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Address Today’s Challenges But Also Assess Tomorrow’s

By Peter Weddle, CEO TAtech

It’s common sense – and good business practice – to focus on the near term. Face the challenges that are right in front of you. They hold the greatest potential peril, so deal with them and get to everything else when time and space permit. That approach may work for Coca Cola and Proctor & Gamble, but for tech companies, and especially those in the talent acquisition field, it’s a dangerous even fatal approach. The future holds as much if not more peril as anything happening right now. Some call this situation the innovator’s dilemma. I think it’s just as accurate to describe it as talent tech’s dilemma.

Shelly Palmer recently quoted Clayton Christensen’s definition of the innovator’s dilemma:

“The reason [why great companies failed] is that good management itself was the root cause. Managers played the game the way it’s supposed to be played. The very decision-making and resource allocation processes that are key to the success of established companies are the very processes that reject disruptive technologies: listening to customers; tracking competitors’ actions carefully; and investing resources to design and build higher-performance, higher-quality products that will yield greater profit. These are the reasons why great firms stumbled or failed when confronted with disruptive technology change.”

Talent technology companies themselves have been just such a disruptive force in talent acquisition. Twenty-five years ago, job boards humbled the greatest newspapers in the world, companies that had dominated the recruitment advertising business for generations. More recently, conversational AI solutions and chatbots have forever changed the way job seekers interact with employers, and online assessment products have turned traditional paper-based instruments into museum exhibits. Recruiting remains an intensely human-centric activity, but now it is best executed as a partnership between TA professionals and technology.

TAtech’s Exclusive Roundtables tackle some of the most important topics in talent acquisition. Presented online, they are a 30-minute unscripted conversation featuring five thought leaders from TAtech Member companies and Professional Members. The next Roundtable will be held on March 29 at 11 am ET, 8 am PT and 4 pm GMT. It will explore the question, “How Can Technology Help to Optimize the Recruiter’s Experience?” Register now and join us!

Despite their success to date, there’s an axiom that every talent technology company would do well to remember: Those who do not know history’s mistakes are doomed to repeat them. What does that mean in practical terms? Even as talent technology companies are successfully dealing with today’s challenges – an upside-down talent market, a slowing global economy and changing goals and behaviors among job seekers – they must also be thinking about and preparing for whatever tomorrow may bring. They can either be the newspapers and paper-based assessments or the technology solutions of the 21st century.

Here are just some of the questions they need to be thinking about:
• Will resumes finally be replaced by something better – a credible and continuously refreshed record of an individual’s knowledge, skills and experience – and if so, how will that affect talent technology companies?
• What will be the next step in improving the candidate experience in each and every phase of the recruiting process and how will that impact talent technology companies?
• How will the life goals, expectations and behaviors of workers change over the next 3-5 years, and what will that mean for talent technology companies?
• And perhaps most importantly, how will the increasing automation of work – and the resulting reduction in the need for human workers – affect the business of talent technology?

To help talent technology companies begin their consideration of these and other upcoming challenges, TAtech is putting them front-and-center at TAtech North America & The World Job Board Forum. To be held in Austin, Texas USA on May 22-24, it begins with a Keynote by David Crawford, VP/TA at New York Presbyterian Hospital and a multi-Candi award winner, on the morphing needs of employers, followed by sessions on the latest market research and new products coming into the market and a second Keynote by Aaron Matos, Founder & CEO of, on the role investment can (and does) play in shaping future technology solutions.

That’s just a sample of the jam-packed agenda during the day-and-a-half conference. The value of the information and insights it delivers is two-fold: first, it will help talent technology companies prepare for the future and second, it will enable them to start doing so right away. In effect, registering for the conference is actually a ticket to a better understanding of tomorrow’s as well as today’s talent technology marketplace.

Thanks for Reading,

Peter Weddle is the author or editor of over two dozen books and a former columnist for The Wall Street Journal. He is also the founder and CEO of TAtech: The Association for Talent Acquisition Solutions. You can download his latest book – The Neonaissance – FOR FREE at And, if you don't have time to read the entire book, just download a short excerpt of his inspirational message.