Survey – Middle East Employers prefer Online Recruitment

25Aug09

Middle_East_RecruitingMore than half of the region’s employers (52%) have said that using top jobsites is their preferred method of sourcing talent, according to the results of a recent online poll series conducted by the Middle East’s number one jobsite, Bayt.com.

Traditional methods of recruitment have now been relegated according to the results: just 11% of recruiters favor newspaper adverts, 9% prefer talent recommendations via word of mouth and 7% prefer finding talent via their own career website. Interestingly, careers fairs, seen as the mainstay method for finding employees in the region, was the preferred method by just 5% of those surveyed.

The ‘Using Online Job Sites’ June poll series conducted by Bayt.com sought to understand from employers just how significant a role online recruitment plays in their organisations and what they consider the benefits of online recruitment to be.

When it came to employers opinions on what the main advantages of online recruitment are, it was felt that there was a combination of advantages, but most pertinently was the fact that it is faster than other recruitment methods to which 21% of employers agreed.

Another advantage that 10% of employers found is that it is easier than other methods, while 9% agreed it was more far reaching than other methods of recruitment.

A further 5% felt it was the cheapest method for recruitment, while 4% considered it more efficient. Unsurprisingly, many of those that participated in the poll (40%) considered that there wasn’t one main advantage to online recruitment – its advantage lay in a combination of factors.

When asked how many professionals they have managed to source online in the past year, the employers had varying levels of success.

A quarter of those that participated in the poll said that they have managed to source between one to five professionals, while 23% said they had managed to source more than 15 professionals. Additionally, 6% of employers sourced between six and fifteen employees.

“The fact that the vast majority of employers surveyed have successfully recruited online, suggests that it has so far been a very beneficial method for finding top talent” commented Amer Zureikat, Bayt.com.

Furthermore, employers were asked how many professionals they aim to recruit online over the next year. More than three quarters of employers that participated in the poll answered they were going to recruit online: 30% stated they aim to recruit between one and five professionals, 12% aim to recruit between six and ten professionals, 7% between 11 and 15 and 29% more than 15 professionals.

“That so many are planning to recruit online this year makes it very clear that organisations trust it as a method for sourcing talent, and that it will likely have an increasingly fundamental role to play in the recruitment strategies of HR departments across the region.

It would be interesting to see over the course of the next couple of years how these figures change: the trend of online recruitment is currently gaining momentum for all kinds of reasons – including greater internet penetration and literacy in the region – and it is likely that soon the vast majority of organisations will use online recruitment for some, if not all, of their talent-sourcing requirements,” said Amer Zureikat.

In terms of how recruitment practices have changed between this year and the last, most organisations have made some adjustments, perhaps as a result of the economic downturn.

A total of 16% said they were using the most cost effective hiring methods, 13% said they have hiring freezes and another 13% said they were only replacing staff that leave. Surprisingly however, another 16% said they were hiring more staff than last year, suggesting some organisations are thriving, even during these challenging economic times.

“The data that we glean from polls such as these, which take the pulse of the region’s employers, provides very real and up to the minute insights into the region’s business environment and the current trends in recruitment.

Not only is this of great interest to businesses around the region, but it can serve as a tool for HR professionals and other industry stakeholders to understand how recruitment practices can be improved – to secure the best talent for greater competitive advantage,” concluded Amer Zureikat.

Data for the ‘Using Online Job Sites’ employer poll series was collected online between the period of 31st May and 13th July 2009, with a total of 564 employers across the Middle East.



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