Get in front of these 5 trends—and keep your talent teams moving forward.
By Byrne Mulrooney
2013 was a difficult year for many businesses, with the economy continuing to put pressure on organizations to reassess their spend in all divisions, including recruitment and talent management. Workforce issues continued to stack up: an aging workforce, training programs for leadership, and continued globalization—all playing a role
in how an organization manages their talent. Mobile technologies emerged as a clear frontrunner to take the industry into the future. Technology on the whole is setting the agenda in 2014, particularly in the areas of data and social media.
We expect innovation within recruitment to gain greater momentum this year, widening its remit to drive change, improvement, and forward thinking. How? Having collaborated with 17 members of our worldwide leadership team, there are five top trends that will bring recruitment and talent management to the next level.
1. Businesses will start hiring for tomorrow—not just for today.
2014 will see a focus on organizations preparing for what is needed down the line. As economic recovery kicks in and the pace of change increases, forward- thinking companies are already realizing that hiring for today’s skills means work forces could become quickly outdated. Employers need to ensure they are hiring for tomorrow’s competencies and future-proofing their workforce, or else face an uncertain future in a competitive economy. This means taking stock of current talent inventory, and increasing the emphasis on skills auditing to seek out “hidden talent” within the organization. To build the kind of dynamic workforce that holds its value even when deluged by new challenges, organizations need to develop a competency framework. This is especially relevant in companies where the challenge of finding specialist skills is felt most acutely. Every business needs to ensure they have the human capital in place to drive growth.
2. Mobile recruitment will finally take off.
In recent years, “social, mobile, local” has become something of a marketing mantra. But of all of these, it is mobile that’s about to become big news. In many ways it’s surprising that it’s taken this long to get real momentum in the mobile space. For several years, it has been the “year of mobile,” yet for the recruitment sector, it simply hasn’t taken off in a big way. The tipping point is approaching. In 2013 we witnessed the emergence of many companies serving the mobile space, and in 2014 we will see the larger enterprise resource planning players develop their own innovative solutions—and many of those smaller companies will be acquired. As mobile computing goes from strength to strength, this sector within recruitment will inevitably continue its growth, with more transformation products and services related to talent management becoming available on these devices.
3. Big data will drive real decision-making.
Much like mobile, big data has been hotly tipped as a key trend for several years. In the same way that marketers use loyalty data for targeted marketing, recruiters were expected to begin to use big data to find talent. Yet for all the talk, the real impact had yet to materialize. Now though, new services are emerging that can analyze and sort the mass of data held within the world’s biggest organizations, allowing them to figure out what data is relevant so they can gather the right information to make decisions. This infers that in 2014 the challenge and the opportunity will not
be around collecting big data, but rather using it to inform strategic business decisions and demonstrate the return on investment of recruitment activity. With big data finally set to play a grown-up role in the world of recruitment, this will evolve the recruitment function from reactive to proactive, and ensure it is best aligned with the business strategy. There are several interesting start-ups in this space that we expect to make an impact in the coming year.
4. Smarter sourcing will win the day.
For a long time, many businesses have simply challenged recruiting teams to find more people, but companies are beginning to see the importance of investing in a multi-channel approach to sourcing and securing top candidates. 2014 is likely to be the year when more organizations start to develop sophisticated approacheson how to deploy the many sourcing tools and tactics that are available. From the use of talent communities for engaging potential candidates, to developing a compelling employer brand and adopting mobile and campus outreach programs to attract Millennials,
chief HR officers will look to enhance their recruiting strategies to create a highly effective and targeted approach to talent acquisition. Leading companies are doing much more than simply focusing on active candidates. Targeting top-tier passive candidates is increasingly recognized as a priority, a fact which drives home the need to develop strong employer branding and build engaging talent communities.
5. Expect more globalization – but more localization too.
Businesses are inclined to think more globally. With this, there is a move toward full-service providers who can deliver a complete package that combines the benefits of both a global perspective with local market knowledge. Where some organizations try to roll out a ubiquitous approach to all offices around the world, implementing a worldwide solution based on a company’s global structure does not always mean one holistic approach to hiring. Many businesses are seeing the benefits of customizing processes to suit the diversity of each region they are present in.
2014 will be an exciting year for the recruitment and talent management industry. With many predictions revolving around the industry becoming more focused, businesses are expected to implement a more streamlined approach to tacking talent acquisition and planning issues in the next 12 months.
Byrne Mulrooney is CEO of Futurestep.

Tags: RPO & Staffing, Talent Acquisition

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