Industry Insights

Big Data and Hiring

Andrew Buhrmann
January 15, 2017
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Job seekers and employers have access to almost any information they want these days. This raises a few important questions. Is more data truly useful? Does more information directly correlate to better jobs, better employees, and better matches? How will we measure the impact that big data has on hiring in the future?

The ease of access to information on any person or business is at an all-time high. The internet is a personal spy network allowing anyone to get the information they want on demand. This can be an incredibly useful thing, but becomes problematic when the volume of information far exceeds the volume that our brains can effectively digest and recall. Big data is a big problem for job seekers and hiring professionals with current solutions only making it worse.

Sites like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Glassdoor are giving us exactly what we crave; easy access to more information. This isn’t a bad thing, but what many professionals lack is a way to properly digest it all with a clear purpose. These sites and the numerous alternatives produce endless streams of information making it impossible to keep up and the final decision even more allusive. It’s the perpetual carrot in front of the horse.

Here are some specific examples of the sheer volumes data that professionals and employers have to deal with and some of the associated questions:

  • 380,000,000+ registered members –LinkedIn
  • Employers: How can I find the candidate I’m looking for in such a large pool?
  • Job seekers: How can I stand out in such a large candidate pool?
  • “8 million company reviews” — Glassdoor
  • Employers: How can I control the information being posted about my company?
  • Job Seekers: How can I evaluate 8 million companies to choose where I might fit?
  • “836,951 new jobs in the last 7 days” and “reach 180 million job seekers” — Indeed
  • Employers: How can I attract the right candidates?
  • Job Seekers: How can I effectively find my dream job?
  • 159,014 unique job titles — Discovered in resumes by Vettd
  • Employers: How can I make sense of the varying job titles people list on their resumes?
  • Job Seekers: How should I describe my experience so that an employer will understand?

The truly amazing part of this is that anyone in the world can get access to this unbelievable amount of information and use it for their own purpose. It is the greatest gift to future generations and it will bear fruit as long as it can be productive and actionable. Data science is an exciting industry and I look forward to seeing the companies that effectively harness its power to truly enrich the lives of individuals.