When Covid disrupted business-as-usual around the world, many organisations, hitherto comfortable with their conventional recruitment methods, struggled to cope with the unforeseen challenges of hiring for remote work, the “new normal” of the business world. HR divisions quickly realised that the old ways of recruitment simply would not work anymore. In the years that followed, RPO companies with technology-based services have seen soaring demand as once reluctant organisations have embraced change and are keen to adopt their offerings. One prominent reason for this newfound enthusiasm is the realisation that in many ways, digital RPO processes and remote/hybrid working are wonderfully compatible. In comparison, older recruitment methods now seem unwieldy and impractical. Why so?
RPO is more inclusive, flexible, and fast
For starters, RPO provides employers quick, easy access to a vast database of candidates across geographical locations that cannot be matched by individual company databases. This widespread reach also translates into being more inclusive of diversely skilled talent. Traditional methods that rely on a few job boards or career fairs to attract applicants inevitably exclude large numbers of suitable candidates. Manual screening processes are slower while the logistics of physically criss-crossing cities to interview candidates is both expensive and time-consuming. On the other hand, the AI-based tools that professional recruiters bring on board make selection, remote screening, and interview scheduling a cost-efficient, quick, and far less tedious exercise. A win-win for both employers and job seekers.
There is one big plus point for the RPO process to be considered. It is perfectly attuned to a generation of young, tech-savvy workers because it has the capabilities to reach them where they are always present – the digital world. Also, from the candidates’ perspective, there is an expectation that the hiring process itself matches the job opening in terms of flexibility - and RPO scores high on that parameter.
RPO is better adapted for remote work
Hiring candidates for remote work is a different ballgame from hiring for onsite jobs. Besides looking for the relevant technical skills, recruiters must identify crucial soft skills that determine how effectively an applicant will function in a remote setting. For example:
In the absence of regular supervision, a remote-working employee must be reliable, and deliver high quality work on time.
Good communication skills are crucial. Workers who cannot interact clearly from a remote setting can create problems for their teams.
Remote workers should be able to function independently and find their own solutions to problems as far as possible without needing to consult their seniors or colleagues.
In the absence of in-person interactions, the remote worker should be able to get along with team members, and anticipate and resolve potential conflicts quickly.
New hires should have a good cultural fit with the organisation.
Reputable RPO vendors offer multiple options from video interviews to personality assessments and psychometric tests to evaluate these soft skills. As compared to the traditional reliance on resumes, these methods throw up more realistic data on how candidates will perform in real-life situations. The icing on the cake? Thanks to AI, data from assessments can be processed at vastly higher speeds than in conventional recruitment processes.
Onboarding with an RPO can ease remote-working challenges
Remote work is not without its challenges. In 2020, a US study of 2,000 remote workers identified several pain points highlighted by employees. These included poor IT support, ineffective team communications, feeling detached from colleagues, and higher stress levels.
Many of these problems have their origin in older onboarding processes that are not adapted to remote work. Large RPO companies, with rich experience in offshore recruiting for global organisations, provide streamlined, tested, and efficient onboarding processes that are matched to the imperatives of remote work. This can significantly improve candidate experience. As a bonus, your employer brand gets a boost as well!
Collaborate with your RPO provider
If you decide to go the RPO way, have a detailed chat with the RPO provider of your choice to ensure that you are both on the same page. Some critical parameters that should be discussed are:
Candidates’ job roles, day-to-day responsibilities, and availability
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