Are cloud-based voice services the future of candidate engagement?
Voice-based devices like Amazon Alexa and Google Home are opening up massive new opportunities for recruitment for corporates, agencies and jobs boards, as well as for candidates themselves.
By 2020 it is predicted that the connected home market could be worth almost US$150 billion globally, and the speed with which consumers have adopted smart technology is incredible.
Last year the cloud-based voice services market hit a tipping point with the number of Amazon Alexa devices shipped quadrupling from six million in December 2016, to 24 million in the same month the following year.
Prior to that, consumer engagement with this technology was confined to early adopters and tech experts. The market has now reached critical mass, meaning the opportunity to take early advantage of this new wave of technology is here and now.
Voice services are a technological development most sectors can make use of to further engage their audiences and position themselves ahead of the curve, and the recruitment sector hasn’t been slow in looking at how to exploit this technology explosion.
Consumers as candidates
One of the biggest changes in talent acquisition in recent years is the focus on candidate experience. This is particularly true for consumer brands where candidates are, in all probability, also their customers. It’s now widely accepted that a negative candidate experience can adversely affect and damage the consumer brand.
The exponential growth of voice service technology in the consumer market -through hardware like Amazon’s Alexa and Google Home - tells us in no uncertain terms that voice recognition is quickly becoming a staple part of a consumer’s day-to-day existence.
Whether it’s listening to music or controlling your lights and heating, through to the increasing number of car manufacturers installing voice recognition as standard, consumers are becoming more reliant on voice recognition to make their lives easier.
Organisations suddenly have a completely new platform through which to grow their candidate pool whilst, simultaneously, strengthening their employer brand.
If candidates are consumers, it makes sense that aligning talent acquisition strategies with the way they communicate in their personal lives is the best approach to guaranteeing a positive candidate experience and maximising candidate engagement.
Voice services for recruitment in practice
The question is, where do voice services fit in the recruitment process and how can you begin to implement it?
It will come as no surprise that millennials are the currently the largest purchase group for smart home devices such as Alexa. So, in terms of recruitment, it makes sense to target this age group in the first instance, as that’s where you’re likely to see the most engagement.
Technology from organisations such as Broadbean allows candidates to speak to their Alexa or Google Home devices to request job alerts, access further details about location and salary and enables them to apply via email immediately and directly through their device.
Organisations suddenly have a completely new platform through which to grow their candidate pool whilst, simultaneously, strengthening their employer brand message by positioning themselves as forward thinking and innovative.
This technology will not remain purely consumer focused. It will infiltrate every aspect of our personal and business lives.
If voice recognition isn’t something you’re ready to implement across your whole business, it could be an interesting angle to use as part of a defined graduate campaign. This would be a great way to test success on a smaller scale and iron out the kinks before a larger scale rollout.
Are cloud-based voice services the future for candidate engagement?
Voice recognition and artificial intelligence are quite clearly a key component of future human communication, so it stands to reason they’re going to be an integral part of candidate communication and the recruitment process.
You only need to look at the total reliance of modern society on the internet, email and smartphones to realise that anything with a rate of adoption we’ve seen in the voice service marketplace is going to become increasingly commonplace.
This technology will not remain purely consumer focused. It will infiltrate every aspect of our personal and business lives, and organisations need to be ready to seamlessly integrate it to remain competitive.