Virtual reality (VR) is an innovative technology, so it stands to reason it could positively change the recruitment process. If the HR team knows how to implement it, they could vastly improve their current methods.
How HR Teams Can Use VR in Recruiting
The HR team can innovate their recruiting process with VR in many ways.
1. Job Gamification
New Zealand’s unemployment rate was 3.6% in the second quarter of 2023, a relatively low figure historically. With such a tight hiring market, candidate sourcing and attraction become more critical. Fortunately, HR professionals can turn to VR gamification to attract young or tech-savvy individuals.
This method uses typical gaming elements — level completion or point scoring — in a business-oriented activity. Turning a specific job function or position into a fun, interactive experience could substantially increase the amount of interest companies receive. They can use the technology at career fairs or publish environments in video game stores to accomplish this.
2. Virtual Tours
The HR team can use VR to take potential hires on a virtual workplace tour. It gives people a realistic, immersive look into the company’s culture and operations. While these sessions can be guided, it’s also possible to save time with prebuilt environments.
What’s more, a virtual tour substantially enhances accessibility. For example, real-time captions can help people with auditory disabilities or language barriers fully participate. Because of this feature, the HR team can attract more diverse applicants and select from a much larger talent pool.
This innovative approach is practical for organizations looking for many candidates. After all, global recruitment efforts have steadily increased over the years. Experts predict hiring attempts will increase by up to 76% in some countries.
3. Job Demonstrations
Many HR professionals find job posting creation challenging. After all, summing up a position in a few bullet points is no simple task. Fortunately, they can use VR to demonstrate functions from an employee’s point of view.
Potential applicants will appreciate a simulated in-person glimpse into the position, whether through a 360-degree video or an interactive experience. As a bonus, it helps the HR team identify quality candidates much faster. After all, those who continue with the recruitment process after the demonstration are likely more qualified.
4. Data Collection
VR-generated information can enhance the recruitment process. In most cases, headsets collect eye-tracking, behavioural and voice data while the user is in the virtual environment. The HR team can compare applicants' metrics with their on-the-job performance to gain insight into potential hiring methods.
5. Personalized Interviews
In some industries, people reject nearly 20% of job offers on average. Their reasoning ranges from salary expectations to company culture, but personalization is a sure way to increase the chances of acceptance. They’re more likely to feel an obligation or connection to an organization they feel tied to.
A three-dimensional meeting in a custom digital environment is much more memorable than a phone call or email. Since most remote candidates can’t interview in person, VR is an excellent alternative for HR professionals to establish personal connections. Even if someone can make it in person, a virtual meeting reduces their travel expenses.
6. Job Shadowing
It can be challenging for HR professionals to hire talent in industries with highly specialized positions. In response, they should implement a VR job shadowing process to quickly identify qualified candidates.
Potential hires could follow along with an interactive simulation, a prerecorded workday or a guided demonstration of job functions. This process removes geographical barriers and makes identifying who has the necessary skills to succeed easier.
7. Skills Tests
In New Zealand, the cost of recruitment totals around $23,860 per candidate. The amount has doubled since 2012 due to higher salary expectations and rising training expenses. Fortunately, VR gives HR teams a unique way to test an applicant’s potential early in the hiring process.
While traditional skills tests involve question-and-answer interviews or written questionnaires, VR relies on simulations. It allows HR professionals to realistically reproduce job functions. They’ll save time and money as a result since a hands-on trial demonstrates a candidate’s skills accurately.
Tips for VR Implementation
HR professionals must cover these key considerations before implementing VR in recruiting.
1. Consider Data Policies
Privacy, security and compliance are paramount if VR headsets collect user data. The HR team should have participants sign consent forms to protect their organization from unintentional legal consequences. Additionally, they should work closely with the IT department to ensure storage locations remain secure.
2. Collaborate With Vendors
Many vendors exist to create virtual environments or supply headsets. Experts project the VR market will reach nearly $294 billion by 2024, a tenfold increase from 2021. If the HR team isn’t knowledgeable in the technology, they should consider hiring a third party to make implementation more seamless.
3. Train HR Teams on VR
In most cases, VR headsets and controllers are user-friendly and require virtually no training. However, HR professionals should still learn to use the devices to appear competent. Additionally, they should understand how to troubleshoot basic technical issues if something goes wrong while interacting with potential hires.
4. Identify Technical Limitations
The HR team must understand the technical limitations of VR before implementing it. For example, they can only conduct virtual interviews with candidates who own a headset. Further, they can only have virtual tours or prebuilt meeting rooms if they design them in advance.
Whether they’re attracting talent at a career fair or publishing a prebuilt virtual tour, they must consider things like power sources, internet connections and headset availability. These factors may limit their feasible VR applications.
5. Consider Use Cases
VR skill assessment and development come with minimal expenses, even with repeated use. However, that doesn’t mean full-scale implementation is the best choice. HR teams must consider which positions would benefit most from the technology before progressing. At the very least, starting small allows them to fix pain points before full adoption.
6. Establish a Baseline
HR professionals should gather operational and success metrics before adopting VR technology for recruiting. They’ll need a baseline for comparison. They can only reliably address gaps and potential pain points if they have clear, data-driven insight into how the process functioned pre-implementation.
The Power of a VR-Driven Recruiting Process
Integrating VR into recruiting widens the talent pool and improves efficiency. HR professionals who implement it carefully and factor in the considerations will likely see vast improvements to their traditional process.