Fraud and Non-existing AI Applicants Are Gigantic Problems for the Recruitment Industry

Adam Stafford, the CEO of Recruitics, An AI-powered end-to-end Talent Attraction and Conversion Platform, tells Serge and Shelley of the leading global Recruitment Podcast “The Recruitment Flex” about his most significant concerns for the recruitment industry. He addresses fraud and (fake) AI applications as one of the biggest recruitment challenges in our industry. His speaking loud and clear about this (from minute 21) makes him one of the first whistleblowers. Adam speaks about fraud and new application toolings. I gave it some additional context.

Geert-Jan Waasdorp on July 03, 2024 Average reading time: 2 min
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Fraud and Non-existing AI Applicants Are Gigantic Problems for the Recruitment Industry

A tsunami of fake applications and ghosting

Adam mentions fraud and AI tools that candidates are embracing. Today, and we are just at the starting point, volumes of applicants can be delivered without any filtering mechanism. This can be completely fake and AI-created applicants and applications. In this case, the candidate is non-existing, and this is fraud. It’s a big business model where the fraudsters make pennies per application and get paid by CpC and CpA models. With all the clicks from one aggregator to another, the fraudulent applications are mixed between the normal and ‘less fraudulent’. In the big short, Anthony Bourdain explains how this works with mortgages. In recruitment, it is the same way.

The other ‘less fraudulent’ is from the existing candidate and uses AI tools that apply on behalf of the candidate. This can happen 100+ times for one applicant without the person using the tools knowing where (s)he applied. Tools like Sonora and AIApply are 80+ other tools that are facilitating this. This is more of a signal that the candidate market is changing, and employers and agencies should better understand/listen to and meet the candidates where they are. Not by forcing time-consuming candidate-unfriendly-SAP SuccessFactors and Workday forms but by making them easy to apply. There should be a solution that a candidate (after being proven it exists) doesn’t have to fill in all the standard forms repeatedly every time they apply. Luckily, developments like CVwallet, Velocity Network, SkillsCV, Work-ID and Indeed are going that way, but we need to speed this up. It’s like building a sand castle to protect the market from a tsunami of candidates. Employers will suffer from this development, and honest and suitable candidates will also suffer. Agencies should build a new industry standard to protect themselves and the candidates.

Some blow the whistle; some keep very silent.

Fraud and AI are serious problems threatening the whole job board industry and everybody making money on applicants. Indeed and LinkedIn are not saying it out loud, but they are both moving to get more validation in the recruitment process. One of their main drivers for that is ‘as marketeers would say’… providing candidates a safe environment to look for a job. That might be true, but fighting fraud and criminal behaviour is another reason. I expect we would be shocked if we knew the real numbers, like the case that 400.000 fake LinkedIn profiles were built by two US companies. On September 23, many cases will be presented at the first global conference for Cyber Crime and the Labor Market. We will be shocked by the examples and the comprehensiveness of it all.

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Geert-Jan Waasdorp

Geert-Jan Waasdorp

Entrepreneur and Investor at Intelligence Group, Academie voor Arbeidsmarktcommunicatie, Werf&, Arbeidsmarktkansen, Recruitment Accelerator en
Geert-Jan Waasdorp has been active in the world of job market communication and recruitment since 1999. He started his journey as an analyst, and grow into an entrepreneur, business owner, investor and innovator. Waasdorp is a guest speaker, blogger and author of several books on recruitment and employer branding.
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