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Hiring Best Practices

The Value of Embracing Automation in Your Remote Hiring Process

Written By Aditi Chandrasekar | April 27, 2021

Robot interacting with developer virtually

Remote work isn’t going anywhere any time soon. According to a Growmotely survey, 74% of professionals expect remote work to become standard.

Since we can no longer ooh and aah at the alluring in-office perks like an air hockey table or a kombucha tap, the remote hiring experience has now become a factor in a candidate’s next career move. It serves as a lens into how your company manages communication, coordination, and adaptation. That’s why it’s in every hiring team’s best interest to prioritize the candidate experience. 

However, as more and more roles open back up, hiring teams are facing limitations on bandwidth, and the candidate experience suffers. 

That’s where automation comes in. Finding a tool that supports and streamlines your remote hiring process so your team can focus on the one-on-one interactions with candidates will be your key differentiator in hiring top talent. 

We sat down with our very own Chief People Officer, Maria Chung, to discuss the importance of automation in the hiring process and how it enhances the overall interview experience.

Here are the benefits of weaving automation in your remote hiring process:

It helps you to stay competitive 

Right now, all companies are tech companies. This means everyone is competing for tech talent. Building a seamless and transparent hiring process is your competitive advantage when it comes to attracting talent.  

“We're in one of the hottest developer markets in a very long time. So, there's a lot of market demand for companies to be innovative,” says Maria. “Because of that, there is a huge hiring surge of developer talent everywhere. The fact that there's so much competition out there makes it imperative for our recruiting team to be more automated.”

Especially when hiring remotely, Maria suggests prioritizing the interactions between the interviewer and candidate as much as possible. Those connections are what stand out the most when candidates are making their final decisions. 

Maria continues, “Whether it's through standardizing a couple of assessments in the initial pipeline, the greatest competitive leg-up to any company during the hiring process is giving your recruiters time to talk about the brand they're representing.”

It allows your team to communicate asynchronously 

Whether you’re remote or in the office, gathering feedback from your team on a candidate can be a challenge. Someone might mention something on a call, another on Slack, and another team member might have taken notes during the interview but don’t know the best way to share them. 

“Given that we're in a remote world, we're not able to see each other face-to-face and talk through the quality and the quantity of the candidates that we have,” says Maria. “Having these automated processes enables us to be very asynchronous when it comes to hiring the best talent. A source of truth allows our team to go in there in real time and provide the feedback all in one place at a time that’s convenient for them.”

Investing in a tool that allows your team to debrief asynchronously and all in a central place provides a thorough and holistic view of each and every candidate. 

The Candidate Packet is one example of how HackerRank customers are using automation to make hiring decisions quickly and effectively. The Candidate Packet aggregates all the available reports, scorecards, and feedback on a candidate and creates a skill summary report. So whether your team takes notes during or prefers to share their feedback later, it’s all documented in one place. 

Screenshot of the Candidate Packet in HackerRank

It allows you to focus your energy on more important tasks

According to Maria, the most valuable part of hiring is the one-on-one time with the candidates and giving them your undivided attention so they can tell their story and learn about your company. 

Automating menial, administrative tasks gives time back to your hiring team so they can focus on making those connections. 

Because there's such a war for talent, some of the areas that we want our Talent Acquisition team to focus on is on the qualitative aspects of hiring,” says Maria. “Having more insights into the candidate’s background, level of experience, and personal journey, are the conversations that resonate so much more than just going through the overall process. But you can’t ignore the administrative tasks either. By not taking advantage of automation during the hiring process, it takes the time away from some of these really important aspects of how we look at talent.”

HackerRank customers save time during the hiring process by using Automatic Scoring for Data Science Questions when screening for tech talent. This feature automatically grades data science questions in the early stages of recruiting, so the Talent Acquisition manager doesn’t have to rely so heavily on the hiring manager to manually evaluate candidates. 

It helps support assessment validity and reduce unconscious bias 

As Talent Acquisition leaders strive to develop a more diverse and inclusive workforce, reducing unconscious bias continues to remain a challenge. Without a standardized process of evaluating candidates, unconscious bias will inevitably creep in. 

According to an Entelo trends report, 61% of talent acquisition professionals believe recruiting automation can help reduce unconscious bias. 

“We are all human. And with that comes unconscious biases that we may not be thinking about,” says Maria. “Especially when it comes to developer talent, you have to set a certain bar that fits the role you’re hiring for so you're not inserting your own biases into your framework. By automating the first couple of stages in the hiring process, you’re delivering a consistent standard to test against and eliminating any biases that might come into play.” 

At HackerRank, we’ve incorporated reducing unconscious bias into the very fabric of our product by helping Talent Acquisition teams standardize a remote screening process for evaluating all candidates. 

“HackerRank has always led in terms of automated remote hiring through our assessment platform and content,” says Fred Rafilson, HackerRank’s Chief I/O Psychologist. “Because linking skill-based test questions to critical role-specific skills have always been a laborious and time-consuming process, we’re building job analysis, validation, and fairness analysis capabilities directly into our platform. This leap in technology allows our customers to ensure their assessments are not only effective and fair but also will ensure that they are legally defensible and meet federal EEOC and OFCCP requirements.”

Screenshot of Software Engineer Screen in HackerRank

It allows you to gain feedback on your process 

Automation promotes consistency. And when a process is consistent, you measure its performance and identify what areas need improvement.

“It’s all about time-to-hire,” says Maria. “From sourcing and screening the candidates, to sending out invites, and scheduling interviews, we’re always exploring ways to improve the process by reducing time-to-hire. The sweet spot of automation is all about finding gaps or lags where technology could potentially take over, give time back to my team, and still deliver an excellent candidate experience.” 

Investment management organization, Vanguard, has seen a significant reduction in the number of interviews needed in order to hire the same number of high-quality candidates since using HackerRank. Find out more about how Vanguard reduced their time-to-hire by leveraging HackerRank to source and screen top tech talent. 

Making automation work for you 

Automation doesn’t have to be a scary transformation. It begins by simply trying out new technology and testing what works (and doesn’t work) for your team.

Whether you’re ready to jump in and revamp your entire remote hiring process or just starting to get your feet wet, HackerRank can help. Click on the banner below to start screening high-quality tech candidates for free. 

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