“For the times, they are a-changin’,” sang Bob Dylan in 1964, sending a timeless reminder that no matter what, nothing ever stays the same for very long. And with the introduction of data analytics into talent acquisition strategies, Dylan’s message once again echoes true.

But this isn’t as easy change to endure. Talent analytics in the hiring process is still new, and therefore still highly questioned by many end users – even if data is being championed for the importance it brings to the hiring process. And while many recognize the positive impact data analytics has on talent acquisition by saying “I understand how data is right for hiring…” they finish that thought by proverbially shooting themselves in the foot “…but I don’t think it’s right for me because I’m not sure if I can trust it with my hiring.”

2 Reasons Why Trust Will Cost You Talent Acquisition Victories

data analytics, talent analytics, hiring process, gut instinct, intuition, talent acquisition, quality of hireTrust is hard to earn, easily lost, and even more easily misplaced. The introduction of talent analytics into the hiring process has created a lot of skepticism, warranted or not, among those it would affect the most – the people who have to make the hiring decision. “But what if it gets it’s wrong?” they might ask themselves when pouring over numbers. And then, should they use the data to make a hiring decision and that decision doesn’t work out, the trust is gone in an instant.

But even worse than either of these scenarios is when trust is misplaced. And when going up against talent analytics, there are two critical areas that trust is misplaced with:

  1. Trusting Intuition Too Much: Trusting your gut on certain things can be a great way to make a decision with a positive outcome in your life, but hiring choices is not one of these areas. Using your gut solely to drive hiring decisions has many negative outcomes, starting right from the beginning of the hiring process when an initial opinion is formed, to later on in the hiring process when the use of things like rumors rather than evidence is weighted into the choice of someone’s credibility. Unfortunately, when comparing themselves against a set of data, many people will feel that they know better or have more insight than a program designed to make those insights on a much deeper level and run into hiring issues because they’re not using the very important and progressive tools readily available to them. Don’t get this wrong, your hiring intuition can be a very good thing to use when making a decision, but it should absolutely not be the only thing you use to make that choice.
  2. Not Trusting Data Enough: Although this sounds similar to the point above, its difference causes a crucial error in the decision making for talent acquisition. In this instance, rather than preferring to trust their intuition, the hiring manager may look at a set of information from the data and say “well I agree with all of these points expect for this. I don’t know if I trust this.” The problem here is that it automatically makes the hiring process suffer because you’re only trusting the results you want to see. It’s the equivalent of selective hearing – you’re no longer looking at the whole picture of the candidate, just the parts you want to use to help support your hiring decision. This is dangerous: not only does it lead to bad hiring, it’s a habit forming practice that discredits the very tools you have in place to eliminate these potential errors from happening.

Both of these misplaced trust issues interfere with the entire reason you’re using data analytics to begin with – to make smarter hiring decisions. In one you’re trusting your intuition too much, in the other you’re being too selective about what you’re trusting. Both instances require you to take a look at your hiring process, evaluate what you’re doing, and start placing your trust in the right places – even if that means it’s a change from where you have been trusting your choices before.