Technology and Recruiting: Part III

Virtual Reality Gives Candidates Experiential Insight into Job Opportunities and Company Culture

In the first two blogs of this series we wrote about chatbots, and then about artificial intelligence and machine learning. But there’s another technology that’s having a significant impact in recruiting, and that’s virtual reality, more commonly known as “VR.”

Virtual reality relies on computer-generated images and a variety of sensors to immerse users in a virtual world. And it’s not just diehard gamers who find value in that experience anymore. Whether for business or pleasure, virtual reality is slowly gaining mainstream acceptance and is no longer a symbol of the future but part of the here and now. So, throw on your VR headset and let’s have a look at what corporate recruiting and talent acquisition teams are doing with the virtual world to get candidates to accept positions with their firms in the real one.

VR Lets Candidates “Live” Out Their New Roles

For certain positions, virtual reality can lend a great deal of insight, which helps businesses attract talent in the present and reduce employee attrition in the future. Thinking of becoming a diver working on offshore oil rigs? VR can take you on a virtual dive to get you better acclimated to the future career you’re considering. Perhaps you’re in consideration for position overseeing an international hotel chain. Thanks to virtual reality, a recruiter can save you time and money on airfare and let you tour the company’s hotels whether they’re in Los Angeles or Beijing, Stockholm or Buenos Aires, or any place in between. Speaking of hotels, Hyatt is now using virtual reality as an educational tool in its community hire program with the goal of bringing in 10,000 new workers to careers in hospitality.

While candidates are strongly drawn to a position by its job description, salary, and location, landing them typically also involves selling them on your company’s culture and working environment. Using VR to give virtual office and campus tours to candidates willing to relocate can be invaluable in maintaining their interest and saving time and travel costs throughout the recruiting process. They can be greeted at the front desk and guided throughout the building at the perfect pace, seeing everything you think will give them the best sense of what its like to work there. They’ll still need to visit in person before making the big move but, having “toured” once already, candidates will already be able to envision themselves working there.

Recruiting Fit for the Next Generation

While the concept of virtual reality may still seem futuristic to some of us, for twenty-somethings and soon-to-be-college graduates of Generation Z it’s simply today’s xBox or PlayStation. Having grown up with the latest advancements in video game technology, lining their hands with sensor-laden gloves and strapping on goggles that could have been used in the latest Star Wars film is something they’re prone to embrace when learning about job opportunities and employers.

As you might expect, this means VR adds significant value for firms that recruit on college campuses and at career fairs. Want to see what our corporate campus is like? Here, try these on. What activities does the role involve? Instead of me explaining it to you, why don’t you see for yourself! It makes for a memorable and exciting experience for potential candidates. Firms that use VR technology stand out from their competition in booth visitors’ minds, while also gaining additional awareness in a matter of minutes into which candidates might be best suited for the roles they need to fill.

VR’s Recruiting Potential Has Its Limits—For Now

Recruiting teams that leverage VR applications tap into its potential to make the recruiting process more engaging and efficient. However, while great strides are being made in adoption, there are several technical and cost barriers that must be overcome before it finds broader appeal on the recruiting and talent management front.  

Unless candidates are interviewing in-person and can use your VR setup, they’ll need to already have their own headset and download and install the required apps. And—as gamers know—they’ll need to have computing and networking technology with high-performance capabilities that can get pricey fast. And, even with all that, virtual reality is more virtual than reality, and there’s only so much one can take away from a computer-generated experience than they would otherwise find in the real world. This will always be an issue regardless of how lifelike VR experiences become.

HireLabs Can Ramp Up Your Real-World Recruiting

We hope this blog series on current technology applications has lent insight that can be applied to your own talent acquisition efforts. Chatbots, AI tools, and virtual reality systems are growing in use and popularity as each of these technologies continues to evolve.  

Yet, while these products can bolster your hiring efforts, they can’t do so alone. It takes experienced recruiters with vast networks to ensure your organization is finding and hiring the most qualified candidates. So, if you need to augment your recruiting capabilities, let HireLabs help. We recruit a range of positions for technology firms and have a keen understanding of what startups need to succeed. Contact us today!

As always, comments are welcome.