Why Reference Checking in Recruitment is More Important Post Covid-19

There’s no denying that the COVID-19 pandemic changed the way people work, and no industry experienced as great a change as recruitment. 

We don’t know for sure whether lockdowns, remote working and furloughs will permanently change the workplace, but in recruitment, we are seeing a large shift in worker expectations for flexible hours and remote work.

Big changes in recruitment

Now, people are actively looking for flexible hours and remote work, empowered by the proof of concept that lockdowns gave. Now people know they can do a job at home, they want to make the change permanent!

Recruitment also saw other big changes. Fuelled by communication barriers, reference checking in recruitment became more digitalised than ever, video interviews became the norm, locations no longer limited talent pools (due to remote working) and the demand for employment in certain sectors was transformed overnight.

The reference checking challenge

Arguably the biggest challenge recruiters faced was reference checking in a world without the traditional way to check references (email and phone).

To find a solution, recruiters turned to automated reference checking platforms that automate the communication process between a company, the applicant and the referee to free up resources, save time and assure reference quality.

Of all the changes the COVID-19 pandemic brought to recruitment, the technological innovation of automated reference checking is one of the most positive, and it’s a change that is likely to grow as the world moves towards automation.

Reference checking is now more important than ever

In the post-COVID-19 world, demand for companies and industries has shifted, employers are offering more flexible hours, workers are demanding remote work, and professionals are rethinking their purpose and what they want from a job.

Underneath this, you have a recruitment industry trying to assure applicant quality when people haven’t worked for a while or have been working remotely.

Let us assure you that it is more difficult to vet applicants when previous employers have a significant knowledge gap from the COVID-19 pandemic. Getting references can be a pain because employers aren’t motivated.

All this leads to one thing – reference checking is more crucial than ever when hiring, whether for a high-end executive role or a junior position.

But with more applicants wanting a change in work lifestyle and UK job vacancies at their highest levels since pre-pandemic, recruiters, agencies, and employers have their work cut out to keep up with demand and assure reference quality.

Automation for the win

Reference checking is notorious for being a frustrating process broken by communication problems, time zones and inaccurate information.

Just as it’s easier to press a button on a coffee machine than to manually grind coffee and wait for the kettle to boil, it’s easier to automate reference checking than to do it manually. Manual reference checking is obsolete!

Automated reference checking tools are nothing new for recruiters, who have used internal systems to automate communication between departments for years. However, front-facing tools that are SaaS (software-as-a-service) are something new, giving recruiters small and large a powerful and scalable way to automate the process.

The reason automated reference checking is so powerful is that it speeds up a time to reference. With less time spent communicating between a company, the applicant, and the referee, jobs are filled faster, and the recruitment process runs slicker.

Automated reference checking benefits

There are several clear benefits to using automated reference checking tools:

  • Speed up time to reference
  • Beat communication barriers
  • Beat time zones
  • Free up resources
  • Assure information accuracy
  • Increase volume of response
  • Track reference progress in real-time
  • Comply with the GDPR (everything is assured by software)

Now is the time to try AutoRefs!

Automated reference checking will unlock significant resources in your recruitment process if you are a recruiter, agency, or employer that hires.

However, not all tools are created equal. The best of the bunch is undoubtedly AutoRefs, the cloud-based reference checking tool. It cuts out all the paperwork with a streamlined, online system that compiles all information for you.

Here’s how it works simply:

  • Create a candidate profile
  • Create a custom questionnaire
  • Send a reference request to the applicant
  • The candidate provides referee details
  • Referees receive the request and respond

As you can see, this process skips several manual tasks:

  • Communicating with the candidate
  • Receiving referee details
  • Communicating with the referee
  • Receiving references back disjointedly (email, Google Docs, Office 365, etc.)

All references and data are in the cloud, accessible anywhere globally, so long as you have the login credentials for your AutoRefs account. It means employers, recruiters and agencies can manage references without being tied to any internal system.

Why AutoRefs is an epic tool

AutoRefs is the most refined SaaS tool of its kind, infinitely scalable to support thousands of candidates and manage tens of thousands of references.

Unlike other cloud-based reference checking tools, AutoRefs is built for global recruiters with hundreds of thousands of candidates. Yet, the simplicity of the system makes it ideal for small recruiters with only hundreds of candidates.

With AutoRefs, you will realise the following benefits immediately:

  • Accept better applications (customise your questions to get to the important stuff, avoiding any fluff).
  • Increase reference response rate (the applicants and referees do not need to create an account – they simply receive a safe and secure link to respond).
  • Cut call time chasing references (don’t chase – send and wait!).
  • Improve due diligence on applications (the level of data you can collect from questionnaires is vast, ensuring you have all the information you need to make good hiring decisions).

AutoRefs is easy to use for recruitment agencies, traders, employers and anyone that hires and manages job applications.

Importantly, the SaaS model is flexible and scalable. You can use AutoRefs on either a pay-as-you-go basis or subscribe for discounts.

We recommend giving AutoRefs a try. It’s free to get started and requires very little learning to master. Alternatively, book a demo to find out more.