candidates are not happy during the job process when they aren’t told why they didn’t move on to the next stage. Interestingly, North American recruiters are more likely to think not following up in a timely fashion after an interview is a big contributor to candidate happiness compared to European recruiters (37% vs 31%).
Flexibility is key. According to recruiters, nearly half of recruiters say candidates (45%) are looking for a flexible schedule. While this is a global priority for candidates, recruiters say they are most challenged to answer candidate follow-up questions about work/life balance (38%) and work schedule (28%), with only salary-related questions being almost as challenging (37%).
Recruiters also rank paid time off (35%) and work from home options (32%) high on the list of benefits candidates look for most often. Interestingly, Gen X recruiters are more likely to say they feel challenged meeting Gen Z work/life balance expectations compared to Millennial recruiters (30% vs 25%).
Meanwhile, on a global front, North American recruiters say candidates are more likely to look for healthcare benefits (50% vs 22%) while European recruiters say candidates are more likely to look for career development opportunities (43% vs 37%) and work from home options (36% vs 24%).
Adapting to the next-gen workforce. As Gen Z enters the global workforce, recruiters will need to continue adapting their recruitment strategies and embrace Gen Z-friendly approaches, like texting and social media. Recruiters say e-mail (40%) and social media (33%) have been the most effective channels for communicating with Gen Z.
But, in North America, recruiters are more likely to say text messaging (38% vs 23%) is effective for communicating as compared to recruiters in Europe who say social media is more effective (37% vs 26%). And, compared to Gen X and Baby Boomers, Millennial recruiters (36% for Millennials vs 32% for Gen X vs 20% for Baby Boomers) agree that social media is the most effective channel for communicating with Gen Z candidates.
“For recruiters to be effective, the industry must continue to adapt to the needs of both candidates and employers. The reality is that the skills and generational gaps will continue to widen in the years to come. But by focusing on addressing those challenges today, companies will be able to not only identify top talent but also retain and grow their existing employee base,” adds Gutz.
About the Survey
To measure opinion on recruitment and the ever-changing role that recruiters play in finding quality candidates, Monster commissioned a 15-minute survey among 1,700 current, full-time recruiters globally (U.S., Canada, UK, France, Germany, and the Netherlands) ages 22 to 76 with an independent research firm.
A sample of n=300 was taken for each country, with the exception of the Netherlands n=200. This survey was conducted between August 6, 2019, and September 17, 2019, and has a margin of error of +/- 5% at a 95% confidence level.