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Sunil Kumar, CEO of The DataFlow Group, discusses with Trade Arabia about why employers should take advantage of available technology including AI automation and Intelligent Automation within the PSV (Primary Source Verification) and background screening processes. By doing so, we can collectively help create safer communities for people to live and work in and help connect employers with global talent.
According to Cooper Fitch, the first quarter of 2022 saw a 7.7 per cent increase in job creation and employment opportunities in the GCC. The public, legal, banking, advisory, real estate, cyber security, and cloud sectors have experienced the highest levels of new employment, as companies across the gulf engage in strategies to expand their workforce in support of the GCC’s economic growth plans, including Saudi Vision 2030 and the UAE’s economic and strategic plans. The correct processes must be in place to ensure the most suitable candidates are selected for the increased job opportunities across the region. Technology in the hiring and verification of potential candidates has proved essential in supporting the employment process, with Primary Source Verification (PSV), Artificial Intelligence (AI) automation, chatbots, Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS), and blockchain being utilised in unison to aid employers and recruiters.
The UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar and Oman are at the forefront of countries using specific technologies to streamline and improve their employment and recruitment processes. PSV is widely used to help employers and recruiters in the employment process by verifying the accuracy and credibility of essential documents, such as academic degrees, employment certificates, work permits, passports, and practice licenses, through a recognised global network of issuing authorities and licensing bodies. This proven advanced screening method guarantees that professionals in these communities have valid academic, professional and legal credentials essential for employment opportunities in growing and critical sectors. All necessary documents are uploaded to a portal or shared with a PSV provider, and any erroneous material is identified, enabling employers to request further information from candidates if required or halt their application altogether.
To save time and the back-and-forth while verifying and identifying candidates, AI automation, or Intelligent Automation, is fast becoming a staple technology in the employment process. Certain AI technologies use predictive analytics that can analyse data provided by applicants to assess the likelihood of success in a particular role. Factors such as experience, expertise and education are evaluated, and Intelligent Automation removes any human bias that may influence the recruitment processes, enabling data-driven hiring decisions instead of emotive enrollments in companies.
Through technology, candidates are now often able to engage in conversation with chatbots, which can instantly answer questions, further guide the verification process of documents, and provide multiple options to complete tasks in the application process. Chatbots eliminate the need for people at certain stages of the employment process, providing cost and time savings after the initial set up.
The initial application and provision of personal details is the first stage of most recruitment processes, and software, such as ATS, further assists recruiters in managing the hiring process. ATS allows for the information candidates provide to be stored and searchable, saving the time it can take to identify suitable applicants and ensuring the process is streamlined, which is essential when one job listing can result in thousands of applications.
Privacy is a hot topic for employers and job applicants. Instances of cyber fraud and data breaches have been widely publicised, and the fallout from a lapse in security can include financial and operational repercussions, as well as a decrease in trust in the brand.
Blockchain technology presents a solution to these evolving security challenges. Based on principles of decentralisation, consensus and cryptography, blockchains, or distributed ledger technologies, have inherent security qualities, ensuring each transaction is true and correct and data cannot be tampered with once entered. For applicants, blockchain technology ensures their data will be private and protected. For employers and recruiters, the risk of data breaches is minimised. This creates trust across the recruitment and hiring process.
Companies and organisations are using these technologies to verify candidates effectively and efficiently for employment in growing sectors across the GCC. The DataFlow Group, for example, utilises such technologies and works alongside global governments, regulators, and public and private organisations to mitigate the potential risks of fraudulent employment applications, to create safer communities for people to live and work in and place the most suitable candidates in available employment opportunities. Through a robust PSV process utilising AI and blockchain, the DataFlow Group has verified over 4 million documents submitted across 2.5 million applications, empowered by technology to help employers find and onboard top talent from around the world.
Employment rates will continue to increase in line with economic growth strategies in each of the GCC countries, as will the need for technology to streamline these processes. The enablement of candidates to upload required credentials and documents on a trusted platform that makes use of accuracy-enhancing, efficient, and cost-saving methods of verification is crucial for the future of employment applications and processes in our region, for companies, employers and recruiters.