How Blockchain-Fueled Credentialing Could Change HR Background Image

How Blockchain-Fueled Credentialing Could Change HR

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Published Tue October 22, 2019, 10:00 AM

All employers want to be sure they get the applicants they see on résumés. The process of checking a candidate’s full credentials is tedious and time-consuming, however, and many hiring managers don’t have the time to screen every CV they see.

According to HireRight’s 2017 Employment Screening Benchmark Report, nearly half of HR professionals admitted to not verifying credentials. When you consider that 85% of the employers surveyed found inaccuracies and falsehoods in résumés that year, it becomes hard to argue that credentialing doesn't need an upgrade — that’s where blockchain comes in.

Though blockchain isn't widely used in the HR sector, it has the potential to revolutionize hiring practices. Blockchain is capable of storing validated education credentials, work histories, and professional certifications. With access to this prevalidated information, HR departments can more efficiently identify potential hires and root out any candidates attempting to misrepresent themselves.

The Old Way Is Now the Hard Way

HR departments are still relatively old school, validating credentials through phone calls, emails, and other traditional means. Time constraints and business needs prevent the possibility of such full conventional background checks, especially when reviewing international candidates. This standard approach can — and does — produce the kind of bad hires that cost companies time, money, and morale.

Blockchain cuts into those time and money investments by acting as a repository for all credentialing information. It stores entire résumés, logging relevant qualifications and experience within each block. This method not only expedites the review process, but it also goes to great lengths to maintain the integrity of all pertinent candidate information.

First, it prohibits candidates from altering information after entering it to discourage falsification. The registered data is then automatically verified, and any information about the verifying party is hidden to reduce the potential for bias.

With these safeguards in place, employers, academic institutions, and HR departments can pool information onto one blockchain, simplifying the verification process and engaging higher-quality candidates. So why isn’t every HR department jumping at the chance to integrate blockchain into its recruitment strategy? Because even with all those security features in place, potential users still doubt their information will really be safe.

On the development side of the data question, new blockchain projects do incorporate full encryption and zero-knowledge features to ensure privacy and security — but that comes into question when more users enter the pool. More users translate to slower transaction speeds and higher fees, so scalability must be addressed to fully adopt technology across platforms.

Bring Blockchain Into Your HR Process

Adopting blockchain into your recruitment and hiring practices offers remarkable benefits, but it is a big undertaking that requires a look before you leap. Absorbing the shock of change will be easier when you incorporate these strategies into the integration process:

1. Determine if blockchain is the best option.

Depending on your situation, authenticating candidates the old-fashioned way might provide more desirable results. This determination is a critical step to take beforehand.

If blockchain recruitment isn’t right for your organization, implementing it anyway will waste time and money while debasing the developing HR blockchain network. Analyze the effectiveness of your standard credentialing process to see whether it even needs an overhaul. If so, look into how blockchain can optimize the credentialing process so only truly qualified candidates come across your table.

2. Verify the data.

On its own, blockchain is believed to be hack-proof due to multiple layers of security and encryption. Because the Trusted Global Network for HR Data requires an invitation for membership to join the developing HR blockchain network, the likelihood of fake accounts and misinformation shrinks to almost nil.

Review and double-check that all the information housed in the blockchain is correct and uncompromised. Put protocols in place to protect information to build trust in the new approach and the candidates it will attract.

3. Simplify the user experience.

People project personalities into user interfaces and react emotionally, even when that wasn’t the designer’s intention. As important as an easily navigable interface is, providing a friendly user experience goes even further toward encouraging the adoption of new platforms.

Poll the recruiters who will use the solution most for advice on how to streamline the technology. Use these insights to create a clean, uncomplicated solution that solves more problems than it causes.

The process of blockchain integration in HR won't be without challenges. But once you've successfully navigated beyond the transitional phase, the net positive effects on your HR department's workflow will be evident.

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