How your tech stack can streamline onboarding

how your tech stack can streamline your onboarding

As recruitment becomes increasingly digital, fast-paced, and consumer-grade, onboarding candidates remains a hurdle for staffing firms. Requiring candidates to fill out tedious documentation and verify endless credentials risks having them drop out of the process altogether.

According to our recent GRID Talent Trends Report – our annual survey of over 1,000 global contingent workers – 62% of candidates who stopped working with a staffing firm did so because the process took too long. Onboarding, especially when it comes to filling out forms, is a particular weak point in the recruitment lifecycle. The flip side is that firms who streamline onboarding stand to benefit; candidates who had a positive onboarding experience with respect to forms were 57% more likely to keep working with their current staffing firm.

That’s where the Bullhorn Marketplace comes in. Bullhorn integrates with over 100 Marketplace partners to help you build your tech stack and give candidates a seamless recruitment experience. Combine your tech stack with the best talent engagement practices of Connected Recruiting, and you’re on your way to building an ever-growing and consistently engaged talent pool.

To learn more about how their technologies complement the Bullhorn ecosystem and help make onboarding a painless process, we sat down with Zoe Perlongo and Alan Gilbert from Essential StaffCARE and Kara Margraf and Brendan Duffy from IntelAgree. Read on for their thoughts on common onboarding pain points, how technology is changing the game, and what firms can do to make the onboarding process not a weakness but a strength.

Plus, check out our two previous interviews with Marketplace partners on the two previous stages of Connected Recruiting: attracting and engaging with candidates.

Can you tell us a little about your organization?

IntelAgree: IntelAgree is an AI-powered contract management platform designed to make the contracting process as easy as possible. Our machine learning can read key terms, clauses, and dates in contracts, regardless of whether it’s your paper or client paper. With IntelAgree and Bullhorn, you can optimize every part of your contract process, so your team can efficiently create, negotiate, sign, manage, search, and analyze your staffing contracts.

Essential StaffCARE: Serving over 2,500 staffing company clients and enrolling over 500,000 temporary employees annually, Essential StaffCARE (ESC) is the largest provider of healthcare benefits to the staffing industry, offering insurance plans that keep employees healthy, improve retention, and reduce turnover. Our essential healthcare product is a voluntary Fixed Indemnity plan, custom-designed to affordably support the day-to-day medical needs of the average hourly worker. Research shows that workers enrolled in the ESC Fixed Indemnity plan stay on the job 47% longer than those who are not enrolled. We also offer ancillary plans like Dental and Vision, as well as plans and other solutions compliant with the ACA. 

ESC operates on the industry’s only staffing-specific administrative platform, featuring turn-key implementation, communication, enrollment, and administrative programs designed for staffing. Our healthcare and enrollment solutions also have onboarding and payroll integration capabilities, simplifying the benefits administration and enrollment process.

How does what you do benefit both staffing firms and candidates?

Essential StaffCARE: ESC has always endeavored to create valuable, affordable, and easy-to-access healthcare benefit options that work for employees and create a tangible ROI for employers. 

The advantages for employees start during the enrollment process. Our electronic enrollment tools provide an immediate offer of coverage with intuitive resources like help videos, easy-to-read benefit explanations, and live telephonic customer support. Employees can select the right combination of benefits that best fit their needs. 

Employers enjoy a streamlined enrollment process that seamlessly meshes with their onboarding workflow, providing enhanced ACA compliance and reducing touchpoints along the way. Healthcare benefit enrollment is naturally streamlined and becomes a recruiting advantage instead of an obstacle. Employers also benefit from improved employee health and job satisfaction that result from affordable, effective coverage: less time lost due to illness, reduced turnover, and increased employee morale.

IntelAgree: IntelAgree streamlines contract management so that staffing teams can focus on the needs of new hires. The focus is less on “Where is this SOW?” or “Where’s this critical attachment?” which allows teams to spend more time on valuable, impactful work, not busy work.

What are the biggest pain points for candidates that might cause them to drop off during the onboarding stage?

IntelAgree: Redundant data entry, like a candidate having to enter their name five times on five different documents; poor user experience, especially if you can’t complete onboarding steps on a phone or tablet; the inability to access documentation after completion; and time spent to receive documentation in a competitive marketplace. Contract managers should make sure they have a single source of truth in a candidate’s records to avoid that candidate feeling like they’re falling through the cracks.

Essential StaffCARE: Healthcare benefits are often an afterthought in the onboarding process. When onboarding and enrollment don’t work together, the employee can become confused whether from launching multiple apps or logging into multiple websites – sometimes even switching back and forth between a keyboard and a paper enrollment form! This can be frustrating for the employee and the employer, leading to abandoning the process altogether.

The benefits enrollment process should be integrated, easy to understand, and concise. Systems that share data to pre-populate online forms make it simple for candidates to move from screen to screen. 

What are some things every staffing firm should be doing to make the onboarding process easier for candidates?

Essential StaffCARE: Universal vendor integration is key. Your onboarding platform needs to communicate with your entire vendor ecosystem. These integrations help automate assigning new hire tasks by sharing data and status between systems, reducing user error and speeding up the entire workflow. 

Make your onboarding process mobile-friendly. Today, the majority of job seekers reach for their mobile devices over a desktop/laptop computer, not only to apply for jobs but to communicate with their prospective employer as well.

Ask your third-party vendors for any pre-written marketing material designed to be employee-facing. For benefits, this can be especially helpful as it helps take the burden off of the recruiter to explain these programs to applicants.

IntelAgree: Speed. Get candidates their onboarding documentation as quickly as possible. 

Accuracy is also key. Make sure payment details are accurate and reflect what was discussed and approved during the recruitment process. The onboarding process needs to be digital, smooth, and painless. 

How have onboarding and compliance evolved in the past few years as the staffing industry becomes more digital?

Essential StaffCARE: Technology is making the onboarding and benefits enrollment process easier, both for candidates and employers. Job seekers are presented with a user-friendly experience that takes them through the process step by step and anticipates their questions. Employers have customizable turnkey solutions that create guardrails to ensure compliance and completion.  

Firms should make important forms mandatory so applicants must complete them to finalize onboarding. Important forms should also be a standard part of onboarding packets so employers can easily assign all key tasks through the click of a button rather than assigning individual steps once a candidate is placed. Firms should also employ a callback code when returning a user from a third-party online form back to the core onboarding system. This allows your staff to use Bullhorn as your system of record for all new hire onboarding tasks.

Can you talk a little bit about the role of AI in what you do and in working with candidates?

IntelAgree: AI is core to our product. Contracts and onboarding documentation tend to be difficult to read and understand, so AI helps with making informed decisions. AI is great at reading lengthy, legalese-ridden documents and providing summaries of what something really means. 

Whether it’s creating a document, completing a document, understanding what’s in a document, routing things for approval based on the contents of a document, or automatically reminding people of key dates and milestones, AI provides a huge value add for clients and candidates alike.  

How do you think AI will change the staffing industry in the years to come?

IntelAgree: It’s hard to predict, but AI – particularly generative AI – will continue to have a huge impact in the world of contracts. Generative AI is not always about trying to have more output; it’s about improving quality, too. Generative AI might help staffing teams maintain their current pace while increasing the quality of their work and reducing risk. This is particularly important in areas like compliance where, currently, identifying key compliance issues requires running machine learning or manually reviewing and then reviewing the results. 


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