BLOG: How Technology Choices Determined Staffing Firm’s Performance During the Pandemic

Before COVID-19, technology was an important part of the staffing and recruitment industry. Over the past decade, firms have relied more on technology to increase production and scale their operations. The necessity to automate the recruitment process has increased exponentially over the past year. While some companies failed to adapt, the firms that utilized technology didn’t just weather the storm, they thrived under unprecedented circumstances.

CMO of CEIPAL, Peter Velikin, discusses key findings directly correlating the rate of technology adoption and the success of staffing firms during the pandemic.

How CEIPAL Measured the Success of Staffing Firms in the Pandemic

Before the pandemic shook our industry to its core, CEIPAL and TechServe Alliance created an index to measure the success of staffing firms in relation to their adoption of technology. The metrics used included billing, new job orders, and placement. Data was collected before the COVID-19 lockdowns in the early part of 2020 creating a great baseline to measure how well firms performed during the pandemic.

The index tracked KPIs monthly from firms ranging in size from small companies to enterprises consisting of over 200 consultants. Performance during the pandemic and in recovery was correlated with each firm’s adoption of 8 technologies. The data found that successful firms prioritized and utilized technology to adapt.

Why Were Some Firms More Successful During the Pandemic?

Firms that outperformed their competition adopted automation in their recruitment and business processes. Fewer job orders were available at the beginning stages of the pandemic. Companies that saw success improved and automated their internal process. By closely monitoring data, these firms were able to identify and resolve issues raising their success rate tremendously.

By using artificial intelligence to rank candidates, successful firms were able to streamline their internal processes. Companies that failed went back to sifting through job boards. These firms didn’t use their investment in AI and automation to instantly organize resumes with a higher probability of success.

Businesses that incorporated a mobile phone app saw a consistent increase in the number of resumes per job, fewer no-shows, and an increase in the number of starts.

What Technologies did Successful Staffing Firms Prioritize During the Recovery?

As the industry bounced back, companies that prioritized technology continued to see success relevant to their competition. In the early recovery, firms that automated their engagement and marketing performed much better than the competition that failed to adopt these technologies.

The most significant factor both during the pandemic and in the early recovery was automating the recruitment process. Firms that utilized technology in recruiting performed 36% better than the competition during the pandemic and 39% better in the early recovery.

Using Technology to Automate Correlates Directly with Success

Increasing efficiency and production with automation is not a new concept. Automation in the staffing and recruitment industry has been trending for years. The pandemic amplified the urgency to utilize technology. By empowering their teams with great technology, many firms were able to thrive during these uncertain times.

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