We're Not in Kansas Anymore: What Recruiting Will Look Like in 25 Years
I walked into a meeting the other day and noticed a few employees having a discussion they were totally into. With my interest piqued I subtly approached them to eavesdrop, like any good HR pro would do, on what they were talking about.
It turned out they had started the conversation by talking about all of the changes which had taken place over the course of 2009. They referenced the market improvements, staffing changes, and celebrity gossip. But, as they kept talking about change, the timeline became more drawn out. At some point, they got to the most significant changes they had seen since they began their careers almost 25 years ago (the group was mostly boomers). I couldn't help but build the same level of interest they were showing. Some of the things they mentioned were:
- Ashtrays at every desk. It didn't matter if you smoked; you had to have an ashtray at your desk, in case a smoker stopped by because they were not to drop ashes on the floor.
- One computer (called a terminal) on a “lazy Susan” in the middle of five desks. When you needed it you just twisted it to face you and shared it with your teammates.
- E-mail. When e-mail first came out, employees would talk about how it was so stupid to have electronic messages, and they thought it was just a fad that would fade quickly.
As I listened, I started to feel a sense of pride in my generation. We would never tolerate sharing a computer or breathing in someone else's unhealthy habit. We are after all, Gen Y—the go-getters who demand to make positive change on a daily basis. And I am proud of that. Then, I thought a little more.
Inevitably, we will be telling the same types of stories in 25 years. Advancements in technology are speeding up, not slowing down. It is very likely there will be even more drastic change in our lifetime than that of past generations. So, I asked myself, “What are the things recruiters do today which will be looked back on and scoffed at?” I was surprised at how hard it was to answer this question, but here are a few of the things I came up with:
- Video conferencing will dominate the interview scene. The next generation of recruiters will find it hard to believe we actually made hiring decisions based on a phone call. I can just hear them, “You can't even see how people dress, they could be in their pajamas!” Video conference technology will be much less expensive and utilized by all recruiters (if it's not replaced by teleporters, you hear me trekkies).
- College career fairs will not exist. Due to more efficient selection, the utility of career fairs will fall to a point where they are no longer attended by employers. What will be the new source of revenue for career services?
- Assessment use will be much more prolific. With advancement comes a drive to quantify decision-making, and assessments are a great way to do this for hiring. The problem is they are a logistical nightmare due to travel, and online assessments inherently present the potential of faking. Biometric scanners will fix the faking concern and employment law will eventually catch up to the fact that good assessments are much less biased than hiring managers.
- And here is my long shot: Y our LinkedIn profile will have a section to upload your genetic report card so recruiters can consider your potential health care cost. Unless health-care reform really impacts the rising cost of health-care.
Josh Ingalls is a campus relations consultant for Principal Financial Group in Des Moines, Iowa. Originally published on www.fistfuloftalent.com, a blog for HR professionals and recruiters, and reprinted with permission.