In the last 30 years, human resources have made some amazing improvements. They have moved from paper to predictive analysis. These advancements have made it possible for recruiters to find talent in a much smarter and faster way, which helps them achieve the business objectives of their organization.

Using the latest in technological innovation, HR professionals can truly add to the profitability of a company and proactively create talent pipelines, which are required for meeting their critical hiring needs. There are many HRIS benefits, but to properly understand them, you first need to see how technology has improved.

Paper is in the past

The earliest generation of recruiters maintained something called a "Rolodex," which contained the names of various potential employees. They relied on print for spreading the word with respect to open positions. They collected resumes when they were at trade shows and even bought attendee lists to find new talent. One of the earliest innovations for this method was the fax. It allowed applicants to send resumes digitally to potential employers. One other technological advancement was the ability of employers to view resumes that have been scanned into the organizations database.

But the major game changer here came when the computer and Internet were added into the mix. The Internet helped democratize recruiting. All job seekers could now apply online for jobs. Social networks like LinkedIn made it even easier to put all these job seekers in the talent line. Online job forums have also made it easy to find talent and further targeting is possible through niche sites. And with job search apps, recruiting has been taken to an entirely new level of mobility.

Predictive technology

The best part of such improvements is in its application for strategic talent acquisition. Big data allows HR teams to use predictive technology for identifying critical talent and sourcing strategically. The marketing metrics of big data provide an insight into the effectiveness of marketing campaigns for recruitment. If the metrics underperform in comparison to the forecasted baseline, the HR team can investigate and address the lack of response right away.

Comparative analytics enable HR teams to better understand how campaigns are faring as compared to other recruitment efforts. Even if the team has been meeting forecasted baselines, it's important to know if the competition has been outperforming their efforts.

Big data can help HR map out talent requirements in line with the future business plan of their company, which leads them to effective job websites that could be engaged for a smarter spend on recruitment campaigns. Those that bring human capital analytics into play will have a seat at the table as far as significant business discussions are concerned.

Big data

In order to make use of the full potential of big data, internal data needs to be examined first. This includes cost per hire, attrition rates, performance scores, sources of hire, etc. This data and metrics should be reviewed in order to find the most cost effective source and the best candidate flow which leads to maximum hires. This is even more important for the hires who are employed with the organization for a year or more and are exceeding performance goals.

The amount of unique IP addresses visiting your website can be tracked and reviewed now. You can capture the websites which they came from, the pages they visited the most, etc. It's important to compare candidates that have been received from the job board advertising with the number of complete applications received to determine drop-off rates.

Some other components include web traffic data, job board metrics, government labor data, social data, etc. This can help you capture the key metrics regarding an organization like how often it is searched for, how often jobs are viewed, clicked on, etc. Organizations which take advantage of such technology can acquire some detailed insights into their hiring and even sourcing strategies.

Technology and talent acquisition

At the core, the greatest benefit of big data technology is related to the answers it provides, and the ability of the insights derived to help business users ask new questions which could not be answered previously. Big data can only achieve its maximum potential when all of the information is interpreted, analyzed, reported, and used by the people in the organization. Here, big data can easily be wasted if HR does not lead, especially as far as talent acquisition goes.

The time for HR to increase their value as strategic business partners has come. They can do this by accessing big data metrics and improving their talent acquisition strategies. Talent acquisition affects every part of an organization. There is nothing more critical to the ability of an organization to achieve its business objectives. With the help from the appropriate external partners, human resources can help kick start the big data efforts of an organization, make decisions which are more evidence based and create strategic business advantages which will empower the organization as a whole.