A new year is here and we are all full of hopes. The year 2018 was a good year for the global recruitment process outsourcing industry. And the year ahead is full of promises.

The global recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) market was valued at US$ 5.01 Bn in 2017 and is estimated to expand with a CAGR of 14.4% from 2017 – 2025. While we hope for the promise of the future, the path ahead isn’t one without challenges.

As new megatrends emerge, organizations around the world grapple with the challenges and opportunities that come with these recruiting megatrends.

Recap: Recruiting Trends to Expect in 2019

While the unknown or the new may seem scary, these new trends will not only provide a direction to your recruitment strategies this year, but will also help you figure out how to attract top talent.

Let’s quickly review the biggest recruiting trends we are expecting to see this year!

Recruitment Marketing

We hear a lot of marketing buzzwords associated with recruitment. It’s a surprise for a lot of people that marketing is now associated with recruitment. But it is. Today you hear social hiring and content hiring among the top marketing buzzwords out there. And there’s a good reason for this. It’s simple: Because there was a dire need for it.

Today, companies and recruitment firms employ various marketing strategies to attract talent. As the labor market becomes more and more candidate-driven, marketing is going to be an essential part of the hiring process and is considered to be an excellent approach for choosing the right fit.

Employer Branding

It is a known fact that candidates DO check a company’s reputation before applying or considering a job offer. A good employer brand is necessary, indeed.

Employer branding basically answer one simple question: What are you like as an employer? Your image should focus on answering that question and effectively communicating that image to the public.

Inbound Recruiting

Both social hiring and content hiring are considered inbound recruiting. You basically attract talent instead of actively pushing your brand to them. Attract. Convert. Engage. That’s the inbound way.

Candidate Experience

Experience matters. Today, where candidates have many touchpoints with your brand, a total brand experience becomes significant. If a candidate is unhappy with the application process, they will leave your website. Worst: They will leave unsightly reviews. This is true. This happens. And it’s bad when you have lots of negative reviews. If they are not getting proper communication about the interview process, they will get a negative impression of your company.

Conversely, happy candidates are likely to engage you and will likely accept your offer. And they refer, too!

Social Recruiting

Gone are the days when leaving classified ads on newspapers and job boards suffice. Today, even social media matters. With social media giants rolling out job features, like Facebook Jobs, searching candidates on social channels like Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, forums, personal blogs, etc. is what social recruiting is all about.

Recruitment Automation Tools

Automation and artificial intelligence is here. The competition is using it. Perhaps you should use, too. Automation makes the recruitment job easier and faster. Examples of automation tools are chatbots and resume parsers. Parsers extract candidate data from resumes and save the details in data fields. Chatbots handle queries and basic interview questions. These are good tools to use when streamlining your recruitment process.

Data-driven Recruiting

Knowledge is power they say. Well, data is the fundamental element of knowledge. So, collect data when you can. For using data in recruitment will give you insights on which are the areas in hiring you should focus upon and where you can improve.

Structured Interviews

Structured interviews is the latest form of interview. With a structured interview, the interviewer has already prepared a set of questions to evaluate a candidate’s answers. These are fair and effective as compared to other interviews.

Employee Referrals

Referrals are the best way of sourcing candidates – internal or otherwise. It is the shortest way to hire candidates. And it is really effective. This approach has been here since the dawn of time perhaps. In sales even, referrals are effective. So, even if it’s 2019, creative referral programs still make scene.


Top Challenges in 2019 (According to RPO Experts)

Change is ever present. In the talent acquisition scene, we’ve seen a lot of major challenges over the last few years.

A lot of these changes were brought about by fast changes in technology. Some are due to changing socioeconomic landscapes – rising and falling economies and the consequent rise or fall in needs for jobs and talents.

Undeniably, the contest for top talent is not easier. This year, talent acquisition experts predict that these are the top challenges recruiters will face in 2019, in developed economies.

From Offshoring and Outsourcing to In-House Recruiting

Nothing is wrong with recruiting in-house. That is not a problem at all. The problem lies in doing it without the right nor sufficient knowledge and expertise. Doing so renders the effort ineffective.

