Giraffe Partners with IFC and Leading Tech Firms to Boost Employment Opportunities for Women

 

San Francisco, Johannesburg, October 4, 2018

 

Airbnb, Google, LinkedIn and Giraffe among companies joining IFC-led Digital2Equal Initiative

 

Giraffe along with 16 other technology companies operating across the online marketplace, including Airbnb, Google, and LinkedIn, have come together to boost opportunities for women in emerging markets under an initiative led by IFC, a sister organization of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group.

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New Laws on the Use of Labour Brokers: Everything Recruiters and HR Professionals Need to Know

Johannesburg, 30 August 2018

 

Giraffe in association with Ganasen Botha Inc- labour law experts

 

South African labour laws have recently changed- specifically regarding the use of labour brokers. In this article we provide HR managers and recruiters with everything they need to know about the new law and its implications.

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67 Placements for Mandela Day

 

JOHANNESBURG, 18 JULY 2018

 

Nelson Mandela fought for social justice for 67 years. Today we celebrate Madiba’s legacy and his ideals through the belief that each individual has the power to transform the world and effect positive change. Many organisations volunteer 67 minutes of their time, this year we want to contribute by providing 67 people with employment opportunities.

 

Giraffe’s mission is to reduce unemployment in South Africa. Creating more opportunities for more jobseekers is our reason for being. Over the past six months we have invited over 50,000 people for interviews and placed thousands of jobseekers in full-time employment.

 

Even though matching jobseekers with the right jobs is our day-to-day, we want to up our game for Mandela Day. We have set up interviews across the country and aim to place 67 jobseekers in full-time positions by Friday (we hope a lot more!).

 

In keeping with Nelson Mandela’s beliefs that every person should have access to opportunities, we will continue well beyond Mandela Day to provide more South Africans with access to jobs and in so doing provide them with the opportunity for a better life.

 

We believe that by providing employment opportunities we can have a real positive impact on our country. Today we start with 67, but we won’t stop there! We challenge you to keep Madiba’s legacy alive today and always – what are you doing to make a difference this Mandela Day?

 

About Giraffe

 

Giraffe is a fully-automated digital recruitment solution that enables businesses to hire high volumes of medium-skilled workers faster and more affordably than any other recruitment method. Because Giraffe has automated the entire recruitment process – from sourcing to screening to contacting to interview-scheduling, we can provide high volumes of quality candidates in as little as 48 hours. For more information, visit www.giraffe.co.za.

 

How to write a good job spec for effective high-volume recruitment

 

Getting quality candidates for high-volume roles such as call centre agents, field sales agents and retail staff can be a challenge. Most jobseekers are desperate and will apply for every job they can, resulting in clogged inboxes and excessive CVs for recruiters to screen. Poorly written job specs can cause further unnecessary stress and time wastage for recruiters because they attract irrelevant applications from the wrong candidates.

 

Writing a good job spec is an art and can save recruiters time when it comes to screening applicants. Clear and compelling job specs are particularly important for high-volume roles due to the nature of the recruitment process for these roles. High-volume roles such as call centre agents and sales agents generally have broad requirements that encourage many chancers to apply.

 

At Giraffe we have seen it all in terms of job specs- both good and bad- and we have identified clear principles that help to attract the best applicants.

 

Here is our step-by-step guide to writing a good job spec:

 

1. Distinguish between what is essential and what is advantageous

Differentiating between must-haves and nice-to-haves is key to drafting a job spec. Recruiters have an idea of their ideal candidate but often this picture involves a laundry list of many nice-to-haves over and above the minimum requirements. For example, in high-volume or entry-level roles, matric is often a minimum requirement but additional qualifications or experience are preferred. In the interests of clarity, it is best to distinguish what is advantageous from what is the minimum requirement. Clearly stating minimum requirements can reduce applications from irrelevant candidates.

 

2. Keep it brief and well structured

Keep it brief! Only include the most relevant information and avoid using jargon. Keep detail to what candidates need to know and avoid ambiguity. Use of headings and short points helps to structure the spec and highlight only the most necessary points. For example, a paragraph describing the role and including the necessary skills and experience as well as required qualifications will be less clear than breaking this information into a list of key points. Remember that there will be opportunity in the interview process to give applicants further detail; the job spec is to help candidates determine their own suitability.

