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Owning a small businesses is certainly no easy job - especially amidst a global pandemic.

Small business owners face many challenges, especially in their first few years in operation. In fact, about 20% of small businesses fail by the end of their first year, and that number rises to 50% by the end of their fifth year.

So it's no surprise that after the COVID-19 pandemic upended and forced the economy to slow down, many small businesses had to shut their doors for good. As of the last week of March 2020, 38% of small businesses in America stated that it was unlikely that they would re-open their doors as of the end of 2020.

However, to the delight of many, vaccine doses are on the rise, travel is picking up steam again, and studies that have been conducted suggest that we are inching towards a new normal again.

Small businesses have slowly gained traction again after the pandemic forced a slow down of the economy - according to SMB Group’s survey in 2021, 65% of small to medium business respondents (businesses with one to 250 employees) are very or somewhat optimistic about the future of their businesses. 

Though despite this renewal of hope, small businesses are certainly still experiencing growing pains as they try to adapt to the post pandemic world - particularly with their recruiting.

So what are the recruitment challenges that small businesses are facing, and what are they doing to overcome them?


Small Business Recruiting Challenges

Small businesses face a myriad of challenges when it comes to the hiring scene.

According to a pre-pandemic study, 64.2% of small businesses struggle to attract qualified talent.

Compared to larger companies, small businesses lack in time, as well as budget during their talent acquisition process. This means they have less resources to put up job ads, review the job seekers, conduct interviews and identify top talent in applicants, and train the new hires.

And this is exactly why small businesses need to be smarter when it comes to their recruiting process. After all, the employees serve as the pillars of a business in the long run, so selecting the right talent for a company can make or break its success.


Adding AI Technology to the Hiring Process

Covid-19 has indeed accelerated the pre exisiting trends in in digital technologies as company employees all transitioned to remote work, and potential candidates were getting screened via video interview. 

In fact, according to a McKinsey Global Survey of executives, their companies sped up the digitisation of their customer and supply-chain interactions as well as their internal operations by three to four years. 

As AI based tools were quickly and effectively adopted, small business owners began to see how artificial intelligence could be used to maximise their opportunities, and recognise the benefits that it brought to improve their hiring process.

For instance, as company hiring teams transitioned to conducting job interviews via video software, they were able to assimilate artificial intelligence into their hiring processes to automate the administrative tasks, and essentially save the recruiters time to focus on other tasks.

Furthermore, adding artificial intelligence allowed recruiters to reduce their personal unconscious bias when choosing new hires.

Diversity and inclusion have been in the forefront of business owners minds as racial inequality and injustice came to the world centerstage, and hiring managers are realising the benefits of assimilating artificial intelligence into the hiring process to provide objective information to hiring managers in order to help them make fair decisions.

The previously mentioned study further revealed that they expect the digital shift that they made to not be temporary, and are already making the kinds of investments that all but ensure they will stick.


How Small Businesses Can Overcome Hiring Challenges with Artificial Intelligence

Accelerate Recruiter Productivity

It's no secret that small business lack the resources which larger businesses have, such as people and money.

Small business hiring managers are often faced with the challenge of hiring the right applicants while being pressed for time, which can often lead to gut instinct decision making, or the recruiter not being able to get to know the candidates true personalities during their interviews. 

If a hiring manager implements artificial intelligence into their hiring process to fill an open job position, it becomes possible for these hiring managers to seek out the skills and talent from smaller batches, as the artificial intelligence helps streamline the screening process.

Not only does this allow the hiring manager to take into consideration each of the job candidates, but it also allows them to have the time to do what they do best - seek out the skills and talent from smaller batches of applicants.


Improve Employer Brand

Every company has a certain reputation, whether it's through its products, services, or even through the emotions and perception of the brand.

Employer brand, on the other hand, is the way the company is viewed as an employer, and is about the company culture which an organisation provides its employees. Employer brand essentially lives and breathes in the minds of former, current, and future employees of an organisation.

So how can artificial intelligence exactly improve employer brand?

A strong employer brand is key to creating a reliable and sustainable hiring pipeline in the long run.

As hiring managers can use artificial intelligence to match the skills of all the candidates in a given pool with the skills needed to do a certain job well, it gives hiring teams the ability to network and to build candidate relationships at scale.

Through this use of artificial intelligence in the hiring process, candidates are able to learn which employers know how to connect them with opportunities that are a good skills match.

Furthermore, using artificial intelligence during the screening process can speed up this time consuming task immensely and thus quicken the time to hire for potential candidates. This can hugely benefit employer branding for a small business as candidates will have positive experience.


How Retorio's Artificial Intelligence Aids Small Business Recruiting 

Retorio's video-based personality assessment uses artificial intelligence to help organisations find candidates with the right personality, talent and skills.

Such talent acquisition tools like Retorio automate the myriad workflow steps in the recruiting process with distinct inputs and outputs like screening, sourcing and assessment to ultimately help recruiters find talent with ease in this new era of working.

As companies are developing plans for more work from home options beyond the pandemic, talent acquisition leaders and recruiting staff need to adapt to the new era of working.

If you'd like to see how Retorio can help recruiters streamline their recruitment process to hire faster and better, click the button below to analyse yourself. 

Analyse Yourself - Try for Free!

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Written by Briah

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