Blockchain technology – the next big thing for recruitment

Blockchain technology – the next big thing for recruitment

Blockchain is being used more and more for various recruitment processes, such as verifying applicants’ references and qualifications.
  • How can blockchain be of use in recruitment?
  • Blockchain platforms in action

Obtaining references can be extremely useful for recruiters  – references can verify that a candidate has experience in their field and is trusted by other employers, both of which indicate suitability for a role. However, references and qualifications can unfortunately be faked, and a survey by CareerBuilder found that three-quarters of hiring managers have found lies in CVs. The same goes for qualifications – it can often be tricky and time-consuming to obtain concrete evidence of someone’s qualifications. This has resulted in recruiters turning away from references and qualifications as go-to resources and instead attempting to determine applicants’ suitability based only on their CVs, social media profiles, and other (potentially unreliable) data provided solely by the applicant themselves. Unfortunately, this can lead to less well-informed hiring decisions. However, recruiters can still benefit from using references and qualifications by implementing blockchain technology to verify their accuracy.

How can blockchain be of use in recruitment?

Distributed ledger technology (or DLT) – more commonly known as ‘blockchain’ – allows for decentralised data registers maintained across a network of ‘nodes’. One advantage of blockchain is that the data stored cannot be altered without the approval of every user involved in maintaining the network. This makes it far more difficult for people to fraudulently edit data – such as for applicants to add fake references or qualifications or fraudulently alter existing ones. Blockchain-based platforms can be a secure, reliable way of storing and verifying data on qualifications and references. What’s more, blockchain-based platforms often require the consent of the candidate in order for recruiters to access their data. This makes it easier and more straightforward for recruiters to abide by privacy principles (or even regulations).

With blockchain, recruiters can check and verify data such as an applicant’s academic history, criminal record (or lack of), records of previous employment, driver’s licence, and any other relevant certifications. This can prove whether or not a candidate is sufficiently qualified for a role, as well as verifying their honesty. The fact that all of this data can be stored in one place, as well as being immutable, can also reduce time spent carrying out these checks.

Blockchain platforms in action

One example of such a blockchain platform is Zinc – an “automated referencing, feedback, and assessment tool” that “allows recruiters to collect screening information with a single click”. This platform can store applicants’ entire working histories, as well as the results of skills assessments and other tests. These results can be accessed by as many (or few) recruiters as the candidate allows, meaning that the same data can be used for multiple applications. This saves time for both applicants and recruiters, as new assessments for each application are not always needed. Another blockchain-based tool, Appii, enablessimilar pre-employment checks that speed up recruitment processes. It uses “biometric  identification and verification” to keep data secure, yet accessible to those with authorisation to access it.

Closing thoughts

Using blockchain for storage and verification of data can significantly increase both the accuracy and speed of screening processes. It seems highly likely that, in the not-too-distant future, using blockchain in this way will become standard practice in recruitment processes. This could empower (and increase trust between) both recruiters and applicants, improve the quality of hires, and save significant amounts of money.

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