 

3. Be realistic about what to expect

It is important to be realistic when determining requirements for a role. For example, a candidate applying for an entry-level role will most likely not have their own vehicle and so it would be unrealistic to state that as an essential requirement. Similarly, if the role pays a low basic salary, expecting applicants to have many years of experience would be an unrealistic expectation.

 

4. Empathise with your candidates

The job market in South Africa is nuanced and recruiters must have a good understanding of the day-to-day reality of the jobseeker- particularly when hiring for medium-skilled roles (those that pay between R3k and R15k per month). Recruiters should draft job specs that take jobseekers’ challenges into account.

 

For example, many South Africans rely solely on taxis for transport. Taxi schedules can impact feasible working hours for some candidates. Staff required to work shifts or long hours may not have access to public transport at these times. If the role can accommodate flexible hours to make the commute more convenient then it should be stated in the spec.

 

Transport issues can also impact an applicant’s decision to apply for a role. The job may not be located on a direct taxi route or it may be extremely expensive to get to the location using taxis. In such cases it may be important to include a travel allowance in the remuneration structure.

 

5. Attract the right candidates and discourage the wrong ones

Make the role sound attractive to apply for. Remember that high-volume roles are high volume for a reason and are often highly competitive with small variances and differentiation in criteria and remuneration. Roles in this space compete with each other aggressively so a job spec needs to encourage the best candidates to apply for the role instead of a similar role at another company. Aside from competing on salary, employers can offer performance bonuses, benefits, travel allowances and other non-monetary perks to differentiate.

 

The right candidates need to be compelled to apply but unsuitable candidates also need to be discouraged. Be transparent about any potential negative aspects of the role upfront- such as night shifts or weekend work. For example if the role involves night shifts then candidates with children may not apply because they know upfront that they will be unable to work at night, whereas a job involving night shifts may be ideal for a candidate who is studying part-time.

 

6. Don’t discriminate – inadvertently or deliberately

In some cases certain criteria can discriminate against candidates unfairly by listing requirements not directly linked to performing the job. For example, a job spec that asks for a candidate that is fluent in Afrikaans can exclude candidates purely based on the fact that Afrikaans isn’t their first language. Limit criteria to those absolutely necessary to perform the job to avoid unnecessary exclusion. Employment Equity (EE) roles are a case particularly relevant in South Africa where a company is looking for specific candidates and this should be stated upfront so that candidates that do not fall into that category do not apply. This frees candidates up to apply for roles relevant to them and saves recruiters from sorting through irrelevant applications.

 

Taking these principles into account, here is an example of a good job spec that can be used as a guide:


Writing good job specs can be a challenge but following these steps and putting in additional time and thought when drafting the spec can save recruiters a lot of time and hassle down the line. It is also important to remember that the purpose of a job spec is to attract the right people and potential candidates need to be seen as just that – people – with their own challenges and concerns. We hope that this guide helps you to compile great job specs that will bring in great talent. We’d love to hear what you think about this guide and if you have any other ideas or suggestions.

 

About Giraffe
Giraffe is reimagining the recruitment process by simplifying high-volume recruitment through technology. As innovators in recruitment we will continue to provide recruiters with tips and tools to make high-volume recruitment easy! If you want to be kept up to date with the latest insights and trends, subscribe to our mailing list below.

The Recruiter’s Guide to Artificial Intelligence: Don’t Get Left Behind!

 

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is all the rage these days. Everywhere you look, AI seems to be disrupting this industry or transforming that one. However, scratch beneath the surface and quite often all one finds is hot air- vaguely defined ideas, abstract concepts and unfounded hysteria about robots replacing jobs. So what exactly is AI? In this article, the second in a series on HR tech trends, we define what AI is and examine some existing uses in the recruitment space.

