The March of Chatbots into Recruitment: Recruiters’ Experiences, Expectations, and Design Opportunities
Organizations’ hiring processes are increasingly shaped by various digital tools and e-recruitment systems. However, there is little understanding of the recruiters’ needs for and expectations towards new systems. This paper investigates recruitment chatbots as an emergent form of e-recruitment, offering a low-threshold channel for recruiter-applicant interaction. The rapid spread of chatbots and the casual nature of their user interfaces raise questions about the perceived benefits, risks, and suitable roles in this sensitive application area. To this end, we conducted 13 semi-structured interviews, including 11 interviews with people who are utilizing recruitment chatbots and two people from companies that are developing recruitment chatbots. The findings provide a qualitative account of their expectations and motivations, early experiences, and perceived opportunities regarding the current and future use of chatbots in recruitment. While chatbots answer the need for attracting new candidates, they have also introduced new challenges and work tasks for the recruiters. The paper offers considerations that can help to redesign recruitment bots from the recruiter’s viewpoint.