Hottest hiring trends for 2020

November 4, 2019
6 mins

2020 looks like it’s going to be a phenomenal year for the recruitment industry. As a tech assessment company, we’re lucky to be able to regularly swap ideas with HR leaders, visit conferences, and read up on industry experts’ findings. Based on our findings, here’s the scoop:

1. An increase in employee referrals and referral programs

82% of employers rated employee referrals above all other sources for generating the best return on investment (ROI) – source: careerbuilder

There is a reason why they say that two heads are better than one. Your team is first-hand proof of what you stand for as an employer brand. Hence, it is very important that they are your strongest advocates. This is one of the main reasons why we will see an increased focus on collaborative hiring in the upcoming year.

Employee Referrals program: Hottest Hiring trends

Here is a 5 step guide to building the perfect employee referral program:

    1. Determine the goal – Have a clear vision of what your referral program should accomplish. Is it to boost diversity? Is it to increase your remote workforce? Once you have this broad goal set, get more specific—check how you can increase the percentage of referrals or how to improve the quality of referrals.
    2. Create an easy, employee-friendly process – The less work an employee has to do to refer a candidate, the more successful the program will be. 
    3. Train your workforce – Train your workforce on the following:
      • How to use the referral system
      • An understanding of what your company is looking for in a referred candidate
      • What employees can expect when they refer a candidate
    4. Don’t forget to say kudos – Recognize employees who are referring candidates. At HackerEarth, we run a cool referral program for our employees. Perks include handsome referral bonuses and a chance to win some awesome tech gadgets.
    5. Measure your efforts – Some useful metrics to track your referral program are:
      • What % of your hires have come from referrals
      • The % of qualified referrals (referrals who meet the mark)
      • How engaged is your workforce in the referral program
      • What is the quality of hires from the referral program

2. A shift from resume-based hiring to non-conventional hiring

Did you know that Google receives close to 2 million job applications in a year and recruiters spend an average of 6 seconds looking at a candidate’s resume – source: The Ladders

resume-based hiring: hiring trends 2002

Resumes are passé and recruiters are using new hiring tactics like never before. Here are some non-conventional hiring tips for shortlisting candidates:

  • Administer a personality test earlier in the hiring process – Good developers, for example, are known to exhibit traits that mark high performance such as teamwork, analytical thinking, and judgment. Looking out for such traits in the initial stages of evaluation can help you shortlist candidates who could be the right fit for the role.

  • Gamify your hiring process Using Artificial Intelligence in the hiring process helps measure specific elements like technical skills, vocabulary, facial expressions, and question response speed. These factors can also help reveal clues about an applicant’s education, intelligence, personality, and emotional stability. For example, Unilever makes use of Pymetrics to recruit and sort job applicants.

“Recruitment is part of a broader trend of using gamification in the workplace. Gamification uses game mechanics and experience design to engage users and solve real-world problems, by tapping into human psychology and rewarding positive behaviors in the workplace. Traditional recruitment processes can be intimidating and stressful for candidates and adding elements of games can make the experience more enjoyable as well as bringing out deeper aspects of the candidate’s psychology and behavioral styles.” – Kerstin Oberprieler, Gamification Expert

  • Use skill-based assessments Looking to test and filter candidates on job competency? One great way of doing this is to incorporate skill-based assessments in your hiring process. In fact, one should not only be looking at skill-based assessments for screening, but the entire hiring process should be based on skills.

3. A boom in Gen Z hiring

Did you know that 61 million Gen Zers will enter the US workforce in the coming years – source: CNBC

Gen Z hiring: Hottest hiring 2020

Gen Zers will form a major chunk of the workforce in the coming years. This makes it very important for recruiters to understand their needs and wants. Both millennials and Gen Zers come with their own skill sets yet both could not be more different from one another. With the oldest of Gen Zers being in the age group of 23 to 25, most recruiters can’t use the same tactics which work for millennials.

To solve this puzzle, recruiters need to understand why recruiting Gen Z is so different, what they care and don’t care about the work/workplace, and how to effectively recruit and retain this talent. You can find some great hacks for recruiting Gen Zers in this webinar.

4. Embracing remote work

Did you know that in the past two years alone, there’s been a 78% increase in LinkedIn job posts advertising flexible work arrangements? – source: Remote year

Remote work:Hottest hiring trends 2020

Every distributed team looks different, but they all have one thing in common: they’re the future of work. Since distributed teams are set to become the norm, it’s key that you adapt and update your management skills for this new mode of work.

Here are some strategies to get you into a remote management mindset for great results with remote teams:

  1. Think remote-first -Start with how to manage teams remotely—maybe through a tool like Trello or with daily stand-ups via Zoom—and then see how this fits into the in-office group.
  2. Use the same communication channels – Make sure you’re using the same processes with your in-office and remote workers. Slack is a great solution for communication. It is immediate and leaves a digital paper trail so that deadlines and expectations are clearly agreed upon.
  3. Collaborate using digital management tools – There are great digital tools out there to boost collaboration. Tools like Slack, Asana, or Basecamp can promote easy and instant communication so that your team stays connected and nimble.
  4. Create social spaces online – In addition to getting work done, you should also build relationships within your distributed team. This will make your team members feel more unified as not feeling part of the team can be a big challenge for working remotely. Some ideas include channels or boards for sharing photos of your weekend plans, social events such as virtual happy hours, or even a Friday email sharing stories from the week.
  5. Celebrate success in public – When remote workers feel “out of the loop,” it’s usually because they don’t see how they’re positively impacting the team or company. One way to solve this isolation is to communicate success stories across the company. Send a weekly email of successes or use a Slack channel to give regular shout outs to good work. Your workers will feel appreciated and more engaged in their job.

5. Looking beyond the conventional skill set

Did you know that 84% of recruiters say culture fit is a prominent factor in the hiring process – source: cubiks

Looking beyond the conventional skill set: Hottest hiring trends 2020

Competition for top talent is at an all time high with recruiters finding it challenging to hire candidates who fit both culturally and skill-wise. Most organizations are now looking beyond industry standards and are hiring candidates who are eager to learn.

According to the balance careers, here’s how you can create your own cross-training program for candidates:

  1. Look within your own function for opportunities to cross-train on assignments.
  2. Establish a formal job rotation across your organization.
  3. Offer incentives for certifying on a variety of positions, functions, systems or products.
  4. Measure employee feedback on their interest in and satisfaction with the cross-training work. Ask for their ideas on improving the initiative.

There you have it, our selection of recruiting trends to look out for in 2020. This isn’t an exhaustive list but we hope it gives a direction to your hiring plans for the upcoming year. Happy hiring!


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About the Author

Soumya Chittigala
Soumya drives product marketing at HackerEarth. When she is not marketing SaaS products,chances are that she's baking cupcakes, binge-watching shows on Netflix or fantasizing about her next travel adventure.

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