Job seekers lack trust in the fairness of traditional hiring methods, so are reclaiming power over the recruitment process – and business owners shouldn’t try to fight this. That’s according to thought leaders at the recent Rip It Up, Start Again conference.

Speaking at this event, entrepreneur Juliet Eccleston, co-founder of peer-to-peer recommendation firm, AnyGood? said:

“The growing lack of trust in recruiters as intermediaries means that individuals are taking matters into their own hands. We’ve already seen it happen with estate agents and travel agents: the success of businesses such as Purplebricks and Airbnb shows that people realise that they already have the resources that they need and, as a result, are eliminating the agents that have traditionally acted on their behalf. Consequently, what we are seeing is a ‘power to the people’ shift with some large corporations among those feeling the disruption.

“The recruitment industry is already experiencing the effect of this growing movement – for example, jobseekers are now using their own connections to find work in our gig economy. It stems from the fact that hiring is a process which often lacks transparency and fairness for candidates. I’ve heard of many cases of individuals wondering why they haven’t been appointed or even shortlisted and being given flimsy explanations. And, all too often, interviewers hire in their own image, which results in a workforce which lacks diversity.

“While we’re now seeing an increase in the number of candidates opting to use recruitment apps to job hunt, they are quickly realising that these aren’t any more transparent. Although you can compare apps using online reviews, you can’t be sure that they are using algorithms which work in your favour as opposed to eliminating you. Candidates don’t want to face unconscious bias: they need to see evidence of employers actively addressing this.

“All of this means that jobseekers are crying out for businesses to modernise their hiring methods and show their integrity by recruiting in ways that are fair and clear. Firms which ignore this demand and continue to use outdated methods such as agencies and job boards run the risk of missing out on top talent.”