One of the key issues HRDs face currently as they source products and services that deliver key elements of the HR function is fragmentation of solutions and therefore fragmentation of data. And nowhere is this more prevalent than in the assessment space. Although the majority of point solutions have been moved from analogue to high-tech, these don’t currently link together to deliver business outcomes or strategic focus.
Other business functions such as marketing or operations have already made the shift away from a galaxy of ‘point’ solutions (that do one narrow task well), to a smaller number of core platform applications that integrate a whole process, for example marketing automation system, HubSpot. This is desperately needed in the HR space, where there are excellent solutions at the macro level, but a unified assessment platform that replaces a complex set of piecemeal tech solutions that then fits with the core macro HR solution, is currently missing.
By using a smaller number of broader plugins that integrate with these core HR systems, it’s possible to enable the macro systems to become data-led and much more strategic. In the assessment space this means integrating all the assessment steps from application through to hire, complementing the limitations of the core HR system in use. So, for example, moving away from a fragmented and convoluted world involving different tools for initial screening or psychometrics, perhaps a separate video interview tool, and then a paper-based approach to interviews and assessment centres.
Once you have these integrated systems set up for assessment, it’s then possible to link it up with platforms that deliver data and analytics across the entire talent management cycle, enabling a 360° view on the employee journey and what it means for business growth. This approach is much more likely to yield business benefit than ‘digitising’ the existing messy process with numerous point solutions and can bring true insights on what makes a high performer in your organisation, as well as ensuring you hire the high performers who are more likely to be retained in the long term.
However, be warned, there are many tech solutions that have not had enough domain knowledge in for example, psychology or compliance to deliver robust solutions. In terms of data and analysis, AI has massive potential to power joined up solutions across platforms to drive fairer, more effective people decisions across the lifecycle. This is because algorithms can be programmed to quickly and efficiently analyse assessment data in real time. If the algorithms are then linked to the data collected later on in the lifecycle, for example performance management, an organisation is able to recruit more successfully, ensuring that those success markers are part of the initial assessment process. However, to ensure this AI technology is applied responsibly, the HR function has to have a critical role as the guardian of ethics and good practice in the process.
By creating a seamless end-to-end assessment journey with data collected and importantly, used, at every step, not only does the process becomes customised, ensuring a coherent experience for both candidates and managers, but it also feeds into your wider business outcomes by tracking a set of key performance markers throughout the talent lifecycle. This elevates an assessment process from simply being about hiring candidates for specific roles, to aligning recruitment to business strategy and directly influencing business productivity and growth.
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