 

The broad definition of AI is a machine that has been trained to think like a human. The first AI programmes were given a set of rules- such as how to play chess- and then used those rules to guide their activity. As such their activity was limited to only playing chess. However, with the advent of the internet and the availability of massive amounts of data, new AI programmes are able to use this data to learn new things. This new type of AI is known as machine learning. The more data available, the better the machine can learn. For example, if you train a photo recognition AI with thousands of pictures of cats, it will be able to identify cats in any other picture.

 

So how can AI be applied in recruitment? Recruitment is one of the most important activities in any business. Yet for decades, it has remained full of manual, repetitive and time-consuming processes- such as candidate sourcing, screening, assessing and interview scheduling. Whilst job boards, LinkedIn and applicant tracking systems have made life somewhat easier, many manual processes still remain.

 

AI has the potential to support recruitment teams by enabling better candidate searching, matching, assessment and selection. AI can help automate the recruitment process, particularly for high-volume hiring, with a focus on finding suitable candidates, eliminating irrelevant applicants and accurately assessing their capabilities in order to improve the quality of hiring decisions.

 

Some recruitment tools such as job boards claim to be AI-powered but in reality are only making use of simple keyword matches. Some screening tools claim to have an AI component but actually just screen potential candidates by matching a job spec with certain requirements in their CVs or job profiles without applying any learning for future decisions.

 

Below we describe four instances where AI is actually being used to transform recruitment in specific areas of the hiring process- candidate sourcing, job matching, candidate assessment and removal of human bias.

 

  1. AI for Candidate Searching

The evolution of candidate matching tools is bringing the machine learning component of AI to the fore. AI programmes are now able to identify candidates that fit a job description not only from their CVs or applications to a particular job but from their publicly available data on the internet, such as Facebook and LinkedIn. This allows a recruiter to identify candidates that may not have even applied for the job but who would be a perfect fit for the role.

 

A recent entrant to the space is Eightfold.ai, founded by ex-Facebook and Google employees. Eightfold.ai combines employee data from companies with the publicly available profile data on the internet, and predicts which candidates are best for which roles. This form of ‘digital headhunting’ is assisting recruiters to find the right candidates for roles without even actively looking for them.

 

  1. AI for Job Matching

AI-powered search tools use data to learn what a good candidate looks like based on past hiring decisions. These tools can learn what experience, skills and qualifications are needed for success in specific roles and then apply this knowledge to automatically screen, grade, and shortlist the most relevant candidates – saving the recruiter the time and effort of going through this process manually.

 

Companies worth noting in this space include ZipRecruiter, a job marketplace which not only collects candidate data but analyses data from past searches and uses it to determine the suitability of future candidates for similar roles.

 

  1. AI for Candidate Assessment

Most organisations have some kind of assessment to determine candidate skill level and suitability. However most assessments have been fairly binary and simplistic in their ability to gauge candidate fit.

 

AI based gamification is transforming the way candidates are assessed and scored. For example, companies such as Knack.it have developed tools to assess candidates in quick and fun ways. Knack assessments ask candidates to play a series of games. Knack then determines skills and traits based on how the candidate plays the game. Moreover, once Knack is provided with data on how those candidates perform in the job, Knack is able to learn which specific skills and traits are required for success, and then screen candidates for those specific characteristics in the future.

 

This is a win-win – the candidate is more likely to complete and excel in an assessment that they find enjoyable and the recruiter is able to predict performance more accurately, thereby making better hiring decisions.

 

  1. AI to Remove Human Bias from Hiring Decisions

One of the arguments in favour of using AI in recruitment is to remove any personal bias of a recruiter, ensuring that the final decision is based purely on merit- instead of race, gender or age. Machine learning-based recruitment platforms such as Giraffe do indeed ignore gender and race, focusing exclusively on skills and qualifications. However on the flip side, if programmes are not taught to ignore gender and race, it is possible that they may develop bias.  For example, if a company has successfully hired software developers from a particular university that happen to be male, the system may learn that men from university X will be a better match for this particular role than women from university Y – inherently building in a level of bias based on previous hiring decisions.

