By embracing artificial intelligence, we can deliver better outcomes for our candidates, clients, and the business. It’s transforming how we think and informing how we act.”

- KEVIN SWEENEY, IT DIRECTOR, CPL RESOURCES
 
850 employees

1.5M

CANDIDATES PROCESSED VIA SALESFORCE

 
 

Sarah is a consultant for Ireland’s largest recruitment consultant, CPL. Every day, Sarah’s recruitment system is flooded with hundreds of CVs from applicants looking for a new job. Prioritising them occupies a good part of her day. To maximise candidate placement, Sarah needs to know which CVs to prioritise — and artificial intelligence is giving her a helping hand. “We are transforming our approach for selecting potential candidates by empowering our consultants with a ground-breaking new solution,” said Kevin Sweeney, IT Director.

CPL’s candidate evaluation app applies machine learning to eight years of recruitment data, enabling CPL to help predict candidates’ suitability for different vacancies. “The recruitment industry is evolving with AI capabilities increasingly widespread,” said Sweeney. “We’re combining the talent of our consultants with the efficiency of technology to deliver better results for both employers and job-seekers.”

More than 350 consultants work at CPL, helping clients across diverse industries such as healthcare, manufacturing, retail, and government to find permanent, temporary, and contractual staff. Having been recognised as a Trailblazer in recruitment in Ireland, the company has now set its sights on further building its presence and reputation in the UK and Europe.

To support continued growth, CPL needs to be able to identify the best candidates, and fast. “The recruitment industry is extremely competitive,” said Sweeney. “You’re only ever as good as yesterday’s placement, so we need to stay at the forefront by finding our clients the best candidates every time.”

 
 
 
 
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CPL has been tracking its candidates and clients via Salesforce since 2010. “We wanted a cloud-based solution for its scalability,” said Sweeney. “Recruitment is a volatile market; we need to be able to grow and consolidate our business quickly, and Salesforce makes that easy. We also wanted the ability to configure our own workflows without relying on third-party developers, as this can result in project delays and additional costs.”

More than 1.5 million candidates have been processed via JobScience, an application built on the Salesforce platform, since 2010, and every one of these records provides valuable intelligence for the new candidate evaluation app. “We knew we had a lot of value in our data but we had to find a way to get it in front of our users,” said Aidan Keenan, Business Analyst - Group IT.

Trailblazer Keenan worked with Sweeney on crunching this data, mapping workflows, and developing reports that would support its pioneering plans. “With artificial intelligence, we can turn historical data into actionable insights,” said Sweeney. “Within hours of receiving a CV, we’ll know the likelihood of the success. Given the high volume of CVs that we receive, this will massively improve consultant productivity.”

Built on Heroku and Einstein, the candidate evaluation app helps consultants better assess candidates applying for the same job, which will help them build a stronger short-list in a shorter timeframe. To safeguard the privacy of candidates and eliminate any bias, the app only uses key data points, such as job titles and education history, when applying machine learning.

The Einstein training model, built with random forest and linear modelling algorithms, is processed in Heroku each month to keep it updated with the latest successful placement results from JobScience. All new applications on JobScience are individually scored every day by sending the new Salesforce contacts’ profile to the Einstein AI model in Heroku.

 

The AI-enabled app is the latest in a series of transformations undertaken by CPL to maximise its recruitment resources and results. For example, the management team focused on identifying and measuring key job order attributes that can directly impact conversion rates, with some specific attributes increasing job placement success rate by 55%. CPL is also looking at all areas of the recruitment process to see where automation of machine learning and AI could give it a competitive advantage.

Once a candidate is placed, Salesforce automatically updates CPL’s finance systems to simplify the client billing processes. “We’re using solutions from the AppExchange to de-duplicate data and seamlessly integrate Salesforce with our accounting systems,” said Sweeney. “As Salesforce has open APIs, it’s really easy to connect the dots.”

 
It’s also really easy to connect different information sources. With Salesforce, CPL can aggregate candidate data from around 90 different sources, including job boards and websites. “Everything is not only in the same place but in the same format,” said Sweeney. “This makes it easier for consultants to keep in touch with candidates throughout their careers whether they are looking for a new job or not,” said Sweeney.
 

In such a dynamic industry, it’s really important for CPL’s senior leaders to understand market trends and potential impacts on the business. Managers who use Salesforce  no longer need to request specific reports; they can simply check their personal dashboards, either from their laptop or from their mobile device using the Salesforce Mobile App. “With mobile capabilities, it’s dead easy for us to jump on Salesforce and take a quick pulse of the market and the business,” explained Sweeney. “The dashboards display a range of key metrics, including open opportunities, team targets and candidates placed.”

Recruitment consultants also get tailored dashboards to help them manage their performance against targets. With access to historical data about client interactions, they can also identify and target lapsed accounts for business development.

CPL doesn’t just share data to empower its consultants; it also shares data to empower candidates and clients. The company uses the information captured in Sales Cloud to produce a quarterly job index, known as the CPL Employment Market Monitor. The report provides a comprehensive analysis of employment trends across various sectors, helping both clients and candidates get a feel for the market. “Thanks to our market knowledge, companies often come to us when to check the skills and salaries for an area before opening a new office,” said Sweeney. “The ability to provide such insights strengthens our reputation and brand.”

Although data is important to CPL, so too are its people. “Salesforce unifies teams and operations across our locations. Automated workflows encourage best practice approaches, which is particularly helpful when we’re merging newly acquired companies,” said Sweeney. CPL also uses Salesforce Chatter to collaborate, using a number of groups set up for both social and business purposes.

The company wants to automate the processing and administrative part of the recruitment process to give its consultants more time to focus on influencing the relationship and customer service side of their role.

In 2017, CPL’s innovative approach to using technology was recognised at the Irish Tech Excellence Awards. The CPL Agency Management System (CAMS), which includes Salesforce, landed the prestigious Private Sector Project of the Year award.

 
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