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Round Up February 2024


Round up is the monthly show on The Recruiting Future Podcast channel that highlights episodes you may have missed and gives you my take on some of the key learnings from the guests.

Episodes mentioned in this Round Up:

Ep 591: Is AI Changing Jobseeker Behaviour?

Ep 591: Is AI Changing Jobseeker Behaviour?

Ep 592: Understanding Skills

Ep 592: Understanding Skills

Ep 593: The Career Forward Mindset

Ep 593: The Career Forward Mindset

Ep 594: Recruiting Data Science Skills

Ep 594: Recruiting Data Science Skills

Ep 595: Proving The Value Of Talent Acquisition

Ep 595: Proving The Value Of Talent Acquisition

Ep 596: Expectations and Experience

Ep 596: Expectations and Experience

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Matt: Support for this podcast comes from Plum. Plum believes that when people flourish, business thrives. With its unmatched scalability, this powerful talent assessment tool uses science-backed insights to measure and match human potential to job needs, enhancing talent decisions across the employee journey from hire to retire. To learn more, visit their website at That’s

[Recruiting Future theme]

Hi there, this is Matt Alder. Welcome to the February Round Up Episode of the Recruiting Future podcast. If you’ve not listened to Round Up before, it’s a short review of the episodes that I’ve published in the last month to make sure that you don’t miss out on the valuable insights my guests are sharing. My thanks to for their supportive Round Up. Please take a look at their website and all of the great work they’re doing. I was lucky enough during February to talk to a lot of TA leaders, both as part of a piece of research I’m contributing to on skills-based hiring and face to face at the recent CIPD, Recruiting and Retention Conference in London.

On the back of these conversations, I’m even more convinced that 2024 will be a landmark year for talent acquisition, and Kevin Wheeler, the founder of the Future of Talent Institute, describes it as the first year of a decade of change on a podcast interview I’ll be publishing in March. I’m going to keep the podcast very much focused on bringing you insights on how employers are making sense of these changes, and I’ll be launching some other resources to help over the next few weeks. More on that soon. The interviews on Recruiting Future in February offer some excellent perspectives on the two big themes of the year so far, AI and skills. Conversations about AI’s impact on recruiting tend to focus entirely on the employer and recruiter viewpoint.

However, it may well be that the most potent force of change for talent acquisition comes from AI-facilitated shifts in job seeker behavior. Employers are already seeing a rise in applications that they suspect are being driven by AI tools that facilitate bulk applying. The use of LLMs to create and edit resumes is undoubtedly widespread, and we’re also seeing examples of AI being used to hack online interviews and assessments. There is still much debate about where these activities fall on the scale from legitimate assistance to outright fraud. What is clear though is that this is an unstoppable tide that will have severe implications for recruiting processes. Early careers leaders are already reporting record numbers of applications for graduate and apprentice schemes, and application levels are going up in many other areas of hiring as well. What do employers do when they’re inundated by applications perfectly tailored to the role that are impossible to assess using current tools and techniques?

My first guest in February on Episode 592 was Richard Collins, co-founder of CV Wallet. Richard has decades of experience in recruitment marketing and talent acquisition. He’s recently been diving deeply into the issues caused by jobseeker use of AI and how the solutions to the problems might just make recruiting better for everyone. In our conversation, we talked about potential solutions based around prequalifying and pre-verifying without adding any further friction to the process. The shelf life of skills is getting ever shorter, which has significant implications for talent acquisition. It’s essential that TA leaders take an active role in developing the overall skill strategy for their business. If employers want to be effective, skills-based organizations, it’s clear that talent acquisition, talent management, L&D, and strategic workforce planning must all be closely aligned.

My guest on Episode 592 was Malcolm Taylor, Head of Capability at the UK Health Security Agency. In the last few years, Malcolm has led a highly effective initiative to use data to drive upskilling talent development and talent acquisition. In our conversation, he shared valuable insights on skill strategy and some interesting perspectives on the likely role that AI will play in learning and development moving forward. Work and jobs are changing and the speed of change continues to accelerate. Whether you’re in the fourth decade of your working life or looking for your first job, managing a career against this background of disruptive, often unpredictable change is a challenge for everyone. Things are also being made worse by continuing pay equality and workplace bias.

On Episode 593, I spoke to Grace Puma, the former COO of PepsiCo, and Christiana Smith Shi, the former president of Director-to-Consumer at Nike. Grace and Christiana have recently authored a book called, Career Forward: Strategies from Women Who’ve Made It. The motivation behind writing the book was to empower women to maximize their career journey, get paid what they’re worth, and navigate the unexpected shifts that happen in the current world of work. There is some excellent advice here that Grace and Christiana believe is applicable to anyone looking to develop their career in our turbulent times. With the development and adoption of AI accelerating at an unprecedented pace, the demand for data scientists and data skills in general is snowballing. To recruit successfully in this competitive talent market, TA must understand the specific data skills that organization needs, and the intrinsic career motivations of the data professionals they seek to engage with.

My guest on Episode 594 was Akshay Swaminathan, Head of Data Science at Cerebral and coauthor of a new book called Winning with Data Science. In our conversation, Akshay offers an insider’s view on the data science talent market, what motivates data scientists to move companies, and the most effective recruiting processes for people with this skill set? Essential listening for anyone recruiting data science professionals or working in talent markets with similar skills shortages. These are turbulent times for talent acquisition, particularly those teams operating in the technology sector. Despite the continuing demand for technology skills, layoffs are still happening, with many TA teams now considerably downsized from where they were a couple of years ago. Proving TA’s strategic and monetary value has never been more critical. So how can TA leaders make their business case against such a challenging backdrop?

On Episode 595, I spoke to Sam Berthoud, VP of Talent Solutions at hackajob. Sam combines his experience working with a vast number of talent acquisition leaders with hackajob’s huge data set to provide some excellent insights into the tech recruiting market, and highly actionable advice on tactics TA can employ to prove the scale of its value to the business. It’s almost four years since the first pandemic lockdowns, and even now it doesn’t seem long enough ago to get a proper perspective on how much the pandemic has changed things. It is already pretty clear that expectations of and attitudes to work have shifted considerably, with significant implications for recruiting and retention.

My guest on Episode 596 was Annette Andrews, Founder & Director of Acaria Coaching and a former Chief People Officer. Annette works with large organizations to help them adjust their people practices and policies to align with the post pandemic perspectives of their employees and future employees. She has valuable insights on what employers need to do to attract and retain the talent they need. In our wide-ranging conversation, we also discuss the impact of aging populations, the consequences of the deterioration of the candidate experience and talent mobility across both functions and industries. So, onwards into March and it’s a big month for me. I’ll be at the Transform Conference in Las Vegas next week, recording some live interviews and hosting a panel. Please come and say hello if you’re going.

I’m also going to be running a live Ask Me Anything webinar on the 19th of March to celebrate the 600th episode of the Recruiting Future podcast. I’m also finishing off a new digital course that I’ll be launching in April. You can make sure that you stay up to date with everything that’s happening by subscribing to my newsletter at, that’s As you would expect, I’ve also got some excellent guests lined up for March on the podcast, so don’t miss out. Subscribe to the show wherever you get your podcasts. Thanks very much for listening. I’ll be back next time, and I hope you’ll join me.

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