Joe Marino, Senior VP at Hueman in an article by the RPO Association, notes that many businesses in the US build these in-house teams ‘under the advice from consulting firms that are not actually providing optimal recruiting strategies’.

“They often provide suggestions to talent acquisition leaders which would not be a best practice for an RPO provider or a best-in-class talent acquisition department,” Marino adds.

Some recruitment experts think that doing this is shortsighted. Paul Meyer, Vice President of RPO at Alluvion, says we can attribute this to a ‘few bad experiences with inexperienced RPOs’. Because of bad experience with other RPO providers, it has become for more experienced, highly-effective RPOs to make their case.

Of course, government’s’ economic policies matter as well. In a 2018 Trends report from Bullhorn, a significant number of employers said they are anxious about US President Trump’s thrust of repatriating jobs to the US. This sentiment shared by other populist leaders in the world.


Job turnover has always been a concern. In the US, where this data is closely watched, job turnover rate neared five million workers per month. That’s a damn lot.

This is a perennial issue that will carry over into 2019, and probably, for many years to come. Meyer of Aluvion also notes that ‘a major reason turnover will stay in the crosshairs for recruiters is because so many other recruiting challenges are tied to turnover’.

As the labor market tightens more, organizations tend to compete for talent that are already working. This is what we call the passive candidates – an elusive, yet highly-qualified pool of talent. Nonetheless, while they aren’t actively seeking new positions, they are open to a strong or enticing opportunity if provided.

Because they are entrenched to a job, passive candidates aren’t easily won over. Organizations must and are, indeed, working hard to get these talent. Posting on job boards along won’t definitely work. Extra creativity is needed.

Recruitment experts agree: There isn’t a job role suffering from scarcity today.

The perennial problem of identifying the right talent

Job-hopping is not a problem in itself. But the number of job-hoppers has greatly increased in recent years. As of 2017, 42 percent of job-hoppers changed jobs between every 1 and 5 years, a rise from 34 percent in 2016. Millennials tend to change jobs even more often, with 46% of employed millennials changing jobs every 1 to 3 years.

With this, identifying and retaining candidates that are truly exceptional and skilled is becoming more and more elusive. Often times, resumes have become ‘too open ended and flexible’ that it is becoming harder to ‘properly identify the skill set and depth of experience of a given candidate’, Meyer said.

Why is this so? Well, a candidate may have tons of experience, here, there, and everywhere… but if it’s job hopping, it might not be what you are looking for. Driving a conclusive insight as to what is the candidate’s core skills and experiences might be difficult.

Again, there’s nothing wrong with “job hoppers,” or employees who frequently change jobs, often every two or three years, but such candidates might not necessarily have the depth of experience you need for a role.

There’s also the question of longevity: Would it be true that ‘once a job hopper, always a job hopper’?

Using analytics and managing data

With a lot of these changes coming in and the varied strategies we employ to attract and retain talent, effective analytics and data management needs to be in your arsenal. Why? The reason is simple: For organizations to be effective recruiters.

Metrics are important. They tell you what to look out for because they measure how you are doing. It’s an indispensable part of the recruiting process and a vital element of process improvement. But that’s not all. With a tighter candidate pool, candidate-driven talent scene, growing importance of branding, and the need for outreach and talent communities, there are a lot of information that you need to collect for you to improve.

In other words, aside from metrics by which you measure how well you do. You need to collect information about the candidates you seek. Strong and accurate data is a necessary backbone when crafting strategies and will also fuel other technological advances like automation and artificial intelligence, for example.

Final Thoughts

Recruitment is challenging as it is. But with megatrends here and there, it’s becoming a lot more challenging over time. From advances in technology, changing talent landscape, and rising and falling economies, these megatrends influence how we recruit and how we do business in general. Challenges are not insurmountable as long as we are well-informed. That is why data is a formidable ally.

Stay tuned as we monitor these challenges and opportunities. Subscribe to our blog!



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