Routine, repetitive operations are the enemies of productivity and innovation. Every hour your Human Resources and Procurement teams spend on acquiring, deploying, and managing contingent workers is an hour stolen from more valuable activities. Many aspects of business, from marketing to production, have taken advantage of machine learning and artificial intelligence to free skilled workers from mundane and monotonous tasks so they can perform more creative cerebral work.
Eliminating manual processes not only makes operations run faster but also removes the possibility of human error. A contingent workforce consists of a lot of moving parts; automating as many of the tasks as possible could help your company find more and better non-traditional workers, determine which will succeed at your firm, onboard them more quickly, and cut overhead and labor costs dramatically.
Implementing a streamlined, automated contingent workforce management program requires the right software, platforms, integration, and oversight to reduce risk and make your company more resilient and flexible through the efficient use of freelancers and contractors. Metasys Technologies offers this overview of how Robotic Process Automation (RPA) can help.
During past generations, finding qualified candidates to fill full-time jobs often involved passive receipt of applications. Progressive firms now actively collect information on qualified candidates they can use to recruit for current and future openings. Meanwhile, the trend toward agile workforces has led companies to become more aggressive in their prescreening and candidate-accumulation activities. The rise of Upwork, PeoplePerHour, and other sourcing platforms has helped many companies streamline the identification of freelancers and independent contractors. Hiring managers can automatically upload assignment descriptions and pay rates into these platforms and receive lists of potential fits based on keywords contained in candidate profiles, previous client reviews, and objective competency tests.
Companies with more specialized contingent talent needs may require more sophisticated automation processes that could prove too costly or cumbersome to perform in-house. Organizations may find it easier to rely on talent vendors to provide the volume of freelancers and contract workers they require. Hiring companies still can automate their talent-sourcing procedures by applying AI and machine learning to optimize vendor selection. Bots and apps can collect information and evaluate options for initiating, expanding, and terminating relationships with talent vendors. Especially as the business ramifications of COVID-19 remain unknown, companies can mitigate talent risk by tapping into automation to manage supplier relationships or partner with managed service providers to implement automation for them. HR and procurement departments already are overtaxed with managing remote workers, enforcing in-office distancing, etc. With automated vendor management and sourcing in place, they can monitor talent-vendor metrics from convenient dashboards, receive reports of service-level shortfalls, and enforce contract terms without the time and hassle of inspecting operations manually.
An HR professional or hiring manager may reject a resume within six seconds, and most studies show they spend less than a minute passing a resume into the “maybe” pile. This is understandable when we consider that the average online job solicitation receives 250 resume submissions. Still, these two statistics illuminate several problems with the resume-screening process:
- It takes too long – Even if only 20 percent of all resumes survive the six-second vetting, hiring managers would spend an hour and a half just separating the wheat from the chaff. They would still have 50 qualified applicants and would face countless hair-splitting hours to arrive at the 5-10 to interview.
- It is arbitrary and abrupt – Disqualifying resumes after a six-second glance is a recipe for overlooking unconventional, yet potentially ideal candidates. Driven by the need for speed, evaluators focus on applicants’ education, job titles, and previous employers.
- It invites bias –A university study of job openings in STEM professions have shown that hirers put white male applicants with 3.75 grade-point averages on the same level as minority and women candidates earning 4.0 GPAs.
AI scanners overcome these negatives by tracking keywords in candidate’s experience narratives and skills lists. This prevents qualified candidates from being passed over while also weeding out applicants whose abilities do not match the task requirements.
Interviewing and Vetting– Once they survive the early resume stage, candidates’ journeys truly begin. Companies can keep applicants updated throughout the process without spending precious human resources. Communicating through one-way video and chatbots reduces time-consuming interviews while allowing job seekers to expound on their skills and emphasize how their backgrounds dovetail with the company’s values and the job’s demands. Chatbots are instrumental in ensuring top candidates remain engaged and do not lose interest by providing timely updates, confirming receipt of documents, asking routine interview questions and recording the responses, and scheduling follow-up meetings with recruiters.
Onboarding – As the pace of business continues to increase, companies need to prepare new hires to be productive right away. Static initiation and orientation materials are not the optimal ways to ensure new employees and contingent workers hit the ground running, but creating dynamic onboarding materials and customizing the orientation program for each new contributor is too much to ask of an already overtaxed HR department. AI tools can adapt to each new and potential employee’s learning style, whether they are visual, verbal, or interactive. Moreover, AI and augmented reality can create and present scenarios new employees might face, such as simulations involving dealing with angry customers, confronting sexual harassment, delegating authority, and more. Onboarding activities can be modularized, so accountants receive training in areas that bear on their jobs, while customer service representatives receive a different set of onboarding activities.
In addition to these day-to-day transactional hiring processes, automation is poised to help organizations make workforce management more strategic and purposeful. The resources that managed service providers bring to a talent management relationship could pay for themselves through the efficiency, scheduling, logistical, and forecasting insights they deliver. Metasys Technologies, for instance, can design and implement a custom workforce plan for any size company. Our best-in-class data collection and analytics inform decisions surrounding your current talent needs. More importantly, our expertise and proprietary processes drive continuous improvements and efficiencies:
- Scheduling – Machine learning and analysis uses historical data to schedule optimal staffing levels and on-duty skills mix.
- Talent Mix – AI that tracks worker performance by type, task, and hiring platform is instrumental in helping hiring teams determine the best methods for hiring similar positions in the future.
- Compliance – Contract approvals, rogue hiring prevention, and contractor tracking are some of they ways automated reporting and recordkeeping helps companies comply with in-house workflow rules and federal tax and labor regulations.
For a demonstration of how Metasys leverages data, knowhow, and sophisticated analysis to streamline and optimize your workforce management activities, contact us today.