Face Recognition. The Future of Recruitment

Imagine a recruiter can watch a video of your face and analyse your facial expressions. It would give an accurate reading of your personality, identifying traits like passion, sincerity, nervousness and disagreement. Now imagine you can automate this process through innovative use of camera and software technology. How would this change the face of recruitment?

Face Recognition software is taking the world by storm. Driven by increased threats of terrorism and heightened security, governments are searching for new ways to analyse people on CCTV cameras. And businesses are looking into how to change their marketing dynamically, in response to emotional reactions of their customers.

In Retail video surveillance is increasingly doing double duty to help stores improve sales. Many of the companies providing facial recognition capabilities, such as Axis Communications (which supplies Saks with IP cameras), Japanese tech giant NEC and Face First of California, either directly or through partners, also offer sophisticated analytics applications that capture your in-store “dwell times”, responses to product displays and traffic flow.  In Europe, a number of high-end hotels and retailers are reportedly using facial recognition to help identify VIPs and celebrities for preferred treatment when they enter the front door. In the UK, a 2015 survey of 150 retail executives by the IT services firm Computer Services Corporation suggested that a quarter of all British shops use facial recognition. Fashion retailers have been especially keen: the survey reported that 59% use some form of facial recognition.

Software algorithms can analyse images of a person from uploaded photos, live-streamed video and mugshots in a database. It then encodes facial features, width and height ratio, and other elements like the corners of the eyes or mouth. The output can indicate whether somebody may be happy, sad, stressed or relaxed. It could tell for example if somebody is more likely to be a criminal, a terrorist or a gambler for example.

Fidio is a pre-recorded candidate presentation tool designed to improve the success ratio of interviews. Candidates are invited to video record answers to questions. Employers are able to watch the videos to make more comprehensive hiring decisions based on assessing the candidate’s video. Obviously, adding face recognition technology to this video platform could be of tremendous benefit to an employer. Here are just a few of them:

  • Initial Candidate screening – CV screening is a tedious task for a hiring manager/recruiter. A recruiter would look at things like skills and career history. By looking at personal interests and style of the CV recruiters may get some additional information about personality of the candidate. By adding video, this personality aspect will be highlighted. But it is all quite time consuming to analyse. If initial screening on personality and fit can be done through face recognition software, a recruiter can gain time and increase the chance the right candidate is invited for the interview.
  • Personality screening – This is probably the biggest benefit a recruiter can get from face recognition software. You can do an initial screening on personality characteristics like is the person relaxed, stressed, anxious, excited, interested, disengaged etc. Software can identify the smallest changes in position and shape of eyes, mouth, and jaw and map these with a database of character traits. It will give you an objective assessment of somebody’s behaviour during an interview. It will give you an indication if people are who they say they are.
  • Culture fit – A very important indicator in recruiting is whether the candidate would fit in the culture of the company. Advanced face recognition software could be used to capture the facial expressions of all existing employees and come up with the “ideal” company face. You could then analyse the face of a candidate and check how close he/she scores in relation to the “ideal” employee. Culture fit is often a key indicator for attrition in an organisation. And you can’t always rely on the judgement of your recruiter.

In the future we may not even have to interview staff, we may rely on an algorithm to make the decision for us. Does this sound farfetched? 27% of Americans found there partner online by and algorithm matching them to a person http://pewrsr.ch/1LSCWsJ

You can’t rely on computers for everything. And in a way you are right. In the end it comes down to common sense judgement from the recruiter who talks face to face with a candidate. But face recognition can help in doing that initial screening of going through hundreds of video CVs. And the technology is there to do this. It may not be perfect yet, but it will soon be. And if you don’t believe me, check this site with some amazing face recognition demos. Or check out what Blippar is doing in bringing face recognition to your mobile phone. Convinced?

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