Significance of Technology in New-Age Recruitment: A Candidate Experience

In 2010, StepStone Solutions in Singapore commissioned SHRI – the only not-for-profit professional HR body in Singapore to survey 50 companies in Singapore/Malaysia to understand their career website and application process – using 3 mystery candidates to apply for a job.

To examine:

  • The career web site quality and online recruitment efforts (eg social media) of top employers in Singapore
  • The application process of top employers in Singapore and from jobseeker’s perspective

Recruitment Challenges

External Factors:

  • Relatively stable economic growth
  • Lack of qualified talent
  • Salary inflation

Internal Talent Issues:

  • Obtaining headcount approval
  • Leadership gaps
  • Increased turnover & budget constraints
  • Staff retention strategies


Internal issues directly impact recruitment considerations

  • Talent mobility/volatility increases
  • Retention becomes more difficult
  •  Recruitment demands further increase
  •  More competition for available talents
  • Recruitment costs soar

Results: Finding, nurturing & developing new talent will be instrumental to sustain a competitive advantage in the near future!

Key Findings


•  From the Universum Global student survey 2010, we learn that the number one preferred source of career related information is the company career website. This highlights the importance of using the career website as an effective tool in candidates’ communication and recruitment

•   The relative strengths of the reviewed companies’ career websites are Content (71%) and Navigation (71%). The jobseekers are pointing out the design and the functionality of the career websites are marginally less appealing at 69%.

•  The design is described as giving the sites a professional look. Many career sites also offer a good user interface and a personal touch of the company (when employee testimonials and corporate videos are used along with graphical representation of the recruitment processes and career development opportunities)

• Content has a relative strength among the reviewed websites (in 79% of the cases, there was sufficient information on the role) but despite this, many jobseekers find that the career tab  is not on the main page and most (69%) of the career sites do not have the job-search function

• Functionality is one of the relatively weak with respect to lengthy applications and sending cv using emails. Typically, candidates claim they find the basic information about jobs and company, but on the other hand, many are also missing the in-depth information on different stages of recruitment processes (42%) and possible career development opportunities (32% )

•  When visiting a career website, the jobseekers want in-depth career related as well as information about the work culture. The reviewed companies are largely failing to deliver this information with only 21% of the companies offering employee testimonials and only 42% using company videos as a communication channel. This, of course, constitutes a large area of improvement along with signing up for a career news letters and recruitment news.

•  The best performing career websites are normally found among large local and public sector companies. Regional / smaller / local companies are typically found on the second half of the career website rankings

•  However, many of the MNCs are seen as the most attractive companies to work for, according to Universum’s Global student survey in 2010 where 16 out of the top 20 companies have global presence (with only local companies being SIA, MAS, Tamasek Holdings and STB)

• Most of the reviewed companies are immediately sending confirmation letters out in response to speculative applications (1 working day on average) but the quality is not always great (37%). Many companies are using standardised auto replies or pop-ups

• None of the speculative application sent (up to 3 different CVs to each company) resulted in a personalized response. Only 19% of the reviewed websites did provide screening questions so that candidates could know whether specific requirements were met. If this rate would increase, the match between applications and open positions would probably also be better


If you would like to know more about this survey, and to also order a copy of the survey please contact Sathish on 64380012 or email to

Click here for the order form >>>