 

So we can see that AI is starting to play a very real role in streamlining the recruitment process. However, even as firm advocates and developers of recruitment technology, we don’t believe that AI tools will ever be able to replace recruitment professionals entirely. While technology can be used to streamline and automate manual processes, it can only go so far when it comes to reading and understanding people, ascertaining cultural fit and determining attitude.

 

The future of recruitment lies not in replacing recruiters but in making them more efficient and equipping them with the tools to make better decisions, faster. We believe that, no matter how sophisticated AI recruitment gets, the old adage “people hire people” will remain true for the foreseeable future.

 

About Giraffe

Giraffe is reimagining the recruitment process by simplifying high-volume recruitment through technology. As a Silicon Valley backed company, we will continue to innovate in our own markets and keep a close eye on global HR tech trends and leaders. If you want to be kept up to date with the latest insights and trends, subscribe to our mailing list below!

 

GIRAFFE HR SUPERSTARS: Talent Acquisition Secrets From One Of The Best In The Business

Olebogeng Ramerafe, Talent Acquisition Specialist at Smollan, let Giraffe in on a few of her secrets for efficient high-volume recruitment and shared her thoughts on the future of HR and trends to watch.

 

Olebogeng Ramerafe – Talent Acquisition Specialist

“Recruitment chose me,” says Olebogeng Ramerafe, Talent Acquisition Specialist at Smollan. Fortunate that it did, given that Ole now specialises in acquiring top talent for an organisation with a complement of over 80 000 permanent staff and thousands more on fixed term contracts.

 

Ole started at Smollan two years ago as a Talent Acquisition Specialist focusing on field marketers and promoters. She has since more than doubled her portfolio with the company adopting a group-wide approach to talent acquisition. The four-person Talent Acquisition team now works across a number of reputable and sizeable brands spanning industries such as telecoms, consumer electronics and alcoholic beverages.

 

Although in a Talent Acquisition role, Ole is passionate about the strategic elements of recruitment, the importance of managing talent and helping people perform to the best of their ability. When asked why she chose talent acquisition and what makes it all worthwhile, her answer- without any hesitation- is helping people.

 

“Helping and interacting with people gets me up in the morning. I have the potential to change somebody’s life. I have the opportunity to give someone a job that will feed their family of five and improve their lives. This rewards me more than anything else.”

 

While extremely rewarding, working closely with people and playing such an important role in their lives and career paths can also be taxing – “You can never have an off day,” says Ole, “when people are relying on you, you always need to be on top of your game.” This is understandable, given the large volumes of candidates that a company like Smollan recruits on a constant basis.

 

Managing this high-volume recruitment cycle is an art in itself, one that Ole and her team have mastered by adopting various unique approaches and processes. One of the successful methods she has used to manage high-volume recruitment is to improve the quality of candidates coming for face-to-face interviews. She has done this by introducing an online pre-screening assessment that measures not only a candidate’s alignment to the job spec but also the overall likelihood of a fit with the relevant brand. Through this assessment and by being more specific in the screening process, overall candidate quality can be improved at scale. Ole also favours telephonic screening to streamline the high-volume recruitment process.

 

“Recruitment processes are always too long and telephonic screening is very useful but underused,” says Ole. It is important to optimise the use of time when interviewing and screening so many candidates on a regular basis. Respecting a candidate’s time is extremely important, they are often not able to attend many rounds of face-to-face interviews, often without decision-makers present, in order to be considered for a role. Good quality candidates are very hard to get these days – they know that they’re good and that they have choices.

 

Long and unnecessary hiring processes are not an option when client deadlines need to be met and every acquisition is urgent. “If the recruitment process itself is too long, many good quality candidates will pull out,” says Ole.

 

When asked about the future of Talent Acquisition and key trends in HR as a whole, Ole predicts that gamification will play a significant role. Gamification makes use of gaming to engage users while assessing their progress and encouraging desired behaviours or actions. Getting candidates to interact with simple tasks, delivered in a compelling and fun way, will improve the recruitment experience for candidates and allow for engagement beyond the face-to-face interviews or even online assessments.

