5 myths about recruiting chatbots, busted

Jan 23, 2020 - Cat DiStasio

People keep saying artificial intelligence is taking over. Perhaps it will someday rise to the point of being commonplace but, for now, AI in recruiting is still somewhat rare.

Our research shows 84 percent of job seekers haven’t interacted with a recruiting chatbot, which means the experience is still special and unique among organizations that are using AI tools on the frontlines of their conversational recruiting efforts.

Why don’t more employers use recruiting chatbots, if they are such an easy way to differentiate your organization from your competitors? As we talk with the TA leaders who eventually become our customers, we’ve heard a lot of concerns that kept them from pursuing the technology in the past. Fortunately, many of those fears are just rumors or misconceptions that simply aren’t true. Yet, the myths have not ceased. That’s because most people aren’t familiar with the ins and outs of recruiting chatbots: the requirements, how they work, the benefits they offer, and the strategies that make the most out of them.  In today’s blog post, we’ll share some of the most common myths we’ve heard about recruiting chatbots and we’ll do what should be done with every unfounded myth: we’ll bust them. 

Myth #1: Job seekers don’t like chatbots

In our experience serving TA teams at leading organizations across the country, and in our research, we’ve learned that this myth is simply not true. Although most job seekers haven’t interacted with a recruiting chatbot yet, those who have favor the experience. In general, job seekers crave communication with hiring organizations, especially in the pre-application stage, and any vehicle that delivers a communication touch point will win you brownie points with your candidates.

It’s not a matter of a few degrees of difference, either. The impact of chat conversations could radically improve your conversion rates. For instance, our research revealed that more than 57 percent of job seekers would be likely or very likely to apply after talking to a recruiter. Many TA teams add a recruiting chatbot as a bridge to online chats with live recruiters.

Myth #2: A recruiting chatbot is too difficult to install

It’s true that the technology that runs a recruiting chatbot is more complicated than you or I can understand. The good news is that all that happens behind the scenes and the act of actually using a chatbot are very simple. Installing a recruiting chatbot is actually super easy to do. After setting up the chatbot (adding responses and giving your chatbot a “voice”), it only requires adding a few lines of code to the web page where you want the chatbot to live, whether that’s a main careers site or an individual job req page. Cutting and pasting the code and updating the web page is all it takes to add a recruiting chatbot to your TA team. 

Myth #3: Recruiting chatbots are too expensive

Innovative technology requires an investment that many organizations consider a hefty expense. However, like any investment, you have to consider the return. A recruiting chatbot works 24/7 to greet job seekers, answer basic questions, direct site visitors to the information they want, and collect contact information for follow-up conversations. These are all functions that don’t exist without a chatbot. And the numbers don’t lie. When we look at an average across all of our customers who use a recruiting chatbot, we find that the chatbot converts 40% more candidates while saving tens of hours per recruiter per month.

Recruiting chatbots also help alleviate the burden of menial tasks for your human recruiters. The investment in a recruiting chatbot can effectively help your TA team do more in less time, freeing up recruiters to spend more time with each candidate at later stages of the recruiting process. Investing in HR technology buys your team the capacity to work on your biggest talent acquisition goals.

Myth #4: A chatbot will make job seekers leave your careers site

Job seekers have a lot of reasons for abandoning a careers site or not finishing an application. Among the top reasons are long or overly complicated applications, technical difficulties, and a poor mobile experience. Recruiting chatbots are nowhere on the list. To the contrary, a recruiting chatbot can directly address these immediate complaints. A recruiting chatbot can help answer basic questions a job seeker has about the position or application process, alleviating confusion. Recruiting chatbots are also optimized for the mobile experience, ensuring job seekers can interact smoothly regardless of what kind of device they are using. And like we mentioned before, recruiting chatbots will actually increase the engagement levels as well as conversion rates by 40%.

Myth #5: Recruiters won’t like having a chatbot on the team

We still argue that AI isn’t taking over, especially in the recruiting role as good recruiting requires a lot of skills AI can’t replicate. But your human team might still be skeptical about adding an AI tool to the team. Once your recruiting chatbot is up and running, and its role is clearly defined, human recruiters will breathe a sigh of relief. As we mentioned earlier, a recruiting chatbot can handle many of the menial tasks and repetitive conversations that slow human recruiters down. A recruiting chatbot conversation offers a positive first impression and sets up expectations for the rest of the candidate experience, so when a job seeker interacts with a human recruiter after a chatbot conversation, they are already in a positive mindset. This can drastically change the role of your human team, who may be accustomed to talking to frustrated, confused candidates who need reassurance that they are important to your organization. A recruiting chatbot helps provide that feeling to job seekers around the clock and without tiring. What human recruiter wouldn’t love that result?

The truth about recruiting chatbots

These myths only scratch the surface of the rumors and misconceptions floating around the internet about recruiting chatbots. The best way to tackle your concerns is head on, by learning more about how recruiting chatbots work and what they can do. At the end of the day, a recruiting chatbot is a valuable member of your TA team, and one that can elevate your candidate experience and employer brand to new heights.

For more advice on choosing the right recruiting chatbot for your team, check out The Recruiting Chatbot Revolution Playbook.

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