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People Management | Are CVs on the way out? Research finds majority of recruiters prefer skills assessments to unearth talent

Cv Article Press Release

Isabel Jackson Press Releases

​This article originally appeared on People Management and is available here.

Traditional hiring methods ‘prone to bias’ and failing to do candidates justice, experts point out.

Seven in 10 (72 per cent) hiring professionals are using skills assessments to evaluate a candidate’s potential, HireVue’s new report has revealed.

The survey of 900 hiring professionals and 2,319 candidates in the UK explored the current trends in hiring practices.

It also found that nearly two thirds (63 per cent) of organisations have adopted skills-based methods of recruitment to achieve their equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) goals.

In addition, a third (34 per cent) of recruiters said they prioritised a candidate’s potential over their established experience.

Skills-based hiring is a “positive step in the right direction for social mobility”, David Morel, CEO and founder of Tiger Recruitment, told People Management.

“As companies and business leaders are increasingly prioritising EDI, it stands to reason that this would impact talent acquisition strategies,” he said, adding that a shift towards “equitable hiring” would lead to teams becoming more innovative, productive and happier.

“Skills-based hiring emphasises merit and potential, reducing biases associated with traditional CV screening, which displays name, education and job titles,” Morel continued.

Jo Benelisha, director of Strictly Recruitment, toldPeople Management: “With the pace of technological advancement and changing job requirements, traditional hiring methods may no longer be sufficient for identifying and attracting the right talent.”

She also highlighted that traditional CVs can be “subjective and prone to bias”, as they are reliant on self-reported information. 

Benelisha argued that skills assessments “provide concrete evidence of a candidate’s abilities and qualifications”, as well as focusing on “objective criteria”, enabling more inclusive hiring outcomes.

The research found candidates also favoured skills-based approaches to recruiting, as 83 per cent said they were comfortable with completing skills assessments, while 71 per cent felt they are aware of their transferable skills.

Mandy Watson, managing director of Ambitions Personnel, said: “While you might expect someone just starting their career journey not to have a substantial CV, sometimes even the most senior or accomplished candidates have a CV that doesn’t do them justice.”

She said employers should be willing to hire those who may not be “a typical match on paper based on a traditional approach using rigid job descriptions and person specifications that require specific experience in a particular field”. 

This prioritisation of candidates’ skills and potential has taken place amid tightened spending – the research found nearly half of UK businesses had cut their hiring budgets over the past 12 months.

Despite this, 30 per cent of hiring professionals said they had increased their tech budgets, perhaps signalling a shift to new methods of recruiting.

Talent shortages

HireVue’s report also revealed that, while facing skills gaps in the past year, nearly half (46 per cent) of hiring professionals have actively sought to attract and retain mature workers, while 44 per cent of businesses surveyed have been focused on recruiting internally.

Nick Allwood, regional director at Macmillan Davies, said skills shortages have had an impact on how companies hire. “In response to the desperate talent shortages we all encountered in 2021 and 2022, we have seen many businesses developing their own employees to give them the skills they need to progress,” he said.

“As a result of this, companies will now feel more confident to forego some of the traditional methods of recruitment, like reliance on a CV, as they have a clearer picture of what skills are required in their organisation.”

Allwood also advised employers to focus on transferable skills, saying: “If what you want right now doesn’t exist, then you need to think about what skillsets you can work with and develop.”