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Amberjack creates disruptive recruitment process with Unilever

Amberjack has partnered with its client Unilever to create a disruptive recruitment selection process in the early careers space.


Unilever’s Future Leaders Programme (UFLP), attracts c.250,000 applications for 800 hires in 60 countries each year. Since millennials will make up 50% of the workforce by 2020, Unilever says it must ensure that it continues to attract the brightest talent. To recruit these digital disrupters to shake up its organisation, Unilever needed a game-changing approach.


Amberjack says the new recruitment process is the first time any business has launched a fully digital recruitment process. Launched in Europe in September and following successful roll outs in parts of Asia and North America it will be released across the rest of the world during the remainder of this year.


Designed specifically to meet the demands of millennials, the new programme uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) to assess candidates removing the potential for unconscious bias in the recruitment process. The flexible new process is quick and interactive enabling candidates to benefit from two-way feedback at every stage. The aim is to help all applicants in their career regardless of whether they are successful or not.


A strengths-based approach to candidate assessment has long been considered innovative to date. But the new Unilever process benefits from Amberjack’s approach to interviewing, using future-focused-scenario-based questions. This approach has more emphasis on role-fit and future potential. It reduces chances of rejecting candidates from less privileged backgrounds and provides a more engaging and realistic job preview than ever before.


The new process has four main stages. Firstly candidates complete a short online application form that syncs with their LinkedIn account. Successful candidates are then invited to play a series of games. The way in which applicants play these games allows Unilever to get an insight into the candidate’s potential and how well they connect with the company’s goals and purpose.


The very best candidates then take part in a video interview for which they record their answers at a convenient time. For the final stage of the process candidates are invited to a Discovery Centre, where they get to know each other and collaborate virtually, giving them an immersive experience of a ‘day in the life’ at Unilever. Nothing can be learned in advance. This increases authenticity and ensures that candidates are assessed on future potential rather than learned behaviours.


This initiative has been shortlisted for Best Recruitment and Talent Management Initiative at the CIPD People Management Awards 2017.


Melissa Gee Kee, strategy director to CHRO & Global HR4HR Director, said, “When deciding which partner to work with to redesign the selection process for the Unilever Future Leaders Programme, Amberjack stood out as our global partner who would be the golden thread and help bring our digital disruption project together. They certainly delivered, helped to inspire and overall delighted us through each of the stages. Their willingness to be pioneers, combined with the expert validation we needed to create our ground-breaking new process differentiates them from the rest of the pack. They have been true partners in disruption and contributed to the success of our new digital selection process through their innovation, creativity, and ability to deliver fantastic results.


“Amberjack are also the team that makes the magic happen in the UK, delighting our talent teams by recruiting the digital disrupters Unilever needs.”


Leena Nair, Unilever chief HR officer, added, "From the CV, to the candidate search, to the interview, we're moving towards a digital hiring model for graduates.


“We know that young people increasingly live their lives online and our recruitment process must reflect that. This new process is faster, simpler and more flexible allowing young people to fit applying around their lives.


“This innovative approach provides an immersive experience and attracts the best young talent to the business helping us in our vision to grow the business, whilst decoupling our environmental footprint and increasing our positive social impact.”


Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.com

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