Data is the new gold, and there’s no doubt people want to protect their information as best as they can. This prompts an important conversation about recruitment compliance. What’s the importance of data privacy and how is it relevant to you as a recruiter? Data privacy and security in recruitment are all about what information you seek from your candidates and about taking steps to make sure they remain safe.

Ensuring recruitment compliance is important not just because non-compliance could result in a breach of regulations like the GDPR. In fact, it also helps you build trust among your candidates, maintain your employer brand image and your reputation as an employer in the industry.

A study shows that as many as 51% of millennials and 53% of Gen Z respondents are somewhat or very concerned about their online privacy. This is important to take note of, considering the changing landscape of recruitment processes and how we go about the recruitment process.

Staying compliant with data privacy regulations can seem intimidating but it can be fairly simple to maintain a proper degree of data privacy when it comes to recruitment by keeping a few things in mind.

Recruitment Compliance Around Data Privacy Measures

As a recruiter, it’s important to be mindful of what your recruitment process projects of you as an employer. Things as simple as how much or how little information you seek about your potential candidates can be damaging or beneficial to your brand.

Here’s a quick rundown of what data privacy and security practices you should incorporate when hiring talent:

1. Choosing The Right Applicant Tracking System (ATS) & Candidate Feedback Tools

To drive an efficient recruitment process that is compliant with regulations, you need to make sure you’re using the right applicant tracking system or ATS. To find the best ATS for your recruitment process, you need to assess your requirements depending on the size of your firm and which features you’re likely to need to make the process more efficient.

One of the most valuable features of the ATS is the analytics it can provide you with. However, it’s important to note that analytics are generated based on the data that’s collected from candidates.

Make sure your ATS and Candidate Experience (CandE) tools are only collecting information that is necessary and not asking candidates for specific personal or demography-related information that would otherwise not be necessary.

Here at Starred, we take data security & data protection very seriously.

2. Encrypting Emails 

Emails are the primary mode of official correspondence between your candidates and your company. Everything from scheduling interviews to sending selected candidates job offer letters is done through email and there is often a lot of sensitive information exchanged through these email threads.

As an employer, it is not only in your interest to protect this data for brand image purposes, but it’s also important from an ethical standpoint. To be a fair and ethical employer, you have to be dedicated to protecting the information of your potential recruits and employees alike.

Encrypting your emails and any attachments contained within them is vital to your recruitment process data security checklist. You should also consider adding a note to your email letting your candidates know that any information exchanged between you is encrypted and safe. This will go a long way in building trust.

3. Keep It Minimal

You can never go wrong with keeping things minimal and only asking for information that is vital to the recruitment process. Asking for irrelevant personal information such as that about race, caste or creed can be very damaging to your brand and may even attract discrimination claims and lawsuits.

As a recruiter, it’s up to you to make sure your candidates know that the recruitment process they are put through will treat them fairly. The best way to do this is to limit yourself to asking candidates only about what is relevant and crucial to the job.

4. Using Regulatory Frameworks As A Benchmark

Over the past couple of years, data privacy has become a hot debate. With jurisdictions such as the EU introducing stringent data privacy regulations like the GDPR, there is a well-defined framework about what information can be sought from candidates and how it can be used without compromising their data privacy and security rights.

ISO and GDPR are well-respected as robust standards that do their best to preserve the integrity of data. Making sure you’re compliant with these standards and getting certified to do so is a great way to ensure that you’re not overstepping boundaries and following the best possible protocols to keep your candidates’ information safe and sound.

A study showed that more than half (53%) of the total respondents felt confident that their data was stored responsibly since the implementation of the GDPR data security framework.

You can even opt for SOC2, which is one of, if not the most reputable accreditation security standards in the industry. Being certified as SOC2 compliant means that your data security practices were audited and acknowledged to be among the best in class. This certification instills confidence in your candidates and employees that you are doing your best to keep their data safe, and that goes a long way when building a relationship with them.

TL;DR (Too Long; Didn’t Read)

When it comes to Recruitment Compliance, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

Its relevance lies in the fact that it can help you improve trust among your candidates, all while maintaining your employer brand and reputation.

You should start off by choosing the right ATS and Candidate Experience feedback tool. Also remember to encrypt emails, as they often contain sensitive information. Furthermore, don’t ask for information you do not need. Your candidates will appreciate it, and there will be less data in your systems that might be compromised. Finally, we encourage you to use regulatory frameworks such as SOC2 as a benchmark.