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GM Leader Shares Semantic Search Secrets to Up Your Talent Sourcing Game

February 28th, 2017 Comments off
GM Exec Shares Semantic Search Secrets to Up Your Talent Sourcing Game

A critical part of a winning recruitment strategy is being able to proactively source the right candidates at the right time. Do you or your team use semantic search or resume parsing techniques today as part of your talent sourcing efforts, or are you planning to in the near future? What should you know about and expect from semantic search efforts?

Get semantic search secrets from a pro. We asked Will Maurer, global sourcing manager at General Motors, for his insights.

CB: What is your perception of semantic search within recruiting today?

WM: I have observed a major increase in the implementation of semantic search technology within our industry. Of course it was initially greeted with a number of questions and a certain level of skepticism. As I grew to understand the methodology behind semantic search it really started to make sense.

For years, recruiting and sourcing professionals have relied on complex Boolean searches in order to extract information from databases and the open web. It only makes sense that at some point technological advancement would intervene and make this process simpler for the user.

While I think a lot of folks still have questions around the methodology, there is little doubt that semantic search can be a big time saver. This becomes increasingly important in a corporate recruiting function, where people are balancing a number of responsibilities and may not have the time to generate a number of complex search strings.

CB: Where do you see semantic search impacting recruitment in the future?

WM: I see semantic search ultimately being a large time saver as well as a useful tool for those folks who may not be well versed in traditional search syntax.

Search strings, as we traditionally know them, can be cumbersome to someone breaking into the industry and anyone who has limited knowledge of the various facets of the skill set that they are trying to recruit for.

In this way, I see semantic search as a way to alleviate issues and ultimately get talent acquisition professionals to the types of the candidates that they’re looking for faster.

CB: How do you see semantic search and Boolean interacting?

WM: The interaction between semantic search and Boolean is an interesting topic to me, and it’s [a subject] I’ve heard a number of people take different stances on.

For me, personally, there is room for both in a proper sourcing strategy.

The fact that semantic search can identify a large number of the relevant keywords surrounding a concept or notion simplifies the process for a lot of people. Some would argue that you no longer have to do exhaustive research identifying alternate keywords and all of the different ways potential candidates can express similar ideas on their resume. While that can be valuable, I think there is always a place for Boolean in a precise and “deep dive” search.

I appreciate the fact that semantic search can help formulate searches by making certain assumptions for me, but I also believe that it’s not safe to assume. At times variations on keywords or concepts that are brought in by semantic search are not actually what I’m looking for. With that said, I do believe that as semantic search continues to evolve, the ability to manipulate the search and truly hone in will increase and may eliminate the need for traditional Boolean.

Simplify your resume search and find candidates faster with CareerBuilder Search.

How Semantic Search is Revolutionizing Recruitment

August 11th, 2015 Comments off
Semantic search

When employers begin the process of filling an open position, they have a powerful tool at their disposal – their internal databases. Yet, only a small percentage of recruiters actually utilize their databases as a first step before advertising the job opening. In fact, recruiters are often forced to use them.

Why? One reason is because they have multiple databases, and instead of using up precious time to sift through them all to find relevant candidates, they’ll just move on to the next source.

Another reason – and often the one deemed the biggest hurdle – is because the search intelligence of their databases isn’t strong, causing them to miss candidates that would potentially be a great fit for the open position. There’s frequently a difference between how a recruiter phrases a job description and how a candidate phrases their skills on their resume, and the average search function isn’t “smart” enough to bridge the gap.

Recognizing this challenge, we set out to find a way to solve this problem and get recruiters to use their most underutilized recruitment asset – their internal database. That is why CareerBuilder acquired a majority stake in Textkernel, a software company that provides recruitment technology to recruiters, employers and software vendors. At the core of this technology is semantic search, which pieces together the intent and contextual meaning of words, seeing beyond what is typed to ensure that qualified candidates don’t slip through the technology cracks.

Why context matters

When a recruiter goes to write a job description for an open position, they might save time by using an existing job description. Yet, what recruiters should be doing is looking at the resumes of candidates they are targeting to see what keywords they’re using to help them write a description that more accurately captures what those candidates are seeking.

The candidate, on the other hand, may take a similar approach when writing their resume – referencing an existing resume instead of using the job description as a guideline.

When the recruiter goes to search their database, by phrasing their search a certain way, they could be missing applicants who chose different words to describe the same qualifications. That is why understanding the context behind words and phrases is so important.

Textkernel’s innovative semantic search factors in language patterns to combine the best of the human and the machine, bridging the gap between the recruiter’s and the candidate’s intent and making it easier for recruiters to find the best talent.

Removing common recruitment hurdles

Often, recruiters can get so bogged down in the process of identifying and qualifying candidates, that they spend more time with the technology than they do with the actual candidates. With sophisticated semantic search that understands what an applicant is conveying, recruiters will have a larger pool of relevant, qualified talent from which to choose. This allows them to spend more one-on-one time with candidates and less time weeding out mismatches.

Equally important is how easily this feature can integrate with the rest of the recruitment process. HR professionals often use a slew of disparate HR solutions that don’t work well together, which ends up being more of a headache than a help. Textkernel’s HR modules are customizable and can be seamlessly integrated as building blocks into any process, platform or HR system. Combined with Textkernel’s candidate routing workflow, it can convert any resume or social media profile into a fully searchable database record – in any system.

The next frontier of search

When it comes to the hiring process, recruiters and candidates ultimately want the same thing – to make a meaningful connection, one that results in the filling of an open position. With refined semantic search from Textkernel that ensures everyone is speaking the same language on the backend, CareerBuilder is able to facilitate faster, easier and more successful connections between employers and job seekers.