A match made by AI

Indeed’s new Smart Sourcing product a “game changer” for candidate sourcing.

The pitch to the recruiter was compelling.

No, the candidate didn’t have five years of experience, which had been listed as a prerequisite for the position. They did, however, boast comparable skills and relative experience within their four years of work history.

“In a nutshell, it’s about making the recruiter’s life more efficient and effective, while providing time savings.”

Deepti Patibandla, Indeed

And they were actively looking for a role, unlike many of the others who would appear to be qualified candidates.

In short, this was not someone who should be overlooked. At least, according to AI. 

“From a sourcing, hiring, recruiting perspective, AI is a game changer,” says Deepti Patibandla, Senior Director of Product at Indeed. 

As the world’s largest job site, Indeed has long been at the forefront of technological innovation in candidate sourcing for top Canadian employers and job hunters. 

The company recently launched a new employer product called Smart Sourcing, which leans on AI technology to surface candidates who best match job requirements, while prioritizing those actively looking for a new opportunity. The tool automatically generates summaries about each candidate explaining to recruiters why they should be considered for the role. 

It is designed to address a major pain point identified by Indeed: the time it takes to hire and find quality talent.

Employers indicate it typically takes about two and a half weeks to review resumes for an open role, with the entire hiring process taking an average of seven weeks.  This slow pace comes with real costs for businesses and workers, said Indeed, especially in the tech sector. 

In a recent Indeed survey, employers named candidate sourcing as their biggest hiring challenge, followed by communication with candidates, background checks and resume screening.

Attempts to find the right match have impacts on job hunters too, with 57 percent of Canadian respondents telling Indeed they have been contacted in the past about a job that is not relevant to them.

Patibandla explains that Smart Sourcing represents an evolution of Indeed’s previous products to provide a recommendation-first experience, incorporating more AI and enterprise capabilities.

“Algorithm-driven platforms can help recruiters find hidden gems and diverse candidates who might otherwise be overlooked.”

“In a nutshell, it’s about making the recruiter’s life more efficient and effective, while providing time savings,” she said.

For example, to help recruiters expedite the outreach process, the platform automatically generates personalized messages based on the candidate’s unique profile, the specifications of the job, and the employer brand. 

According to Indeed customer surveys, Smart Sourcing saves users an average of 2.5 hours per position each week on sourcing qualified candidates, and another 7.8 hours each week in the overall recruiting and hiring process.

“AI is one of those huge complimentary tools in terms of driving that efficiency and letting employers — and job seekers — focus on other aspects that are more human,” said Patibandla.

Employers and job seekers seem to agree that technology can help. Indeed found that 44 percent of employers believe AI-based hiring software can help them identify good candidates more easily when hiring someone for a new job.

Of course, these new tools must be developed and deployed responsibly. 

Smart Sourcing, like all of Indeed’s AI tools, was developed in close collaboration with the company’s internal Responsible AI Team, and in accordance with Indeed’s ethical AI principals. 

The tool is designed to help employers spot talent they might have otherwise missed, said Hannah Calhoon, Indeed’s Head of AI Innovation. It can also help avoid inherent biases that prevent people from accessing employment opportunities.

“Algorithm-driven platforms can help recruiters find hidden gems and diverse candidates who might otherwise be overlooked,” said Calhoon. 

AI doesn’t replace the ‘human’ in human resources, she noted. Rather, it is a useful tool to make hiring the right talent faster and easier, freeing up more time for recruiters to connect with candidates in a meaningful way.

Smart Sourcing accomplishes that by focusing on critical skills, rather than school or employer names, she says.

“The world has witnessed many rapid developments in AI and we will continue to approach these changes with an open mind and a desire to learn and improve, to help our users find meaningful employment,” said Calhoon. “With AI, we hope to make the hiring process more efficient and match quality candidates with employers.” 

While Indeed isn’t the only hiring platform seeking to inject more AI functionality into the hiring process, it does have the advantage of being the largest job site in the world, with 315 million unique monthly visitors and more than 9.5 million in Canada alone. 

“We really have the biggest data pool to draw from,” says Patibandla. “That’s the secret sauce that makes the product work so well.” 

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Learn more about Indeed Smart Sourcing

Feature image courtesy of Unsplash.

Jared Lindzon

Jared Lindzon

Jared Lindzon is a freelance journalist, public speaker and BetaKit contributor who has been reporting on technology, entrepreneurship, and the Future of Work for over a decade. Through that period his work has been featured in many of the world's top news publications, and often focuses on how global, national, local, and organizational policy decisions influence individuals. As a public speaker Lindzon is regularly called upon to share those insights in keynote presentations and appear on panels alongside some of the world’s leading business, political, and cultural figures. Born, raised, and based in Toronto, Lindzon earned a Master of Arts in Journalism degree from the University of Western Ontario, where he also received an Honours BA in Media Studies.

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