By June Ramli
Kuala Lumpur, October 4: The COVID-19 pandemic has brought a sea of change in the way companies hire new talent.
These days the whole recruitment process has gone online with prospective employers meeting their potential hires either through Microsoft Teams, Google Meet or Zoom for a much needed chat.
DailyStraits.com recently spoke to FastJobs Malaysia Partnerships Manager Choo Ping Hao (pictured above), a tech-driven job platform which connects Malaysians to job opportunities to find out how companies hire new talents using their tool.
1. How has the pandemic changed the hiring process for companies on a whole?
Talent acquisition remains a priority for many businesses that continue to be impacted by the pandemic. Our clients, including ones that fall under the essential services category, require a large talent pool to meet their business demands, regain, and improve their share of the market. So, as a tech-driven job platform, we looked at providing innovative solutions by developing and offering e-FastRecruit and FastGig. Leveraging on both technology and industry insights, we believe these first mobile-first innovations can effectively facilitate seamless mass hiring for our clients while easing the experience of jobseekers for gainful employment.
Through these services, we are facilitating and enabling the mass hiring of job seekers from all walks of life, especially those from the entry-level and non executive categories. Our goal remains steadfast, which is to provide gainful employment to as many Malaysians as possible, which we are confident can assist towards improving the nation’s employment rate. Our e-FastRecruit service was designed to evolve the hiring process by enabling companies to continue their mass hiring efforts to meet the demands of their businesses through the country’s varying degrees of lockdown measures.
Through the e-FastRecruit service, companies are able to undertake 100 per cent digital and online mass hiring campaigns, effectively and efficiently and within accelerated timeframes. It has also permitted our clients (employers) to tap on an increasingly expanding gig workforce database. In the initial phase of introducing the e-FastRecruit service, we successfully partnered with a Japanese retail company, Don Don Donki (also known as JONETZ) for the opening of their very first store in Kuala Lumpur where we conducted online mass hiring exercise and we saw over 300 Malaysian talent attaining gainful employment.
By facilitating a huge number of interviews through e-FastRecruit during the pandemic, we had gained greater insights into the evolving mindset of jobseekers and human resource practitioners with regards to talent acquisition and retention. We found that many job seekers were keen to explore gig jobs.
These jobs are skewed towards independent contractors, online platform workers, contract firm workers, on-call workers, and/or temporary workers.
This is because gig jobs offer unrivalled flexibility and makes it easier for jobseekers to join the workforce and start earning fast.
Additionally, these jobs are gaining favour rapidly, even in sectors that aren’t conventionally known to be gig work centric. Therefore, in view of the booming gig economy sector in Malaysia, we introduced FastGig to cater to the needs of “Giggers.”
We also introduced FastGig as we saw the potential for our clients including ones in sectors that aren’t conventionally gig work centric to reach out to us to build their contingency workforce to support their existing teams.
2. Why is it important for employers to adopt to new and innovative technological tools in their hiring efforts?
It’s important because we must accept the fact that some things will never be the same as we move toward an endemic world. The pandemic has been a catalyst for employers to quickly adopt innovative technology tools to survive and now, to thrive in the new normal of living and working. By adapting and implementing innovative use of technology, our clients are able to address the limitations when it comes to hiring. Further, while we accept that the pandemic has fundamentally changed the way we live, communicate, socialise and work, we are now witnessing the role of technology in recruitment. For example, in the past 18 months, we saw essential services sectors adapting their business models, embracing technological adoption in their recruitment processes, and shifting more of their hiring needs through technology enabled platforms like FastJobs. In view of this, we are doing our part to encourage our clients to adapt to the change, conduct their hiring efforts online, and to place more strategic investment in technological infrastructure to enable a seamless hiring experience for them as well as for the jobseekers. With the right technology, clients are able to ensure a smooth interview process and proceed with scheduled interviews despite restrictions on movement. Based on our observation, jobseekers are more likely to attend online interviews rather than face-to-face interviews at this moment. This is supported by the fact that when we organise online interview campaigns, we see a rise in applications on our platforms for companies that conduct the online interviews.
3. Has technology truly facilitated jobseekers to apply for and land jobs through FastJobs?
Yes, as shared when we highlighted jobs that offer online interviews, we witnessed a rise in applications on our platforms. As for easing the job seeking experience, we streamline job applications through our ‘WhatsApp to Apply’ and ‘FastChat’ features, which connect jobseekers directly to reliable and trusted employers in Malaysia, across all sectors.
Additionally, both employers and shortlisted candidates can connect in real-time and receive fast responses. For those that do not have a resume, they are able to use our free resume builder platform that is available on our website and FastJobs’ App. We also help facilitate the job seeking process by highlighting active job posts via targeted email blasts and push app notifications to our jobseekers’ database which currently stands at over 1.4 million.
We also utilise our social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn to educate jobseekers via creative ways like using reels and short videos on matters like interview tips and etiquette.
4. Do jobseekers prefer applying for jobs through mobile phones as compared to websites?
Yes. During our e-FastRecruit campaign, we found that 80 per cent of job seekers were using their mobile phones for job interviews. This is the reason why we have gone mobile first. It is convenient for jobseekers to apply for jobs via mobile phones as they do not have to worry about using a laptop, especially for those who do not own one. Plus, jobseekers find it faster to verify if the employer has received or viewed their job application and follow up on WhatsApp to check on the status of their application.
5. Who are your competitors?
We do not consider other recruitment agencies as competitors. On the contrary, we respect them as collaborators. For FastJobs, in view of our niche in driving innovative technology driven recruitment solutions for our client employers and jobseekers, we are clear of our end goal which is to provide gainful employment to Malaysians from all walks of life. We believe that by collaborating with government and private entities which have the same goal as us, and especially during these unprecedented times, we can collectively ensure that the nation’s employment rate grows from good to better.
6. What are some of the expansion plans for the year?
FastJobs’ expansion plans for the year include providing hiring solutions to more companies across all key economic sectors through our e-FastRecruit and FastGig services to address the challenges faced by employers in the current situation and as we move towards post pandemic recovery. We also have plans to increase our presence beyond Klang Valley and to extend our services and solutions to more Malaysian employers and jobseekers.
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