 

Once an aspiring writer, Ole now spends her time outside of work reading and attending thought-leadership and networking events when she can. “I’m also passionate about mentoring and about the youth – grooming them and growing them. Many young people don’t understand the transition from tertiary education to the workplace and more needs to be done by passionate people to assist in this space”.

 

This is our first in a series of interviews with top HR professionals in SA. Do you want to be featured here, or would you like to nominate someone who should? Send us a mail at hello@giraffe.co.za

 

About Giraffe

Giraffe is a fully-automated digital recruitment solution that enables businesses to hire high volumes of medium-skilled workers faster and more affordably than any other recruitment method. Because Giraffe has automated the entire recruitment process – from sourcing to screening to contacting to interview-scheduling, we can provide high volumes of quality candidates in as little as 48 hours. For more information, visit www.giraffe.co.za.


 

 

Top tech trends that are transforming the global HR landscape

 

HR departments have often been accused of lagging behind in using new technology to streamline their processes or make their function more effective.

 

However, new advances in technology are giving rise to tools and applications that can add significant value not only to HR teams but also the employees whose welfare and interests that they manage.

 

This is the first in a series of articles about how technology is enabling HR teams to radically transform the way they operate, thereby enhancing the value HR can add to organisations as a whole.

 

When examining how technology is impacting HR, it’s useful to break down the HR lifecycle into its key components. This can be done in many ways but we like to break it down into three simple stages:

 

  • GET THE JOB- Recruitment and onboarding
  • DO THE JOB- Training, culture and productivity
  • GET REWARDED- recognition and performance management

 

New tech solutions are starting to permeate all three stages of the HR lifecycle. Below are the top 5 emerging trends that we have identified:

 

TREND #1: Increasing use of AI-powered candidate matching tools

The adoption of algorithm and AI-powered recruitment tools has increased steadily in the past couple of years. One of the most valuable AI applications in the HR space is the automation of the recruitment process. This helps recruiters and hiring managers to eliminate their biggest time wasters – screening candidate CVs and interviewing irrelevant candidates. Some job board statistics show that high-volume job postings can receive as many as 250 applications per position hired – up to one third of which are irrelevant.

 

New automated screening solutions use AI to learn what a good candidate looks like based on past hiring decisions as well as publicly available candidate data. Tools in this space can learn what experience, skills or qualifications are needed and then apply this knowledge to automatically screen, grade, and shortlist candidates – saving the many hours that it would take a person to conduct the process manually.

 

Companies worth noting in the AI recruitment space include ZipRecruiter, a job marketplace which analyses data gathered from past candidate searches and uses this to determine suitability for future job listings. A more recent entrant to the space is Eightfold.ai. Founded by ex-Facebook and Google employees, Eightfold.ai scours the internet for publicly available profile data and predicts which candidates are best for which roles.

 

TREND #2: Tech-enabled employee referrals as a recruitment channel

Several studies have shown that employees hired through referral tend to be a better fit and stay with the company longer than those that are recruited through job boards or recruitment agencies. Hiring the wrong staff results in wasted training budget, decreased productivity and higher attrition.

 

Using employee referral platforms and software to facilitate employee referrals can improve key hiring metrics such as time to hire, cost per hire, employee retention and staff turnover rate. If the company employs good people, the chances are that they know and can recommend more good people.

 

RolePoint and Jobvite are enabling organisations to leverage the networks of their employees for referrals. RolePoint enables organisations to automatically track employee referrals and offer referral bonuses. The system integrates machine learning through Google’s Cloud Job Discovery, allowing employees to search for the best jobs to refer to their circles. Similarly, Jobvite can help turn an organisation’s employees into a powerful internal recruitment tool. Jobvite makes use of employees’ social networks to extend recruitment reach and uses Jobvite’s Publisher feature to publish open positions on social media networks including LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter.

 

TREND #3: Replacing tedious generic corporate training with personalised online learning

Training staff is a huge cost to any company. Whilst most corporates use a combination of classroom and online training, it is often generic and ‘one size fits all,’ failing to cater for specific and personalised training needs. A key new trend is greater emphasis being placed on self-directed, personalised learning – finding the right content for your specific training needs.

