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The Evolution of RPA and IA in the Technology of Talent Acquisition



Every year, billions of dollars are spent on HR technology across the globe. It is a critical investment for any organisation that wants to stay ahead of the competition. In a 2020 global PwC survey of over 600 HR and HR information technology (IT) leaders, 74 percent of respondents stated that they planned to increase spending on HR tech to address pressing talent acquisition and retention needs.


An increasingly popular technology in talent acquisition, RPA (robotic process automation) and IA (intelligent automation) were initially implemented in data-driven sectors such as financial services, but its versatility has driven new sectors and business sizes to adopt it. Human resources and talent acquisition are starting to use RPA for a range of applications such as data analytics, screening, and data entry. RPA can take on these processes and leave more critical work that requires a human element -such as building a strong employer brand and putting in the necessary systems to retain as well as attract talent. 


RPA has grown exponentially in the last year, largely due to the pandemic. A Deloitte study published late last year highlighted that 73 percent of organisations worldwide are now using automation technologies, a stark rise from the reported 48 percent in 2019. Separate research from Deloitte indicates that over 50 per cent of standard HR processes from strategic processes to daily operations can be done via robotic automation. The use of RPA can help post or update hundreds of thousands of jobs across the globe every week through various networks and can generate as much as 30 percent of shortlists for a programme using intelligent automation insourcing.


RPA and its potential applications in HR and TA are incredibly exciting, particularly when merged with AI and machine learning. As more instances for this technology come to light, its implementation will ramp up to encompass job functions that were previously assumed to require human input. The human touch will remain essential, however, as judgment is not easily replaced, and recruiters and talent acquisition specialists will continue to hold vital roles. 


The future for intelligent automation is bright -- IA, RPA and machine learning will align so that more processes can be automated. From a talent acquisition perspective, candidate vetting, and resume scanning will become more sophisticated to tackle issues associated with unconscious bias. RPA will likely have a significant impact on the overall candidate experience as well. Tools already exist that not only match candidates with the job description but can also assess the candidate’s cultural fit for the hiring company.


The future of technology-enabled recruitment will move away from the current state of labour-intensive tasks that degrades user experience, challenges compliance, and prevents predictability in the recruitment process. It is evolving into a future proof method that improves candidate experience and streamlines the talent acquisition process due to the incorporation of RPA and IA technology.


Matt Jones – Senior Vice President Operations, Cielo


Matt Jones helps organisations across the globe to understand, acquire, retain and mobilise talent to deliver superior business results, which is then delivered by Cielo’s new innovative Cielo Talent Cloud Platform and is supported by creative and continually improving talent management services. Cielo is the world’s leading provider of global talent acquisition and management solutions. Cielo leverages its global scale, customised, innovative solutions and entrepreneurial agility to help clients achieve sustained people advantage and outstanding business outcomes underpinned by world-class, technology-enabled solutions.