HONG KONG: Job recruitment is undergoing a revolution as corporate headhunters try to keep up with the stimulus-crazy, tech-savvy generation.
And hopefully cut their own expenses in doing so.
In many places today, applying for a job means more than filling out application forms, sending resumes or sitting stiffly during face-to-face interviews. Ahead-of-the-curve companies are using new technologies to spread a wide net in the search for talent.
One increasingly popular, low-cost approach is the online interview. It has already been embraced by technology companies like IBM as well as financial institutions like HSBC.
Schools on a tight budget seeking to recruit teachers from overseas can now get a closer look at applicants than was possible before.
And cosmetics company L'Oreal uses an online recruitment game to evaluate its prospects.
In the virtual role-playing game, applicants are confronted with typical management situations and are required to deal with them. They are assessed on the basis of their answers.
"With the help of the advanced Web technology, we can recruit faster and remain within close proximity of candidates rather than waiting for them to send us their resumes," said Bocco Chen, senior recruitment and integration manager for L'Oreal.
"All these tools and initiatives create huge social networks that help attract talent from the whole world," Chen said. "The innovative nature of the game can attract the best students in the world. The game can also identify passive individuals who are not interested in working in our company before they play the game."
Skype, an online program connecting people by telephone or through video chat, is another popular tool for personnel recruitment. Companies consider it more accessible and cost effective than video conferencing.
An obvious advantage of the online, face-to-face interview is that the recruiter and applicant are able to interact almost as if they were in the same room.
The cost of interviewing mid-level managers and staff could become prohibitive if candidates had to be flown hundreds if not thousands of kilometers to corporate headquarters for face-to-face interviews.
Helen Loh, a Singapore-based human resources director for Asia Pacific of Polycom, said if she had to travel from Singapore to Hong Kong for an interview, she would have to spend at least $1,000 for one trip.
"Most companies have stopped flying around to interview their candidates because travel is very expensive," Loh added. -China Daily/Asia News Network