 

The advent of massive open online training courses (MOOCs) and the analytics that come with them, are starting to dramatically change the way corporate training is delivered. In the same way that Amazon can learn what you like and recommend other products, new learning management systems (LMS) are adopting the tech pioneered by MOOCs and can analyse the courses you take and recommend other relevant courses to advance your skills.

 

Established players like Udemy and Coursera are moving into the corporate space, providing analytics for managers to track employee training progress and engagement. Go1, another eLearning platform, provides an interface for businesses to find, book, deliver and track all their training via a subscription model, a kind of Spotify for corporate training.

 

TREND #4: The rise of free/low cost HR management tools that aggregate health insurance

Many SMEs offer health insurance as an employee benefit. However the procurement and management of insurance has proved to be a pain point for many businesses. At the same time, most SMEs do not use HR management software, as this is often prohibitively expensive. Enter Zenefits– a free HR management software tool that also aggregates health insurance options. Zenefits took the HR world by storm- enabling SME HR teams to automate payroll and benefits management whilst attempting to disrupt the bloated and inefficient health insurance broker industry.

 

The service has proved so popular and grown so fast in the US that Zenefits has spawned a large number of similar companies all over the world such as SmartHR in Japan and Bayzat in the UAE. Given that the health insurance industry has very specific rules and regulations in each country, it is likely that the Zenefits model will spread in a hyperlocalised way, with many country and region specific players as opposed to a small number of global giants.

 

TREND #5: Crowdsourcing employee feedback to inform culture, recognition and performance management

Perhaps the most interesting trend of all is the use of tech to measure and manage culture and recognition.

 

Ask any CEO or HR director about culture and they’ll tell you it’s one of the most important things in an organisation. ‘Culture eats strategy for breakfast’ has been a popular maxim in business and HR circles. However, until now, many companies- especially corporates- have been bad at fostering, measuring and maintaining a strong culture and recognising performance.

 

In the past most companies would only conduct an annual employee performance review and opinion survey and try to incorporate the feedback in some rudimentary way. Such an exercise is cursory at best, and often fails to recognise the contributions of junior, less visible team members.

 

New culture and engagement tech platforms are enabling organisations to have a real-time, always-on view of the feelings and thoughts of their employees. This type of constant temperature check helps to create a culture of continuous improvement based on actual feedback, enabling organisations to react quickly to changing sentiment, reassure employees that their opinions are heard and recognise contributions accurately.

 

For example, Culture Amp– an Australian tech firm- offers an employee analytics tool that gathers data from employee engagement surveys and gauges employees’ emotional commitment to the company they work for. The analytics platform then enables management to visualise the results and identify areas that may be causing dissatisfaction.

 

Bonusly, a social recognition tool, enables employees to rate each other’s performance anonymously. Managers can then use this to identify star performers and reward them appropriately with discretionary bonuses or vouchers.

 

As we can see, new tech solutions are impacting all stages of the HR lifecycle. The trends outlined here are by no means exhaustive, but represent some of the key areas of HR tech adoption at the moment. No doubt new HR technologies will emerge in the next year or so, and we’ll be looking out for them.

 

About Giraffe

Giraffe is reimagining the recruitment process by simplifying high-volume recruitment through technology. As a Silicon Valley backed company, we will continue to innovate in our own markets and keep a close eye on global HR tech trends and leaders. If you want to be kept up to date with the latest insights and trends, subscribe to our mailing list below!

 

LISTEN: Giraffe discusses youth unemployment with YES and Harambee on Classic FM Business Panel

JOHANNESBURG, 21 MAY, 2018

 

Giraffe CEO, Anish Shivdasani, joined Tashmia Ismail (CEO of the Youth Employment Service) and Lebo Nke (Executive & Leader in Partnerships & Advocacy at Harambee) to discuss innovation in the recruitment space and how we can begin to solve problems surrounding youth unemployment in South Africa. Giraffe assists in solving unemployment by providing a high-volume recruitment solution that is free for all jobseekers and available on any cellphone – ideal for unemployed youth and entry level job seekers.