Should we innovate to recruit better?

There is pandemonium in recruitment! Methods are diversifying and technologies are redesigning the process outline. To the point of forgetting a resume and interview for hiring? Not sure.

To find their future department head in Lille, Lidl reserved “Atelier des Chefs”, a place where they can propose cooking courses. Far from presenting themselves, the candidates had to realise, by group, each stage of their menu. In the recruitment office CCLD, the future sellers of the parisian store Tiger (designer of low cost products), discover products sold there and need to imagine alternative ways to use them. At Etam, the stores welcome time and again, after hours for future store directors to have a cocktail. Finally, Decathlon and Carrefour rely on algorithms to target those most likely to integrate well into their business. A revolution that shakes-up the recruitment process? Not so sure. “There have always been complementary tools furthering human evaluation to secure recruitment,” pointed out Martin Villelongue, Director of the Digital Vision in the office of Michael Page. “The novelty is to include technologies applied to HR.”


For certain interests…

Diversified recruitment methods can:

  • Test candidates on other skills
  • Reduce the time to recruit
  • Attract a new target, millennials, who arrive on the market
  • Avoid stressful situations related to formal meetings


… though not universal

  • The resume, even if it’s not always read, resides an essential document
  • An interview rests an essential part of the recruitment process, throughout all offices, but sometimes later on in the process
  • The presentation step in front of the employer is a key moment in the decision making process both for the company and candidate


Preselecting Candidates

Two majors changes have evolved hiring. The first being: new methods, sometimes extravagant, deployed to test the candidate. The future objective? The desire to discover other aptitudes, through these means, that aren’t mentioned on the resume or interview (like their respect of hierarchy, the way they work or behave in a group). The DHRs interviewed on this subject praised these ideas. For example, L’Oréal and Decathlon have put in place business games to attract fresh young graduates and to test their capabilities on real issues in the company. L’Oreal has organized business games every year since 1992, and has hired through this, “150 to 200 candidates for all of their brands,” explained Émilie Duquenne, in charge of talent acquisition at L’Oréal. In the same sense, Lidl, who made 4,000 recruits last year, majority of positions in store, increased hiring tests: “Afterwork, job dating, improvisation… these methods help better our recruitment methods but also our hiring brand. They also allows us to recruit a younger population, sensitive to our efforts”, said the DHR of Lidl, François Leroux.


The second major change concerning recruitment is that more distributors are using new offered possibilities by technologies. Monoprix, Picard, Bio c’ Bon and Conforama, notably, rely on a filter put in place by the website Prostudent, enabling the consultation of candidates and positions that correspond to them, for the purpose of screening candidates to present to the company. The AssessFirst society perseus the same intention: they created a series of tests for candidates to pass, to test their capabilities with the company in question and the specific position. “This solution allows a reduced recruitment time. For sales and marketing departments, it took up to an average of 45 days. With such delays, the best profiles could have passed right under the company’s nose,” emphasized David Bernard, CEO of AssessFirst.


The other advantage of these digital tools for distributors: It allows a bigger pool for the pre-screening process of candidates. The DHR of BHV, Fathallah Charef, opted for this solution. Following the sunday opening of his largest store in Paris, he had to reinforce his check-out desk, sales staff and reception staff teams. For these three jobs, an identical and central capacity is required: a sense of customer service. For this situation, AssessFirst developed adequate tests. Within a few weeks, a list of candidates was proposed to BHV, which when necessary, they can draw from the “database”. Saving time, certainly, and proven effectiveness, according Fathallah Charef: “With the use of this solution, the amount of people dropped during the trial period went from 17% to 9%, in one year.”


The resume rests precious for executives

Every time, new technologies “burn” the reading stage of resumes. Even Fathallah Charef  doesn’t read the resumes of candidates received from AssessFirst. Should the resumes be burned? Before lighting the wick, notice: Jobs for which this document is not of use to are entry level positions, where know-how can prevail over the initial skills of the candidate. But a resume remains a precious advantage to add value to their experience…  especially for executives. According to Hays, the needs of recruitment in retail this year will be closely linked to the increase in the amount of stores. Store directors, department managers, and salespeople or self-service employees will be sought after more this year. Not sure that everyone can ignore making a resume.
“We were keen to develop ‘atypical’ recruitment methods, rather than hearing a candidate recite his resume! I think it’s more interesting in order to understand the person we have in front of us. And, of course, that also helps in creating a new image of Lidl.”

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: