AI could boost hiring efficiency for Singaporean job-seekers but keep the human touch: Indeed

Embracing artificial intelligence may be the way forward in mitigating the jarring problems faced by Singaporean job seekers.

Singaporeans are facing perplexing challenges in their search for jobs and embracing artificial intelligence (AI) might be a step forward in alleviating their plight, a recent survey has shown.

The survey was conducted by job site Indeed and polled 2,000 Singaporeans last December to unveil the sentiments of Singaporean job-seekers when searching for employment.

The research revealed time-consuming processes, lack of relevance and unfair hiring practices to be the most prominent challenges Singaporean job-seekers have to deal with in their employment search.

Some 50% of job applicants said that their job searches were muddled by irrelevant opportunities, while 56% said recruitment processes are too long and inefficient.

Where relevance was called into question, 55% of respondents said job search processes lack personalisation with regards to their skills and past experience.

Almost half (46%) of job applicants felt they have encountered bias and discrimination when they apply for a new job.  Of respondents aged 45 and above, 50% have suffered age discrimination.

Furthermore, job-seekers are displeased with the perceived lack of transparency in the hiring process, despite signs of improvement in the Singapore labour market last year.

Although digitalisation and globalisation have granted employers access to more tools and channels to streamline their search for the best talent, they apparently have not translated to enhanced job-seekers’ experiences.

According to a statement, the findings echo a report by Singapore’s Ministry of Manpower which identified an ongoing job-skills mismatch that resulted from the digital transformation wave which rapidly swept across all industries.

However the same research revealed that the majority of Singaporean job seekers are eager to have AI-driven technologies make their job searches more efficient and effective.

They believe AI can help to focus recruitment efforts on matching candidates to skills and experience required for a role while keeping hiring biases to a minimum and saving time.

For instance, employers can make skills-led decisions on candidates by leveraging AI’s natural language processing capabilities to sieve through text-heavy resumes and pinpoint critical information.

Andrew McGlinchey, senior director at Indeed Asia Pacific, said: “Understanding the candidate experience is key to making today’s hiring process more effective.”

“AI has a special part to play in this process, by helping hirers filter through hundreds of resumes, minimising time spent on cumbersome recruitment processes and selecting candidates in a more objective manner.”

He noted the importance of human interaction in the overall hiring process, with traditional interviews still paramount for recruiters to instil trust and loyalty in their candidates from the start.

“After all, hiring is a two-way process that requires both job seekers and hirers to determine the right fit for both parties,” McGlinchey added.